Phil Knight, founder of Nike and Dodgers' Alan Smolinisky bid on the Portland Trail Blazers
Ricky Gray | June 3, 2022
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The two businessmen are planning to aggressively pursue the purchase of the team.
The Los Angeles Dodgers part-owner Alan Smolinisky and Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, have submitted an offer of over $2bn to purchase the Portland Trail Blazers. Sources revealed this news to ESPN first.
At the moment, the Paul Allen Trust oversees the franchise. The Trail Blazers have released a statement surrounding the offer proposed by Knight and Smolinisky.
This is the statement from the Trail Blazers: "An offer was made by Phil Knight. The team remains not for sale." In 2021, Forbes listed the Blazers' value at $2.05bn in 2021. It's believed that the offer made by Knight and Smolinisky landed in that range.
Knight has also had a long relationship with Adam Silver, the NBA Commissioner. However, Knight and Smolinisky aren't the only groups looking to purchase the Trail Blazers.
At the annual news conference before the beginning of Game 1 of the NBA Finals, Silver commented on the Trail Blazers. At one point he discussed that the team will have to be sold eventually.
Silver said: "I don't know all the specifics of Paul Allen's trust. What I understand is that Jody Allen, who is Paul Allen's sister, is the trustee of the estate and that at some point, the team will be sold."
Silver continued: "I don't have any sense of the precise timing. I read that same statement today in which she or someone on behalf of the estate said the team is not currently for sale. But at some point it will be for sale. This is a hugely complex estate, and although it's been several years, these things take time."
Knight, who is 84 years old, is considered to be one of the 25 richest people in the United States and is worth over $50bn. He became the CEO of Nike in 2016 after 52 years of running the company.