AUBURN HILLS (WWJ/AP) – Reports were swirling, Friday, surrounding a possible sale of the Detroit Pistons. But, there’s no deal just yet.
“The parties are continuing to work in a cooperative manner and have agreed to a new 14- day exclusivity period,” said current team owner Karen Davidson, in a statement.
Team officials, earlier in the day, had declined to comment on conflicting reports about whether the Detroit Pistons had reached a tentative deal to either sell the franchise to California businessman Tom Gores.
This follows reports, months earlier, of the team being bought by Mike Ilitch.
The Detroit Free Press, citing a person it did not name, Friday morning reported that 46-year old Tom Gores, raised in Flint and a Michigan State University graduate, has purchased the team, as well as Palace Sports and Entertainment, for $420 million. However, The Detroit News reported that no deal has been reached and that negotiations would continue Friday.
Gores is founder and chairman of Platinum Equity, a private equity investment firm and is reported to be worth an estimated $2.2 billion.
If NBA Commissioner David Stern recommends the purchase, three-fourths of the league owners must approve the deal.
WWJ’s Tony Ortiz is reporting that no matter what kind of deal may be struck, it’s expected that one or both entities will ask if Gores – or whomever ends up buying the team – will keep the Pistons in Detroit, which would be a major part of whether the sale is approved.
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The Associated Press contributed to this report.