New Orleans Hornets ready to swarm with new owner

New Orleans Hornets ready to swarm with new owner

Steve’s breakdown: This is all but a done deal. There is no way they are going to block one of the most respected professional team owners from buying the Hornets. So if you are in the market for a pro-basketball team as a client, it’s time to lace-up.

NEW ORLEANS: Tom Benson cleared another step toward his final approval as owner of the New Orleans Hornets on Tuesday when the Federal Trade Commission cleared his $338 million purchase of the franchise from the NBA.

FTC spokesman Mitchell Katz confirmed Benson’s clearance, which is considered a routine procedure.

Benson beat out two other potential ownership groups last month. NBA Commissioner David Stern said Benson, who has owned the Saints since 1985, was the perfect owner for the Hornets.

The final hurdle Benson must clear before he assumes ownership of the Hornets is approval by the NBA’s Board of Governors.

That is expected to happen once a new lease with the state is finalized. The lease will include $40 million in capital outlays and will give the Hornets new revenue streams that would end state subsides and keep the Hornets playing in the New Orleans Arena through at least 2024, and possibly 2029.


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