The Brooklyn Nets is one of the most challenged and expensive teams in the league, and it looks like hedge fund manager Steve Cohen will not be a buyer. After pouring millions into the team to find the best players, Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov said he is going to shed his 80% stake in the team, which is barely a playoff team in the Eastern Conference.
The Washington Post criticized Prokhorov for recruiting “aging, expensive veterans” of the game, and Prokhorov decided to pick talent himself rather than relying on expert, General manager Billy King.
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Now Prokhorov is in a pickle and the collapse of the ruble in the hobbled Russian economy is not helping. The question is, can Prokhorov find a buyer for the Nets, since the team has been a genuine disappointment? Representatives handling the sale of the Nets met with Steven Cohen, who manages $10 billion of his own money at Point72 Capital, but it looks like Cohen has to spruce up his own reputation without having to worry about revitalizing an entire team. Cohen was forced to close down SAC Capital Advisor in a settlement to an insider trading charges, and at Point72, he is allowed to manage only his own money.
Jonathan Gasthalter, a spokesman for Cohen, told Bloomberg, “He is focused on making Point72 a premier investment firm in the industry, while adhering to the highest ethical standards.” In other words, he has plenty of his own problems, he doesn’t need the Nets.