After failing to purchase the Miami Marlins and New York Mets, former MLB All-Star and current popcorn afficiando Alex Rodriguez is finalizing a deal to purchase the Minnesota Timberwolves along with ex-Wal-Mart president Marc Lore, per John Krawczynski of The Athletic.
I was at a bar recently that had a series of wheels that you paid to spin: one told you if you were getting a beer or shot or whatever, the next told you what it was going to consist of be it Fireball or Bud Light, and the final one telling you how many you were getting. This deal feels like one of those. Somewhere, there is a god in the cosmos spinning a wheel of random ex-athletes, then spinning a wheel of sports leagues, then spinning a wheel of locations, and finally spinning a wheel of who the business partner will be. The headline of “Alex Rodriguez buying an NBA team in Minnesota with guy who used to run Wal-Mart” is something that is going to take some getting used to for me.
The hilarity that Rodriguez wanted to buy a glamor franchise in sports, or at the very least a big market team, and ended up with the Timberwolves is not lost on me. It’s like a person trying to meet a romantic partner at the Met Gala then settling for whomever is at the end of the bar at TGI Fridays. Minnesota currently has the worst record in the NBA at 13-40 and it’s not like that futility is an anomaly. In the 16 years prior, the Timberwolves made the playoffs just once: sneaking in as the eighth seed in 2018 before losing 4-1 in the first round. In fact, in their 31 years as a franchise, they’ve been to the playoffs nine times and bowed out in the first round eight of those instances.
I cannot imagine Rodriguez will spend much time at home games. A-Rod grew up in Miami and still calls South Florida home, so excuse me if I think it’s far-fetched that he will have a few Iguanaritas at the Mall of America Rainforest Cafe before trudging through the snow over to the Target Center. I do, however, hope a budding rivalry forms between the T’Wolves and the Mavericks as the two owners with Shark Tank ties battle for Western Conference relevancy.
The valuation is reportedly $1.5 billion with Lore and Rodriguez set to take over the team in two-and-a-half years, according to Krawczynski.