Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Very Rich Man In The Running To Succeed McCourt

Not that Frank McCourt is a particularly good-looking chap, but surely there has to be a better picture out there of Steven Cohen. Or at least one that doesn't evoke images of a dying sans-helmet Anakin Skywalker.

Steven Cohen, founder of Connecticut-based hedge-fund SAC Capital Advisors, has apparently submitted a bid to MLB which, if approved, would put him in the running for the next owner of the Dodgers.

Cohen is apparently allied with Populous, an architectural firm which has helped design at least half of MLB's stadia; Arn Tellem, an "influential sports agent" who has represented Kobe Bryant, among others; and Steve Greenberg, a baseball insider. Oh, and Cohen is estimated to have a net worth of over $8B. I will take it that this is a serious bid, from a person who is a serious baseball fan and could put serious money behind it if he so chose:

Cohen is a world-class art collector. So are noted Angelenos Eli Broad and David Geffen, each of whom offered public support to Cohen on Tuesday.

"I've encouraged Steve to buy the Dodgers," Geffen said in an interview. "I think it would be good for Los Angeles and good for the Dodgers. Steve has the resources to make the team all it can be."

Said Broad in a statement: "He's a person of integrity and may well have more financial wherewithal than anyone bidding. He's a lifelong baseball fan, and from all I know, I believe he would be a responsible owner of the Dodgers and would be satisfied with nothing less than eventually winning the World Series."

Cohen explored bidding this year for a minority share of the New York Mets. If he were to buy the Dodgers, he probably would invite local investors, but for now he would be bidding against such local icons as Magic Johnson and Peter O'Malley for a team whose fans appear wary of another out-of-town owner.

"I don't think it matters one way or the other," Geffen said. "What you really need is an owner who has the resources to win, the drive to win and who cares more about winning than he cares about money. Where he lives makes absolutely no difference."

Sure, Cohen may be one who just sees monetary upside from the Dodgers, and (like Frank McCourt himself) is less interested in the team than enhancing his own net worth. On the other hand, very much unlike Frank McCourt, Cohen appears to have treasure troves of his *own* money.

The fact that he's not a native Angeleno doesn't really faze me, relative to his willingness to invest in the Dodgers (both the team and the Stadium). I'm interested to hear what Cohen has to say.

photo: Ronda Churchill / Bloomberg via Getty Images (May 11, 2011)


karina said...

Well, I don't have a problem if he wants to earn some money because it means he"ll want to put a show on the field.

ps: I also thought "why is Darth Vader wearing a suit?"

Neeebs (The Original) said...

I'm cool with a tribe member taking the Dodgers to the Show.

Dusty Baker said...

Sounds legit. Bring it.

Jason said...

Am I really the only one that chuckled at "SAC Capital Advisors"?

I wonder if he drinks a bottle of this as a nightcap each evening.

Hideo Nomo said...

"Why is Darth Vader wearing a suit?"

Karina, I read that not long after you posted it and I'm STILL laughing.