Alibaba co-founder Joseph Tsai is close to signing a record $2.35-billion deal to acquire the remaining 51 percent of the Brooklyn Nets from Mikhail Prokhorov and become the sole owner of the franchise, sources told The New York Post's Josh Kosman and Brian Lewis.
Tsai purchased 49 percent of the Nets last year for $1 billion. The Taiwanese-Canadian was given an option to buy the remaining 51 percent ahead of the 2021-22 season for $1.35 billion but this reported agreement will expedite the purchase.
The $2.35-billion figure becomes the most expensive purchase for a North American sports franchise, surpassing the $2.2-billion acquisitions of the Carolina Panthers and Houston Rockets - both in 2018.
Brooklyn was among the NBA's most surprising teams last season, as it finished in sixth place in the Eastern Conference to snap a three-year playoff drought.