An ownership group featuring former MLB star Alex Rodriguez and tech entrepreneur Marc Lore has reached an agreement to purchase the Minnesota Timberwolves from Glen Taylor for $1.5 billion. Rodriguez and Lore are equal partners in the purchase, which also includes the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx.
The following statement was released Friday morning regarding the sale:
"Glen Taylor has reached an agreement with Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez regarding the sale and future ownership of the Timberwolves and Lynx. The transaction will close following league approval, beginning the transition of ownership and a new chapter of Minnesota Timberwolves and Lynx basketball."
The group initially signed a letter of intent on April 10, which gave it exclusive negotiating rights for the next 30 days. However, that time frame passed without a formal deal, which led to speculation that the team could be sold to another group. Wolves legend Kevin Garnett was involved with a group that made inquiries, but the situation became messy and never panned out given the bad blood between Garnett and Taylor. Back in August, Taylor was in advanced talks with Daniel E. Straus, a former minority owner of the Memphis Grizzlies, but it went nowhere in part due to Taylor's reluctance to actually let go of his beloved teams. Now, though, Taylor has finally decided to sell the teams. The deal still needs to be approved by the NBA's Board of Governors before it becomes official.
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Taylor has owned the Timberwolves since 1994 and the Lynx since 1999. He purchased the Wolves for around $90 million, so he will certainly be making a pretty penny on the sale. The Timberwolves didn't enjoy much success during Taylor's time as the owner. Though they made the playoffs nine times, with only one trip past the first round. Taylor leaves without any titles or Finals appearances. Perhaps the team will see more success under new ownership.