Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Group led by Magic Johnson reaches agreement to buy Dodgers

Former MSU basketball player Magic Johnson is set to become the third Spartan to actively own a professional sports team

A group led by Johnson has reached an agreement to buy the Los Angeles Dodgers for $2 billion. Dan Gilbert (Cleveland Cavaliers) and Tom Gores (Detroit Pistons) are other MSU alumni who currently own pro sports teams. Drayton McLane, who got his MBA from MSU, had owned the Houston Astros since 1993 before selling them in November.

"I am thrilled to be part of the historic Dodger franchise and intend to build on the fantastic foundation laid by Frank McCourt as we drive the Dodgers back to the front page of the sports section in our wonderful community of Los Angeles," Johnson said in a statement.

Johnson grew up in Lansing and played basketball at MSU for two seasons, winning the school's first national championship in 1979. Johnson was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers, where he spent his entire career.

Since his retirement from professional basketball in the early 1990s, Johnson has been an active businessman and owned a stake in the Los Angeles Lakers for 16 years before selling it in 2010. Johnson's group will buy the Dodgers from McCourt, who bought the team in 2004 for $430 million. Another MSU alumnus, Eli Broad, almost bought the Dodgers in 2004 and had been talked about as a possible owner this time around.

Magic Johnson on WhoSay

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