Just over a year ago, the Maloof brothers, former owners of the Sacramento Kings sold their franchise for a then record $535 million to Vivek Ranadive.
Ranadive and his ownership group of course clutched the Kings out of the grasp of Steve Ballmer, who after agreeing with the Maloof brothers, was set to take over the Sacramento franchise alongside hedge fund investor Chris Hansen.
Of course, the NBA blocked the sale as Ballmer and Hansen planned to relocate the Kings franchise to Seattle, allowing Ranadive to purchase the Kings from the Maloof brothers – the same Maloof brothers who say Steve Ballmer overpaid for the Clippers franchise.
Former Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer would be overpaying for the L.A. Clippers at his record offer of $2 billion, but the deal would be “a great move” anyway, former Sacramento Kings owner Joe Maloff told the Los Angeles Times on Friday.
No matter how you slice it, $2 billion dollars is an absurdly insane amount of money so the sentiment of overpaying is well understood. However, how often does a team in a major market like Los Angeles, Chicago or New York appear for sale?
It’s pretty clear that Ballmer wanted to strike hard and strike quickly and rather than get into a bidding war, he blew other offers out of the water who were looking to get a more reasonable rate.
The clear winner in all of this, though? The NBA and their owners.
Just a year after the Kings and then Milwaukee Bucks, two of the NBA’s smallest markets broke records for sale prices, the Clippers sell for $2 billion dollars. The value of every franchise continues to go up with every sale.