Benson owning the Hornets is a good thing
We got some phenomenal news for Hornets basketball and the city of New Orleans on this Friday the 13th. Saints owner Tom Benson is buying the NBA owned team.
NBA.com's David Aldridge is saying the sale price is $338 million.
The Hornets have been in ownership limbo ever since the NBA bought the franchise from George Shinn last December. The league took over the team for $310 million, and it was very unclear if the NBA would be able to recoup that cost in a sale.
After three straight years of operating losses, Forbes magazine valued the Hornets franchise at $285 million in January, only the 24th-highest value in basketball.
The magazine says Tom Benson has an estimated $1.1 billion in net worth. It mostly comes from his ownership of the Saints. He also controls various real estate, media properties, as well as a number of auto dealerships.
Now the NFL does have cross-ownership rules about team owners dabbling in other sports, but they won't stop this deal. To prevent inter-sport conflicts of interest, Benson would be prohibited from buying an NBA franchise in any market with a professional football team other than his own. Since both the Saints and Hornets are in New Orleans, however, it is fine.
Now that Benson's wallet is open buying another sports franchise; could locking up the Saints franchise QB be next?