If A-Rod, Marc Lore Miss March Payment Deadline, Timberwolves Purchase Could Be Canceled

marc lore alex rodriguez glen taylor Minnesota Timberwolves
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

The Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez ownership group has bought out approximately 40% of Glen Taylor’s stake in the Minnesota Timberwolves organization but the process hasn’t been easy. They’ve had to bring on additional investors at different times during the purchase to make payment deadlines (which still had to be pushed back multiple times before that).

But this feels a little bit different. Even when the liquidity hasn’t been there for Lore and A-Rod in the past, they’ve remained in good communication and good standing with Taylor. That doesn’t seem to be the case as much here.

Their latest payment, which was originally due on December 31, was supposed to increase the group’s stake up to 60% ownership, but they requested a 60-day delay, which Glen granted. But at the end of last month, when that payment came due, they pushed it back… again. And now, according to two insiders in town with direct access to Taylor, the Wolves majority owner hasn’t heard from Rodriguez or Lore since January.

Awkwardly, Rodriguez and Lore still have not provided sought-after documents or even communicated with Taylor since January. But the buyers recently provided sale information to the NBA, which of last week hadn’t had time to review it.

Charley Walters – Pioneer Press

Not only that, but they’ve been late to hand in paperwork to the NBA, which is starting to get irritated by this entire process. There are rich people around the world who are drooling over professional American major sports organizations right now, there is no reason for a purchase to be this difficult.

What is up with the Marc Lore, Alex Rodriguez Timberwolves purchase?

Minnesota Timberwolves glen taylor marc lore alex rodriguez
Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

But the leniency period appears to be over. A-Rod and Lore must make their next payment by March 27. If they don’t, according to Charley Walters (Pioneer Press), the purchase could be completely canceled. If that happens, the good friend of Glen Taylor writes in his semi-weekly Sunday column (for tomorrow’s paper), the Wolves’ 82-year-old owner would get all of his shares back and he’d get to pocket the $600 million that the A-Rod/Lore group has paid to date.

If Rodriguez and Lore, who appears to be the lead investor, don’t comply by the coming deadline, the sale agreement could be canceled. If the sale is canceled, Taylor and his limited partners would get to keep payments totaling about $600 million that have already been secured.

Charley Walters – Pioneer Press

What does Walters mean when he notes that Lore “appears to be the lead investor”? Well, Darren Wolfson (SKOR North, KSTP) reported a couple weeks ago that the ownership group A-Rod and Marc are the faces of has become much bigger than anybody really knew, growing to approximately 10 individual members, including former Google and Cargill executives.

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Doogie says that Lore and A-Rod, together, may not even get to 51% ownership of the team. That certain investment firms they are working with could end up owning more than they do. It’s important to remember that anything over 15% can be considered majority ownership in the NBA.

So, if those with a larger stake than Lore/A-Rod come from an investment group of some sort, they could still be viewed as owning more of the organization than anyone else. Taylor is still supposed to own around 20% , even after the final payment from the new group is made.

“You can have up to 25 limited partners. They’re going to have a number of limited partners, Heck, they’re going to have some silent partners in the end. They may not even own collectively 51% of the team. Right? There may be some silent partners, equity firms that actually have more ownership than Mark and Alex. Certainly Alex, that I can tell you.”

Darren Wolfson – SKOR North

Now, don’t get too rustled up about this deal possibly falling apart. It has too many rich players in it now. There’s no way all of those millionaires/billionaires are just going to hand their money to Glen Taylor so he can turn around and sell the team to a different buyer at double the cost.

Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez agreed to pay $1.5 billion and Glen Taylor has stood by his word to sell it to them for that amount. But now three years later, that price might as well be for an MLS soccer team. If the longtime Minnesota Timberwolves owner were able to take the organization back to market, it would go for $3 billion.

Even though it probably gets done in the end, it’s weird how long this has been drug out and how difficult it has become to complete.

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