Over the last few years, former MLB superstar Alex Rodriguez and businessman Marc Lore have been gathering equity in order to slowly take over ownership of the Minnesota Timberwolves from long-time owner Glen Taylor. While the new ownership group was set to make their final payment in order to become the majority owners at the end of March, Taylor refused to go through with the sale, claiming that they did not gather all that was needed before the expiration of their option to purchase per the terms of their initial agreement.

Now, the two sides are set to handle this matter in a mediation session on May 1 that will not involve the league office. Whereas Lore and Rodriguez have made it clear that they followed the three-year ownership succession plan they agreed to with Taylor, the Timberwolves' owner has seemed to have a change of heart regarding his status with the franchise.

Under terms of the purchase agreement, the final purchase of ownership equity was set to occur within 90 days following the exercise notice issued by Lore and Rodriguez, per a team release. This 90-day period expired on March 27, 2024, and no extension was given by Taylor.

“I will continue to work with Marc, Alex, and the rest of the ownership group to ensure our teams have the necessary resources to compete at the highest levels on and off the court,” Taylor said in the team's press release at the end of March. “The Timberwolves and Lynx are no longer for sale.”

So, what actually happened that resulted in this dispute between the new ownership group, led by Rodriguez and Lore, and Taylor? It appears as if there has been a divide between the two sides dating back to when changes in the front office were made.

Glen Taylor's broken relationship with Alex Rodriguez, Marc Lore

Minnesota Timberwolves co-minority owners Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore celebrate a victory over the Los Angeles Clippers after a play-in game at Target Center.
Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports

When the Timberwolves removed Gersson Rosas from his position as the Timberwolves' president of basketball operations, they immediately began searching for a top-of-the-line executive that could help turn this franchise into a true contender. That is why Lore and Rodriguez targeted Tim Connelly, who had been the architect of the Denver Nuggets' eventual championship roster. However, in order to convince Connelly to leave Denver, the Timberwolves' new ownership group offered Connelly a five-year, $40 million contract that included phantom equity in the organization, according to Joe Pompliano of the Huddle Up Substack.

This is something that did not sit well with Taylor. In addition to thinking that the organization was paying too much money for their new executive, Taylor also didn't like the idea of setting a new precedent by giving the president of basketball operations equity in the team. Taylor, who eventually approved the hiring of Connelly, did so with the stipulation that Rodriguez and Lore remove the phantom equity clause from the executive's new deal.

All in all, it started to become clear that Taylor was not at peace with the idea of giving up control of his franchise. He was very much against the trade the team made for Rudy Gobert in 2022, and Taylor was not a fan of Rodriguez and Lore pursuing Connelly from the Nuggets. As the new ownership group moved forward with their vision, the 83-year-old owner continued to grow upset with the direction of his franchise.

Whereas Rodriguez and Lore are “new school” in the sense that they have spent money to get what they want, Taylor has always run his organization in a way where he has earned certain things over time. This change has certainly led to a fractured relationship between the two sides, which has now led them to mediation for the sale of the team.

The Timberwolves concluded the 2023-24 regular season 56-26 overall, their second-best record in franchise history. Departing the franchise while they are in the midst of something special is yet another reason why Taylor has been so hesitant to sell the final chunk of ownership equity to Lore and Rodriguez. At the end of the day, he may not have a choice in the matter.

What happens from here is still unknown. Taylor wants to remain at the helm of the Timberwolves, but he signed a contract with Lore and Rodriguez, allowing them to eventually take majority control away from the long-time owner. That time has come, and even though Taylor is refusing to sell, mediation may very well side with Lore and Rodriguez.

Whether it is a personal vendetta or something else, Taylor simply wants to stop the new ownership from taking over because he believes they will tear down everything he has built through the years. At this point, it seems like Taylor's days as the majority owner of the Timberwolves are numbered after he has attempted to sabotage this deal with Lore and Rodriguez on several occasions through the years.