Monday, August 8, 2011

Is It Smart To Buy An NBA Team Right Now?

Commissioner David Stern has been saying for months that the current NBA model is broken and several NBA franchises are losing millions of dollars every year. Union president Billy Hunter says the two sides are so far apart there is very little chance we will see any basketball next season. If we are to take these two men at their word can you explain what the hell Alex Muruelo is doing?

California businessman Alex Muruelo recently purchased the Atlanta Hawks for an undisclosed amount of money. It seems silly for anyone to invest in a league with such uncertainty. You don't have to have a master's degree in business administration to understand the NBA is a financial mess right now and there are no easy solutions.

Perhaps Mr. Muruelo is a perpetual optimist that always see the glass as half full. The NBA's popularity soared this year to levels we haven't seen in decades. It seems logical (although not very likely) the two sides would do everything in their power to capitalize on the momentum and ride the wave of success.

Perhaps Mr. Muruelo is impulsive and just wants a big toy to play with. It is the ultimate dream of most sports fans to own a professional franchise. The opportunity presented itself and Alex couldn't resist.

Whatever the reason the timing of this purchase is strange. On a scale of 1 to 10 the level of risk associated with this investment is a 12. The two sides are billions of dollars apart and the negotiating sessions have been less than productive. Maybe Alex Muruelo knows something we don't, but this deal doesn't seem to pencil out. It's not too often you see someone volunteers to jump on a sinking ship. I hope Alex has his live vest on.

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