LAS VEGAS - Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov could be in line to buy Bruce Ratner's stake in the franchise and Barclays Center.
Though no firm decision had been made and nothing is imminent, Prokhorov's company, Onexim Sports and Entertainment, eventually may engage in discussions with Ratner about purchasing his shares. Ratner, who also is overseeing the redevelopment of Nassau Coliseum, owns 55 percent of the billion-dollar Brooklyn arena and 20 percent of the Nets.
"We can confirm that Onexim Sports and Entertainment is looking at various ways to restructure debt owed to the company in connection with its U.S. assets," the company said in a statement. "One possibility is the conversion of such debt into equity and consolidation of shares, but there are other scenarios also under consideration by Onexim and its partners, and no decision has yet been made."
The statement was in response to several reports about a possible buyout.
In April, speaking before the Nets' playoff matchup with the Hawks, Prokhorov suggested buying out Ratner was a possibility, although nothing was on the table at that time. He also insisted he has no intention of selling a majority stake in the franchise, admitting he had been approached by about 10 individuals wanting to purchase a minority share in the team.
Prokhorov said he was strictly gauging interest and testing the market, especially in the wake of Steve Ballmer paying $2 billion to purchase the Los Angeles Clippers.
Robinson update. The Nets announced forward Thomas Robinson underwent successful arthroscopic surgery Wednesday at the Hospital for Special Surgery to remove torn cartilage from his right knee. He's expected to be ready to participate in on-court activities before the start of training camp. Robinson was injured Monday during a workout.