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February 23, 2011

Carmelo Anthony’s Impact on Jay-Z’s Net Worth

by Zack O'Malley Greenburg

When Carmelo Anthony suits up for his first game as a Knick tonight, there will be a thick soup of euphoria in the air. There will be cheers, laughter and maybe even a few tears of joy. Because for the first time in a decade, New York basketball fans have a championship-caliber team to root for, helmed by two name-brand superstars.

But for Brooklyn native and Nets co-owner Jay-Z, the focus will be on the other side of the river, and what might have been – not to mention a lost opportunity for the rapper to add another seven-figure sum to his net worth ($450 million, by our latest estimates) through a bump in the value of his 1.5% stake in the Nets.

“Had the Nets been able to acquire Carmelo at a reasonable price, the franchise value would have increased,” says Marc Ganis, president of Chicago-based consultancy SportsCorp. “A star of his caliber combined with a rebranding and move to Brooklyn could have added more than $100 million to the franchise’s value.”

A simple back-of-the-envelope calculation suggests that Carmelo’s trade to the Knicks, and not to the Nets, will cost Jay-Z about $1.5 million in equity. It also represents lost value of $80 million for Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, who holds an 80% stake in the team as majority owner. And now, as the Nets prepare for a move to Brooklyn in 2012, both moguls must determine what it is that they’re moving.


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Gothamist, Hey, the Nets Made a Big Trade Too!

In the aftermath of the conclusion to the Carmelodrama, the Nets made their own splashy move today, trading Derrick Favors, Devin Harris, two first-round draft picks and cash to the Utah Jazz for two time All-Star point guard Deron Williams. After they lost the LeBron sweepstakes last summer, and the Carmelo one this week, the Nets were determined to emerge with a franchise player this time; and though it seemingly came together very quickly, coach Anthony Johnson says it was in the works for awhile: "This is not a Plan B. It was just one that wasn't announced. One that nobody got -- until recently. He's not a Plan B. He's a Plan A also. We've been working on this for a while."

If it's true, then this gives further credence to the suggestion that the Nets only re-entered the Carmelo trade discussions last week in order to drive the price up for the Knicks, and piss them off at the same time. It's also interesting that over the weekend, it was reported that Williams told associates he was interested in joining with Amare in NY in 2012. But now, Williams will be the face of the Nets come 2012/2013, when the team moves into the Barclay Center at Atlantic Yards.

NoLandGrab: Not so fast — the Forbes story goes on to point out that Williams can opt out of his Nets contract at the end of next season.

Atlantic Yards Report, My thoughts on the meaning of the BK Nets? Don't forget the EB-5 story, as immigrant investors are misled into thinking they're supporting an arena

Debbie Downer, aka Norman Oder, still thinks the mainstream press ought to focus on all the crooked crap that actually matters, instead of the faux hoops hoopla for a league that's likely not even going to be in business next season. He just doesn't get how the media works, does he?

I was asked today to comment for a New York Observer article "about the post-Melo fight between the Nets and the Knicks for New York's psyche. Would you be interested in sharing your thoughts as to what this team does or does not mean for Brooklyn and the city as a whole?"

My response: "I think it means that Chinese millionaires think they're investing in an arena in exchange for green cards, via the developer's dubious deployment of the federal government's EB-5 program."

Don't put on blinders

Yeah, it sounds like a non sequitur, but the point is: when it comes to sports, I lean toward Dave Zirin, who can't forget how team owners wangle profits, not Will Leitch, who willfully puts on blinders.

And the New York Observer, however worthy its effort to cruise the borough basketball zeitgeist, should also have been reporting on what surely is misrepresentation and may be fraud.

It was former Assemblyman Richard Brodsky who famously said, "[T]here is nothing like professional sports to make public people nutty."

That applies to the press, as well.

NLG: In non-EB-5-related news tonight, 'Melo had 27 points and 10 boards in his New York debut, as the Knicks defeated the Milwaukee Bucks, a team they'd beaten only once in their last eight tries, 114-108.

Posted by eric at February 23, 2011 10:44 PM