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Clippers owner Steve Ballmer nearing deal to buy The Forum

Clippers, Steve Ballmer

Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Ballmer is nearing a deal to purchase The Forum in Inglewood California, which would clear a major obstacle in the team’s quest to building a new home arena.

Ballmer is set to purchase The Forum from the Madison Square Garden Company. In a statement released to ESPN, the Clippers — who neither denied or confirmed the report — said:

“The Clippers continue to pursue plans to build a state-of-the-art, 18,000-seat basketball arena and entertainment complex in Inglewood and are currently working with the city to successfully complete the comprehensive Environmental Impact Report.”

“We are examining every possible way to resolve our differences with Madison Square Garden Co. regarding our new arena.”

The Clippers have been co-tenants at the Staples Center since 1999. They share the multi-purpose arena with the Los Angeles Lakers and the NHL’s Los Angeles Kings.

In January 2013, the Clippers signed a 10-year extension of their lease, which would keep the team at Staples until June 2024.

The team has long considered themselves as the ‘third tenant’ in the arena. After all, they receive a smaller share of proceeds from suites and club seats than the Lakers and Kings. They also don’t have much say in terms of scheduling.

Back in 2014, Steve Ballmer purchased the team for $2 billion. Since then, he has long dreamed to be the lone owner of a basketball complex. He not only intends to develop the Clippers’ home arena, but he also plans to introduce brand new technological innovations — venturing into additional revenue streams such as concessions, offices and training center.