David Levy

New York Notes: Knicks, Perry, Nets, Levy

A report last month indicated that Knicks management believes the team is well positioned to trade for a disgruntled star if one becomes available, given its surplus of first-round picks and cap flexibility going forward. However, even if the Knicks are right, it’s not clear which star player may be the next to push for a trade — or when that will happen.

Looking to identify a possible target to monitor, Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News zeroes in on second-year Hawks guard Trae Young as one option. As Bondy explains, Atlanta has a 49-100 (.329) record since Young entered the league and at least one report has suggested the young star hasn’t always been on the same page as head coach Lloyd Pierce. Bondy also points to some positive comments Young made about the Knicks before the 2018 draft, when the youngster said it would be a “blessing” to be selected by New York.

While Knicks fans may enjoy dreaming about Young lighting up Madison Square Garden, Bondy’s proposal – which earned an “LOL” from Hawks beat writer Chris Kirschner of The Athletic – seems far-fetched at this point.

Young is under contract through at least 2022 and young stars rarely leave their teams at the end of their four-year rookie contracts, since they can’t reach unrestricted free agency unless they’re willing to accept a modest fifth-year qualifying offer instead of a lucrative long-term deal. That’s such a rarity that few teams even take the threat seriously — the Knicks, who dealt Kristaps Porzingis before he reached restricted free agency, are one of the only teams in recent history to trade a fourth-year star amidst rumors he’d sign his QO, and that deal hasn’t worked out especially well for them.

There’s nothing wrong with the Knicks keeping an eye on Young, but I imagine they’ll have to look elsewhere if they want to acquire a star in a trade during the next year or two.

Here’s more on the NBA’s two New York teams:

  • Having received a one-year extension from the Knicks, GM Scott Perry may only be a short-term solution for the team under new president of basketball operations Leon Rose. Danny Leroux of The Athletic takes a look at how that decision to retain Perry for a bridge year could backfire.
  • The Nets parted ways with former CEO David Levy back in November, just two months after hiring him. As Stefan Bondy of The New York Daily News reports, Levy’s stint with the franchise was short-lived because his contract stated he’d have some influence in the basketball operations department and that didn’t sit well with members of the team’s front office. According to Bondy, the “pushback” Levy received led to the Nets essentially buying him out.
  • Neither the Knicks nor Nets will open their practice facilities on Friday, and neither team has specified a target date for when that may happen, per Jeff Zillgitt and Mark Medina of USA Today.

Nets Notes: Lineups, Bryant, Claxton, Levy

As the Nets prepare for Kyrie Irving‘s return to action, the team seems to be mulling the idea of leaning more heavily on small-ball lineups, writes Brian Lewis of The New York Post. While it’s possible not all of Irving, Spencer Dinwiddie, and Caris LeVert will be in Brooklyn’s starting five, there’s a chance that all three guards could play together at the end of games.

“The big question, the big thing is who’s going to finish; that’s the one, how do you finish?” head coach Kenny Atkinson said. “We have opportunities to play small, really small, too. That’s within our possibilities. We’ll just figure it out. It’s hard to know until you have it in your hands what exactly you’re going to do.”

As Lewis notes, a lineup that features the Nets’ top three guards alongside Joe Harris at the four and Jarrett Allen at the five has only played 18 minutes together this year, but it has been one of the club’s most effective five-man units, outscoring opponents by 20.5 minutes per 100 possessions. Harris told Lewis that he “wouldn’t be surprised” if Brooklyn opts for smaller lineups more often the rest of the way.

“I would’ve never thought in my life I’d be playing power forward in the NBA, but that’s the direction the NBA is going,” Harris said. “And as the year wears on, teams are doing whatever it takes to win games. Sometimes that’s going with a smaller lineup.”

Here’s more on the Nets:

  • Alex Schiffer of The Athletic takes a look at how Travon Bryant, who had a decade-long career as a player in international leagues, has become a key member of Atkinson’s coaching staff. Bryant, who works with Brooklyn’s frontcourt players, has had an impact on rookie big man Nicolas Claxton this season. “I enjoy working with him every single day,” Claxton said. “I have to give some credit to him. He’s extremely knowledgeable of the game, and I think he’s going to be a good coach in this league for a while.”
  • Back in November, the Nets parted ways with CEO David Levy after just two months. Speaking recently to Ira Boudway of Bloomberg (hat tip to Brian Lewis of The New York Post), Nets owner Joseph Tsai explained that he and Levy had different expectations for what that job would entail. “He was already looking ahead at how to grow the J Tsai sports portfolio, but we also needed someone to do the nuts and bolts,” Tsai said. “Maybe he thought that he wanted to do something that’s bigger and he could just bring in other people to do it, and I’m of a view that before you outsource something you should do it yourself.”
  • After getting a week off for the All-Star break, the Nets will make a concerted effort to avoid a repeat of their post-Christmas-break struggles, Lewis writes in a separate story for The New York Post. Following a four-day Christmas break, Brooklyn lost seven consecutive games and 12 of 14. A similar post-All-Star run could jeopardize the club’s hold on a playoff spot.

Nets, CEO David Levy Part Ways After Two Months

Less than two months after he joined the Nets as the CEO of the franchise and the Barclays Center, David Levy and the Nets are parting ways, the team announced today in a press release. Oliver Wiesberg, the CEO of J Tsai Sports and the Nets’ alternative governor, has been named Levy’s replacement on an interim basis.

While the Nets’ announcement and a statement from Levy himself classify the move as a mutual agreement to part ways, Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg suggests in his report that the longtime Turner Broadcasting executive resigned from his new post in Brooklyn.

Levy replaced former CEO Brett Yormark in September when new owner Joe Tsai officially assumed control of the franchise from Mikhail Prokhorov. Presumably, the two sides expected the relationship to last longer than two months, so there’s likely more to the story than they’re willing to reveal at this point.

Wiesberg’s statement in the Nets’ press release may offer a hint at the circumstances surrounding Levy’s departure. That statement reads, in part: “As we enter an exciting next chapter of our organization, it’s important that ownership and management are completely aligned on our go forward plan.”

Nets Notes: Levy, Business Ventures, Projections

Nets owner Joe Tsai, who was unanimously approved by the NBA Board of Governors to take over control of the team earlier this week, believes the franchise has done an excellent job creating a winning environment.

“They established the culture, developed talent others couldn’t see, and made Brooklyn the place where the best players want to play,” Tsai said (via Brian Lewis of the New York Post). “In a great position to compete. I am thrilled to be partners with winners!”

Tsai has David Levy, who formerly lead Turner Broadcasting, overseeing his sports portfolio.

“It all starts with putting a competitive product on the floor. That means we have to win games, both in the regular season and the playoffs,” Levy said. “That’ll help us attract more fans.

“We’re going to market our stars, our team, our culture. That’s opportunities for bigger sponsors, and the foundation [GM] Sean [Marks] and [head coach] Kenny [Atkinson] built is going to help me do that.”

Here’s more from Brooklyn:

  • The Nets are looking at opportunities around esports (Brooklyn owns one of the 22 teams in the 2K League) and sports betting in order to capitalize on the increased interest in the team, Lewis relays in the same piece. Levy also tells Lewis that he intends to look into trying to re-negotiate the team’s TV deal.
  • Steve Kyler believes the Nets will finish fourth in the Atlantic Division, as he writes in a collaborative piece with the staff at Basketball Insiders. Kyler doesn’t see Kyrie Irving’s transition to the lead role in Brooklyn going smoothly.
  • In the same piece, Eric Pincus details how the Nets were creative with their financial moves this past offseason. Brooklyn negotiated a double sign-and-trade with Golden State for Kevin Durant rather than signing him outright, which allowed the team to maximize its cap space.

NBA’s Board Of Governors Unanimously Approves Nets Sale To Joe Tsai

The NBA’s Board of Governors has unanimously approved the sale of the Nets – and the Barclays Center – to Joe Tsai, the league announced today in a press release.

Tsai, who had been a minority stakeholder in the franchise, finalized a deal last month to purchase the remaining shares from Mikhail Prokhorov, but that deal required approval from the Board of Governors before it could become fully official.

“We are thrilled that Joe Tsai is becoming the principal owner and governor of the Brooklyn Nets,” NBA commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement. “In addition to being a passionate basketball fan, Joe is one of China’s preeminent internet, media and e-commerce pioneers and his expertise will be invaluable in the league’s efforts to grow the game in China and other global markets.”

In addition to formally finalizing his purchase of the Nets and their arena, Tsai has also officially installed veteran executive David Levy as the CEO of the Nets and the Barclays Center, per a team press release. Levy, the former president of Turner, will also serve as the president of J Tsai Sports, the sports investment and holding vehicle controlled by the new Nets owner.

“David brings a unique combination of sports and media know-how, strategic thinking and operating skills to our sports and entertainment business. He is an entrepreneur at heart with the experience of managing and scaling organizations, and I really look forward to working with him,” Tsai said in a statement.

For more details on the sale of the Nets to Tsai and the hiring of Levy, be sure to check out our previous stories on those moves.

Nets Hiring David Levy As CEO

The Nets are hiring longtime Turner president David Levy as their new CEO, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (via Twitter). According to Wojnarowski, Brooklyn is expected to make the hiring official after Joseph Tsai‘s purchase of the team is formally approved at the league’s upcoming Board of Governors meetings.

Levy spent 33 years with Turner before leaving his position with the company earlier this year shortly after AT&T’s acquisition of Turner and the rest of WarnerMedia. He started as an ad sales account executive with the company in 1986 before eventually ascending to the role of president in 2013.

Levy will be replacing Brett Yormark, who announced last month that he’d be stepping down from his position as CEO of the Nets and the Barclays Center. Yormark had a significant amount of control under Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov, but with Tsai taking over as the controlling owner of both the Nets and their arena, it makes sense that he’d bring in his own lead executive.

In a press release issued a month ago announcing Tsai’s deal to buy out Prokhorov, the Nets confirmed that Yormark would oversee the transition to new ownership before “departing for a new role.”