CHARLOTTE, N.C. — NBA legend Michael Jordan's potential majority stake sale of the Charlotte Hornets seems no clearer than when reports initially came out about the possible move last week.
On Wednesday, Jordan's family office, Jump Management, released a statement on the matter, saying that it remains unclear if a deal will take place between Jordan and Gabe Plotkin, a hedge fund executive who owns a minor stake in the team.
Jump Management's full statement reads:
“Four years ago, Michael Jordan sold a stake in the Charlotte Hornets to a Gabe Plotkin-led group. As a natural step in a process due to that transaction, Michael and Gabe are in discussions about his group potentially buying an additional stake. At this time, it is unclear whether an additional sale will take place.”
News of Jordan's potential majority stake sale of the Hornets leaked on March 16 through an ESPN report. However, Jordan and the Hornets have remained quiet on any potential deal.
Jordan paid around $275 million in 2010 to gain a majority stake in the then-Charlotte Bobcats to become the only black majority owner of an NBA team. The Bobcats changed their name to the Hornets in 2014, a name held by the original Charlotte Hornets, who played from 1988 to 2002 before moving to New Orleans.
In 2019, Plotkin along with another investor bought minority stakes in the team.
NBC Sports estimates the Hornets are worth $1.77 billion, placing them as the 26th most valuable franchise of the NBA's 30 teams. Conversely, the league's most valuable franchise, the Golden State Warriors, is worth $7.56 billion.
During Jordan's time as the majority owner of the Hornets, the team has found limited success. Charlotte has only managed two playoff appearances and three winning seasons under Jordan's ownership.
The Hornets' performance over the last decade is an ironic contrast to Jordan, who is often regarded as the best player in NBA history.
Currently, the Hornets are 23-50 and are eliminated from playoff contention as they hold the fourth-worst record in the NBA. With superstar player LaMelo Ball sidelined for the season with an ankle injury, the Hornets will look to the 2023 NBA Draft and next season for better fortunes.