LOS ANGELES – Steve Ballmer and LA Clippers have announced the purchase, through a third company, of the Forum in Inglewood, California. James Dolan, the CEO of MSG –which own the Forum — is selling the arena to Ballmer's group, CAPSS LLC. for a whopping $400 million in cash.
LA Clippers Chariman Steve Ballmer and Vice Chairman Dennis Wong have announced the purchase of the Forum from MSG, via CAPSS LLC. pic.twitter.com/UJ75zPueuE
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) March 24, 2020
The news comes three weeks after it was reported that Ballmer was nearing an agreement to purchase the arena.
“This is an unprecedented time, but we believe in our collective future,” Ballmer said in a statement. “We are committed to our investment in the City of Inglewood, which will be good for the community, the Clippers, and our fans.”
Since reports first came out that Ballmer was close to buying the Forum, of course, there have been a number of more pressing matters to attend to. The coronavirus outbreak within the NBA forced the decision to pause all games and operations indefinitely.
Despite the many distractions, the arena has always been a priority for Ballmer.
“We’re grinders. We’re long-term players, and we’re grinders,” Ballmer told ClutchPoints in a sitdown interview back in training camp. “You want to hit us in the nose? OK! We’ll keep moving. You can’t knock us down! I'm not sure they understand what they’ve gotten themselves into, from my perspective in the sense that we’ll just keep going.
“We’re going to keep patient. We have plenty of time. Keep patient, keep going.”
Five months later, one of the biggest hurdles for the new arena is out of the way.
Ballmer plans for the Forum and the new Clippers arena to both operate and allow for coordinated programming between the two venues. The aim would be to improve traffic congestion around any basketball games and concerts. All current employees at the Forum will be extended employment offers by the new owner, CAPSS LLC.
The new Clippers arena project is set to be a privately financed, state-of-the-art, 18,000-seat basketball arena. The project is currently undergoing an environmental review by the City of Inglewood. Public hearings to approve the project are expected to be held in the summer of 2020.
The new arena will also be creating an estimated 7,500 high-paying construction jobs and 1,500 permanent jobs once the complex is open, the team says. In addition to the economic and civic benefits, the Clippers have proposed a $100 million package of community benefits as well.