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September 22, 2009
Prokhorov: I want share of Nets, and Alaska back
The Mikhail Prokhorov New Jersey Nets rumors got even crazier today when Russia's richest man posted to his LiveJournal page a "counterproposal" for investing in the team's Brooklyn arena project. (See the Google translation here.)
Though the media seem to be taking it seriously, much of it seems tongue-in-cheek, including demands for controlling interest in the Nets in return for a "symbolic price," as well as "an equal place in the elite world of basketball" for Russia and placement of Russian coaches in the NBA. Prokhorov also implies that he first learned of his supposed interest in the Nets by reading about it in the newspaper, though that could be just the bad translation.
Of course, maybe all this is the kind of thing that passes for common business practice in Russia — like negotiating business deals via LiveJournal, for that matter. It seems equally likely, though, that Prokhorov is just issuing a nutso bid as a way to up his international profile as a sports mogul. I'll be eagerly watching Bruce Ratner's Facebook page for further details.