Thursday, November 06, 2008

Listening to Yormark: sports reporter says Brooklyn deal is a go

In the Big Lead sports blog, sports reporter Dave D'Alessandro of the Newark Star-Ledger said he thinks the Brooklyn move will happen--though his source is not exactly reliable.

Q: Will the Nets ever make it to Brooklyn? The delays have us thinking no. If that’s the case, then do you think LeBron stays in Cleveland, or winds up with the Knicks? Or can you imagine him playing in New Jersey? Is there even a darkhorse for his services, or is he the type who bigger-than-sports star must be in one of the NBA’s major markets, like LA, Chicago, or NY?

His response: The political momentum is such that there may be no turning back at this point, and the linchpin in this deal – sharp guy named Brett Yormark – asserts that the financing is there, and that his partners are content to see it through. Even Barclays, which actually turned down Gordon Brown’s handout, seems to be hanging in there. Maybe that’s just a company line, but the signs are that they’re still going to break ground. . . . uh, some time in the coming century. And yes, it would appear silly for LBJ to make the leap without a guarantee that he’ll be out of Jersey within weeks after signing any deal with Team JayZ, unless it involves a secret chunk of the equity that would get him to cool his heels for a while. Otherwise, how can anyone seriously be sold on playing in Jersey?

While I agree that the "Atlantic Yards is dead" meme is way overstated, I also think anything Yormark says should be taken with a grain of salt. After all, he's the guy who last year said the arena would break ground in the fall of 2007 and open in 2009. Now groundbreaking might happen next year and 2012 is a more likely best-case scenario for an arena opening.

(Here are some comments on NetsDaily.)

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