It Takes Two To Tango But Only One Idiot To Make Things Look Really Bad !
It would appear that former NBA great Ervin “Magic” Johnson is now lining up partners to make a decisive bid for MLB’s — Los Angeles Dodgers . Johnson in conjunction with venture capital firm Guggenheim Partners /Financial Services LLC , billionaire investor Mark Walter and former league front office executive Stan Kasten are said to be at the forefront of the consortium looking to make a successful bid for the team . Having been placed into bankruptcy (Chapter 11) in the US Federal Bankruptcy Court , in the state of Delaware , beleaguered owner Frank McCourt had hoped that this would forestall his creditors and the league hierarchy while he looked to reorganize the ballclub and allay the fears of his creditors. Instead what has happened is that McCourt has seen the light and began to realize that he faced a daunting task of convincing the presiding judge as well the league hierarchy and creditors that the organization would still be on a firm financial footing . =====================================================================
Slide show for your perusal . ====================================================================
One must admit that having seen Johnson as a part owner in the Los Angeles Lakers where he once held a minority stake (4.5%) in the team , which is currently owned by Jerry Buss . The thought of the former Lakers’ point guard making the switch to spearheading the ownership group for a major baseball franchise does come as something of a surprise ! But with Kasten no doubt on board as head of operations should their bid be successful , one would imagine that given Johnson’s business acumen and success backed by that of Mark Walter and the vast financial assets of Guggenheim Partners , it can only point to some future success for an organization that has been starved of that in recent years .
Los Angeles Lakers’ GM Mitch Kupchak a long time close friend of Magic Johnson has stated that he firmly believes that the former player and his potential partners can prove to be a great success in reinvigorating a downtrodden Dodgers’ organization . Given the team’s fall from grace and their rather poor performance this past season I find Kupchak’s statement rather refreshing . Granted , the most die hard Dodgers’ fans would be happy with anyone not named McCourt owning this team , having seen the now disgraced owner subject the organization to his capricious and malevolent schemes . So much so , that there were questions raised as to whether or not the club would actually survive or be complete dissolved . But in retrospect even with the late intervention of Commissioner Bud Selig in appointing C . Thomas Schieffer in overseeing the day to day operations of the Los Angeles Dodgers there was little that could be done to avert the bankruptcy proceedings to go ahead . Has there been ever a time when Selig and his cohorts within the league hierarchy have ever been so despised ? These assholes on a clear day would declare that the sky was dark and that there was turbulent weather ahead if it made them feel good about themselves ! And that has been clearly been the case in the handling of this debacle !
As things now stand , Johnson , Kasten and Walter, along with Guggenheim Partners might not be the only interested parties in acquiring the organization. But it would appear that with the high profiled faces of Magic Johnson and the baseball experience of Stan Kasten this might put them ahead of the pack in terms of potential bidders for the baseball franchise . The auctioning process is being handled by noted investment firm the Blackstone Group . And subject to their vetting of the likely candidate of suitors , a final decision will be made as to the parties going forward in the bidding process . MLB can ill afford to have another mess on its hands in light of the Frank McCourt ” debacle ” and the continued financial mess concerning the New York Mets and their situation . But such has been the involuntary action of Bud Selig concerning that specific issue that it is indeed hard to know what he might be thinking . My own personal opinion ! Selig is in fact dead from the neck up and is cerebrally challenged to think effectively ! Never mind the fact that he has subjected Jim Crane to repeated embarrassment in the sale of the Houston Astros from Drayton McClane to the Houston businessman . How long does it take to get the board of governors and owners together to act expeditiously ? Given the resolve Bud Selig at times , I firmly believe that his tenure as commissioner cannot end soon enough . And that is even with his proposed divisional realignment and adding one more tier to the playoff format to the postseason .
Courtesy of Associated Press
Magic Johnson joins bid to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers … Los Angeles (AP) The Los Angeles Dodgers could be ready for a little Magic. Magic Johnson has joined a group bidding to buy the beleaguered Dodgers, hoping to restore the luster of a once-glamorous franchise that has been sullied during owner Frank McCourt’s ” messy tenure” . Johnson, the longtime Los Angeles Lakers superstar and former part-owner of the NBA club, is partnering with former Atlanta Braves executive Stan Kasten and wealthy investor Mark Walter in the upcoming auction for the Dodgers, who filed for bankruptcy protection in June. McCourt finally agreed last month to auction the team at an undetermined future date. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to be part of the Dodgers legacy & bring a World Series championship back to LA,” Johnson tweeted Friday. Johnson has joined a heavyweight group in what’s expected to be a tough competition for the Dodgers: Kasten is the former president of the Braves and Washington Nationals, while Walter is the CEO of a global financial services firm managing more than $125 billion in assets. Their organization will be called Guggenheim Baseball Management, and Walter’s vast financial resources could put the group up front in the bidding. The Los Angeles Times first reported Johnson’s interest in the Dodgers. The news was greeted with enthusiasm across Los Angeles from fans who count Magic among the most popular athletes in Southern California sports history. The three-time NBA Most Valuable Player has become a successful businessman since his second retirement in 1996, with investments in several sectors of commercial real estate. But Johnson’s passion still is sports, and he has spent several years looking for an ownership role in a pro franchise, most recently expressing his interest in returning the NFL to Los Angeles. Johnson amicably left his ownership position with the Lakers in October 2010, selling his 4.5 percent equity stake to Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong in what’s widely thought to be a wildly lucrative transaction for the former Lakers point guard. ——————————————————————————————— Click on link to read this article in its entirety . ————————————————————————————————
It is hard to now envisage what the future holds for the Los Angles Dodgers , in particular for the likes of Don Mattingly and his coaching staff , never mind the uncertainty of the players on this team and their overall status from a financial standpoint . Matt Kemp may well have received a lovely parting gift from McCourt in terms of an 8 year $160 million contract but does anyone truly believe that the rest of teammates won’t mind jumping on that particular gravy train when their time actually comes ? Who let the lunatic back into the asylum in allowing this particular farce ? Ned Colletti and Peter Wilhelm are clearly not that bright , so I can only surmise that this was Frank McCourt’s way of signalling his middle finger ” salute “ to the fans and baseball’s hierarchy !
OK, so the Los Angeles Lakers now find themselves in need of a front court presence in terms of a center given the error prone and at times inconsistent play of Andrew Bynum . But that in of-itself can’t undercut the woes of this team last season especially during the NBA playoffs . To underscore that fact , simply look at the team’s stats and the very fact that what little contribution proffered up by Bynum was simply minuscule at best .
In light of the team’s postseason woes against eventual champions the Dallas Mavericks in the conference finals , you simply knew that inexplicable loss , the bickering amongst the players and the departure of Phil Jackson simply suggested that this Lakers’ team taught too highly of themselves and had no heart . Now , in comes Mike Brown as the successor to Jackson at the behest of Jerry Buss’ son Jim Buss and GM Mitch Kupchak . It remains to be seen whether or not Brown can replicate much of the success that the attained while the coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers . There’s no denying that in having Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol , he has the core of something far more desirable than anything he had at his disposal while with the Cavaliers . But within the city of Los Angeles the expectations are far much higher for the discerning fans one of the NBA’s most heralded franchises .
If the rumors are to be believed that the Los Angeles Lakers are said to be showing interest in bringing in Kris Humphries into the fold , then I have to question the sanity of the front office of the Lakers under Mitch Kupchak . Humphries currently with the New Jersey Nets and perhaps better known for his 72 day farcical marriage to reality star Kim Kardashian , rather than for anything achieved over the course of his professional career can’t be seriously thought of as a serious upgraded in talent much less being a productive center within the NBA .
Seven years as a professional within the NBA and there seems to be nothing stands out as a highlight in Kris Humphries career. As to why the Los Angeles Lakers would view him as a comfortable fit within the organization , begs the question is the front office of the organization all the more intent on going more “Hollywood” ? Someone needs to remind Jerry Buss and Mitch Kupchak that the Kardashians aren’t part of the package deal . Less we remember also that Lamar Odom just happens to be on the downside of a career that has often seen more lows than highs and that is the advent of his own celebrity marriage to another of the Kardashian clan (Khloe) .
With the NBA lockout now having ended we will have a truncated schedule of 66 games and no doubt a hectic flurry of free agent movement around the league as it relates to a number of teams looking to bolster their rosters. As an unrestricted free agent there is no doubt that the player will not mind being in an environment that will be conducive to his game . But to my mind that the Los Angeles Lakers if they truly serious upon embarking upon a player capable of being a suitable backup or alternative to Andrew Bynum then the players now said to be available give far more credibility than anything one would think that Humphries is likely to offer .
If the Los Angeles Lakers are to be a success this season then clearly they will have to apply themselves with a great deal of resolve throughout this shortened season . As we have seen a decline in this team , we have seen strides taken in the development of teams such as the Oklahoma City Thunder , Denver Nuggets , Dallas Mavericks , Portland Trailblazers and New Orleans Hornets .
The Los Angeles Lakers this upcoming season will have to contend with a great deal more than they had hoped to bargain for . No longer the ” King of the Hill ” their authority has not only been challenged and they can no longer be considered to be the team to beat within the Western Conference . No doubt that they can be considered a presumptive favorite to make the postseason and perhaps win their division with effortless ease but beyond that it would now take more than a betting man to suggest that
Now inasmuch as the NBA hierarchy , team owners and the NBPA union are said to be relishing this upcoming season and that there now happens to be an accord reached between the league and union (NBPA) . In reality the negotiations that took place with David Stern and Ass’t Commissioner Adam Silver representing the case for the league whereas the opposition led by Billy Hunter and union President Derek Fisher offered little in the way of real encouragement for the fans. What the fans have been given is a mere piece meal because the league still faces a great deal of financial uncertainty that was in no way clearly addressed in terms of a rudimentary and succinct collective bargaining agreement . They will still persist with their rather idiotic insistence that their ” soft salary cap” ( $57.7 million) aids the small market teams along their de-facto tax sharing revenue scheme . But in reality all the NBA has been seen to have done is to hand some teams a life jacket while others have been allowed to slip into the life boat . Care to guess which one of the parties in question is now likely to survive ? Something I clearly don’t believe that David Stern or the union are at all concerned with ! They may well have acted in earnest in trying to persuade the fans they wanted equality for both parties but if the truth be known , absolutely nothing about the NBA’s new agreement is actually sound from a financial standpoint . It certainly does not address the situation where many of the more profitable teams will be able to spend at will but it was simply something that they clearly didn’t want exposed within the public domain .
The NBA during this lockout has lost a great deal more than fan loyalty , if anything it has also the fans’ faith in believing anything that either the league hierarchy or union has to say . Now this season that begins earnest has to be an electrifying one if they are to lure the fans back the arenas around the country this upcoming season and into their postseason foray. ===========================================================================
Picture gallery for your perusal .
If Magic Johnson and his partners are successful in their bid to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers do you believe that the relationship will be a fruitful one ? Also what thoughts if any do you have with regard to the NBA and their return ? Simply chime in with a comment as you would deem fit . 😉 😉 ——–
Picture and slide show details . ============================================================================
(1) Jose Bautista of the Toronto Blue Jays, MLB commissioner Bud Selig and Matt Kemp of the Los Angeles Dodgers speak during a press conference honoring Bautista and Kemp with the American and National League 2011 Hank Aaron Award prior to game five of the MLB World Series between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 24, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images ….
(2) Sportsman Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson , wife Cookie and actor and director Tyler Perry at Lionsgate’s Premiere Of ‘Why Did I Get Married?’ held at the The Cinerama Dome, Arclight Hollywood on October 4, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. Getty Images Entertainment / Frazer Harrison .. ….
(3) Mike Rizzo of the Washington Nationals is seen here alongside Stan Kasten (right). The former front office executive with the Nationals and Atlanta Braves is set to join Magic Johnson , Mark Walter and Walter’s company Guggenheim Partners in lodging a serious bid for the Los Angeles Dodgers . Also said to be interested in pursuing a bid for the organization is Dallas Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban upon the condition that the team’s financial records are made available for his scrutiny alongside of his lawyers and accountants . AP Photo/Keith Walsh ……
(4) Todd Boehly , left, the president of Guggenheim Partners, along with Alan D. Schwartz , center, executive chairman, and Mark R. Walter, C.E.O .(right) The family started the investment firm because it wanted to make its money work harder. The financial investment firm has over $125 billion ($125,000,000,000) in assets in a wide range of companies globally . Chris Aronson / New York Times .
(5) Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak, rear right, and head coach Mike Brown talk to reporters during a news conference at the NBA basketball team’s training facility in El Segundo, Calif., Friday, Dec. 2, 2011. AP Photo/Reed Saxon …
(6) Los Angeles Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss arrives for NBA labor negotiations at Sheraton New York Hotel & Towers on October 20, 2011 in New York City. Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images ….
(7) Bynum and teammate Kobe Bryant are seen here seated on the bench during an NBA game at the Staples Center in Los Angeles , California , this past season . AP Photo …
(8) Etan Thomas (36) of the Atlanta Hawks defends the basket against Kris Humphries (43 ) of the New Jersey Nets at Philips Arena on December 7, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia. Getty Images / Kevin C Cox …..
(9) Jason Collins (34) of the Atlanta Hawks battles for a loose ball against Kris Humphries (43) of the New Jersey Nets at Philips Arena on December 7, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia. Getty Images / Kevin C Cox ….. =========================================================================== 😉
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