How Michael Jordan’s $275 million move paved the way for 2 NBA legends to own NBA franchises
|Tue Aug 16 2022
Michael Jordan purchasing the Charlotte Hornets (then Bobcats) for $275 million led to two NBA legends having minority stakes.
Unlike Magic Johnson, Bernard King, and Larry Bird who all signed with Converse to promote shoes that were common between all of them, Michael Jordan signed with Nike and got a chance to express his own sense of individuality. Nike gave Jordan his own shoe line and obliterated expectations, making $126 million in the first year instead of the projected $3 million over 3 years.
This was Jordan’s first step into developing a business portfolio. He would go on to take advice from Julius Erving who had built up a solid business acumen over the years and eventually got a variety of endorsements and delved deep into the investment side of business as well.
MJ’s crowning achievement in terms of investments however would have to be his $275 million acquisition of the Charlotte Bobcats in 2010. Being from North Carolina, it made sense for the 6x champ to make this purchase and boy did it not disappoint.
In merely 12 years since he became the majority stakeholder in the Hornets, the value of the franchise ballooned from $275 million to a whopping $1.5 billion as of 2022.
Michael Jordan and his move paved the way for both Grant Hill and Dwyane Wade.
Along with Michael Jordan, there are only two other NBA legends who possess ownership over an NBA team currently. They are Dwyane Wade and Grant Hill who have minority stakes in the Utah Jazz and the Atlanta Hawks, respectively. Magic Johnson had a minority stake in the Los Angeles Lakers but sold it to Dr. Patrick Soon-Shieng in 2010.
Dwyane Wade made headlines during the 2020-21 season by purchasing a minority stake in the Utah Jazz. The percentage of his stake has remained undisclosed but the minimum requirement is 1% and with the Jazz valued at $1.55 billion, it’s safe to say that ‘The Flash’ has at least $10.5 million invested in the Jazz.
A name that is quite surprising for many people to hear in this conversation is Grant Hill’s, a player that was hailed to be the next Michael Jordan during his Detroit Pistons days. While his playing career was marred with injuries especially with the Orlando Magic, he made up for it with savvy moves off the court.
Grant Hill bought the Atlanta Hawks alongside the team’s current owner, Tony Ressler, and several other investors for $800 million in 2015. The worth of the Hawks in 7 years has doubled, coming to about $1.6 billion in 2022. Hill holds an equity stake in the Hawks with the exact percentage of his stake unknown.