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Friday, January 28, 2011

Learning From The Rangers: The Wilpons Loosen Their Grasp On The Mets

Craig Calcaterra alerts us to the possibility of a new ownership group coming, not today, not tomorrow, but soon to the Mets now that the Wilpons are said to be seeking minority partners in the team. Presumably this means they're under cash flow constraints, and are looking for deep pockets who can help with that. But anyone with that kind of money might just as readily be interested in a controlling interest in the team, especially considering there is no public market for shares of major league teams.

Two additional thoughts:

  1. Incidentally, isn't it odd that Frank McCourt put his hat out to Fox in the same offseason? Are players under contract paid now? Shouldn't this be more an issue in the regular season?
  2. In the BTF discussion of this story, the first comment looms large:
    Thus flatly contradicting the assurances the Wilpons made in late 2008 and in 2009 that the Madoff scandal would have no effect on the Mets.
    Remember that?
Update: Calcaterra, again:
Against [that] backdrop came this tweet from Bart Hubbuch of the New York Post:

One of my sources from #Mets beat told me gov’t seeking $1B(!) clawback from Wilpon/Katz. No way they can keep the team if that’s true.

With the caveat that [...] this is just gossip at this point [...], allow me to say this: mercy.

Update 2: The New York Times confirms the $1B figure:
One person involved in the Madoff cases said it was possible that [Madoff estate trustee Irving H.] Picard was seeking as much as $1 billion from Wilpon and Katz.

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