Bobby Marks says Mikhail Prokhorov saved the franchise
Mikhail Prokhorov has held an ownership stake with the Brooklyn Nets for 10 years. However, the Russian-born billionaire is offloading the remaining 51% of his claim to minority owner Joseph Tsai at some point this month.
For some, Prokhorov’s tenure with the team will be remembered simply by his willingness to spend money. For others, though, including former Nets executive Bobby Marks, Prokhorov helped “save the franchise:”
“Part of his legacy is that he saved the Nets,” Marks recently told SI.
Prokhorov, now 54 years of age, acquired the Nets for $223 million in 2009. According to SI, he’ll now sell the team for a whopping return: $2.35 billion. On his watch, the Nets carried an overall record of 300-504.
“He went for it, tried to win a championship and left,” one longtime Nets official told SI, referring to Prokhorov.
Though he spent loads of cash on the Barclays Center project and rebuilding the Nets, Marks says Prokhorov wasn’t the hands-on owner that he needed to be:
“A downfall of his was he didn’t challenge you,” Marks told SI. “I think nowadays, if you’re the owner of a team, and you are going to go out and sign a player, I want you to debate me on the merits of a good signing, of a draft pick. He just wasn’t around. He did not get the full hands-on experience, the inner workings of how the basketball operations people worked.”
The Nets finished the 2018-19 regular season campaign with a 42-40 overall record, which earned the team a No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference Playoffs. Unfortunately, though, Brooklyn was defeated by the Sixers in the opening round, 4-1.