Yesterday, J. Bruce Miller, a Louisville attorney and front-man in the effort to bring an NBA team to Louisville, met with NBA commissioner David Stern about the prospects of a team moving to the Derby city.
According to Sheldon Shafer of the Louisville Courier-Journal, those talks were positive.
LOUISVILLE, KY – “I think it looks very good” for having an NBA team in Louisville, perhaps as early as this fall, Miller said in an afternoon phone interview while he was waiting in Stern’s office to talk to the commissioner.
He affirmed he has been in talks with a foreign-based investment group that has expressed interest in backing an NBA franchise in Louisville, but he declined to name the investors or country.
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He said his negotiations have focused on the foreign investment group’s paying for all or most of the cost to renovate the 55-year-old Freedom Hall as a home base for the team.
He said, however, that conversations with Stern about a local NBA team playing at the new KFC Yum! Center might take place, even though he said it appears that “all the revenue streams are tied up” at the downtown arena, where the University of Louisville has first choice on dates and other rights.
Miller said he “would be guided” by Stern’s advice in deciding what information he could make public and when he could release any news. “It’s his league and his group of franchises, and he is entitled to decide how he wants the information to be disseminated,” said Miller, who has headed up at least three previous unsuccessful attempts since the late 1990s to persuade a pro basketball team to move to Louisville.
Miller did acknowledge that the negotiating of a collective bargaining agreement in the NBA is making things a bit more difficult.
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Miller said the fact that the NBA needs to negotiate a new collective-bargaining agreement with its players is complicating his recruitment effort. “It has an unusual bearing on what we’re doing,” he said, but declined to elaborate.
Courtesy of the Courier-Journal
This should be exciting news for Louisville. Instead you get animosity on the C-J’s comment section. I don’t want to give these pessimists any extra pub, so click the link above and read the comments if you’re interested.
I know I’ve said this over-and-over regarding the NBA to Louisville, but why is Louisville such a pessimistic city? Why is there such fear of growth? I don’t get it. Indy got an NBA team instead of Louisville in the late 70′s. Their city is doing just fine. A Final Four last year. The Super Bowl next.
Take a chance. Give your city an opportunity to grow.
And give J. Bruce Miller credit for having a vision and passion. The man has been trying to accomplish something huge for his city for the last thirty-plus years. His fight to bring an NBA team to Louisville has resembled a fight with Louisville icon Muhammad Ali. He has been knocked to the mat several times, but every one of those times he got right back up and continued to fight. More often than not, his tireless effort has led to disappoinment, yet here he is trying one more time to make it happen, and it looks like we’re getting close.
We need you behind this effort. Right now we have over 7,000 fans on a Facebook fan page, urging the NBA to come to Louisville. The base is there. We just need the positive shouts to be louder than the negative ones.
If we can do that, we can make this thing happen.