Oracle chief Larry Ellison recently lost a bidding war for the Golden State Warriors, but his dream of owning a basketball team isn’t dead yet.
Forbes’ Mike Ozanian reports that Ellison could be interested in buying the New Orleans Hornets from the NBA and moving them to San Jose. They would join the Warriors in the sixth-largest TV market and give the league another adventurous billionaire to match wits with Mark Cuban and Mikhail Prokhorov.
There’s just two catches. Ellison would have have pony up a $150 million re-location fee to Peter Guber and Joseph Lacob, the guys who outbid him to snag the Warriors back in july. Ozanian says the possibility of that relocation fee — a kickback for having to share their market with another team — was part of what drove Golden State’s price to $450M.
The second catch is that the NBA has made such a show of being committed to the city of New Orleans that they might still insist on only dealing local owners. But it will be hard pressed to find one who can match an offer from Ellison.
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