Michael Jordan will take a serious look at buying controlling interest in the Charlotte Bobcats, according to two sources knowledgeable of the situation. Jordan has not been available for comment since the Observer reported Friday that majority owner Bob Johnson is looking to sell the team. Jordan has a minority interest in the Bobcats and the former NBA superstar oversees their basketball operation.
Jordan has said in the past he'd like to be majority owner. Now that's more than hypothetical, with Johnson hiring sports investment banker Sal Galatioto to find a buyer. Both sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Jordan has the interest and the financial backing to pursue the team. The question for Jordan, or any other buyer, is what Johnson will peg as the team's value.
A source familiar with the situation said there's interest, mostly from out-of-town suitors, in buying the franchise, five years removed from expansion. That same source said those suitors aren't interested in moving the team and are sensitive to the reputation Johnson acquired as an absentee owner in Charlotte.
The way I hear it, Johnson is clinging to the idea he can recoup his initial investment -- about $330 million -- as the current value of this team. Just to offer an analogy, how many of us have two-year-old home appraisals that don't vaguely resemble the current value of our homes?