According to NBA analyst Nick Wright, Phoenix Suns owner Robert Sarver’s recent announcement that he plans to sell the Suns is likely to have a widespread effect on the NBA. His decision comes after 18 years of alleged workplace misconduct. However, Sarver’s incompetency as an owner goes far beyond his misconduct as he is also known to be an extremely cheap owner.
On a recent episode of “What’s Wright? With Nick Wright,” NBA analyst Nick Wright was asked how Sarver selling the Suns could impact the league. He said:
“They’re talking about Jeff Bezos might want to buy or Larry Ellison, the Oracle guy. Having, even by rich guy standards, one of the richest guys buy a team, absolutely can change the landscape.
“It’s not just you changing the organizational culture, it’s that everything will be nicer. Facilities will be nicer. You’re not going to worry about the luxury tax.”
Wright then recalled some of Sarver’s cheapest moments as an owner. This includes the time Sarver sold a first round pick when the Suns were trying to make a Finals run in the mid 2000s. Sarver could have traded the pick for roster reinforcements but instead, he decided to save money and that Suns core never made it to the Finals.
More recent examples of Sarver’s cheapness include him consistently refusing to pay luxury tax. He also refused to give former first pick Deandre Ayton a maximum contract extension last year.
Wright is certainly correct that having an owner who is willing to go above and beyond could make a huge difference for the Suns. It could prove to be the deciding factor for Chris Paul, Devin Booker and Deandre Ayton reaching the NBA Finals.
What would it take for LeBron James to buy an NBA franchise?
Continuing on the topic of Robert Sarver selling the Suns, Nick Wright also brought up superstar LeBron James’ desire to buy a NBA team. He mentioned that it would be interesting to know how much money James needs to buy a team. Wright also brought up an interesting question regarding James’ future plans. He said:
“Are they going to have to buy a team or is the NBA going to expand to Vegas and Seattle, and you just have to pay a franchise fee? Because as rich as Bron is, he doesn’t have multiples of billions. So I know he could have a group around him, but I think it’s going to be very interesting to see what this team sells for.”
It will certainly be fascinating to see James’ retirement plans and if he is interested in buying a basketball team. Likewise, it will be interesting to see which franchise James targets and what his ownership style looks like.