4:24pm: Matt Steinmetz of CSN Bay Area reports that Ellison is closer to buying the team than Heisley indicates. Steinmetz hears Ellison and Heisley may have a "handshake agreement" on a deal. A source also tells Steinmetz that the Grizzlies could get out of their arena lease as early as 2017 if attendance thresholds are not met. Joe Lacob, part of the ownership team that beat out Ellison for the Warriors, has said repeatedly he considers San Jose as part of Golden State's territory and doubts the league would give the OK to another team moving there, according to Steinmetz.
2:39pm: California software company CEO Larry Ellison has inquired about buying the Grizzlies in hopes of moving the team to San Jose, Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal reports.
Grizzlies owner Michael Heisley downplayed the possibility, saying he'd be surprised if Ellison buys the team, and cited a lease that ties the Grizzlies to Memphis and the FedEx Forum until 2021.
Heisley said talks with Ellison, whose $36 billion makes him the country's third-richest person according to Forbes magazine, are in the initial stages. Heisley said he's received several dozen other inquiries and prefers to sell the team to a Memphis buyer. The price tag Heisley has set is $350MM, according to Tillery.
Ellison, who heads up Oracle Corp., has made previous attempts in the last five years to buy the Grizzlies, according to Tillery's report, and has made unsuccessful bids for the Hornets and Warriors in recent years.