Jimmy Haslam, the owner of the NFL’s Cleveland Browns, is the latest potential buyer to explore a bid for the Timberwolves, according to Scott Soshnick of Sportico.
When we last checked in on the possibility of a Timberwolves sale, former Grizzlies minority shareholder Daniel Straus was said to be in advanced discussions about a potential purchase. However, while The Straus Group did enter into exclusive talks to buy the Wolves, no agreement was reached by the time that window expired, according to Soshnick.
That doesn’t mean that Straus is out of the mix as a potential buyer — Soshnick hears that he remains in talks to potentially purchase the franchise. However, it does open the door for other bidders, such as Haslam, to enter the picture.
Haslam is the CEO of truck stop company Pilot Flying J. Multiple top executives of the company committed multi-million dollar fraud and were sentenced to jail time, but Haslam wasn’t charged as a result of that investigation and has denied any wrongdoing, Soshnick notes. Forbes estimates that the Browns owner is worth about $2.9 billion.
Haslam’s résumé as an NFL team owner likely won’t inspire much enthusiasm among Timberwolves fans — in seven full seasons since he assumed control of the Browns, the team has an overall record of 28-83-1, with no winning seasons and an 0-16 campaign (in 2017).
At least one previous report has indicated that current Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor is seeking an amount in the $1.2 billion range for the franchise. His WNBA club, the Minnesota Lynx, is expected to be part of any sale as well.