Leslie Alexander sells Rockets to Tilman Fertitta.
Houston Rockets owner Leslie Alexander has agreed to sell the team to Houston billionaire Tilman Fertitta for an NBA-record $2.2 billion. Alexander announced that the team was for sale earlier this year and Houston-native, Beyonce, was reportedly one of the investors who was interested in buying a stake in the team.
According to ESPN, Forbes Magazine valued the Rockets franchise this past February at $1.65 billion -- good for eighth in the NBA -- with revenues of $244 million. The $2.2 billion selling price will eclipse the previous NBA-record of $2 billion which was set when Steve Ballmer purchased the Los Angeles Clippers back in 2014.
The new owner of the Houston Rockets, Tilman Fertitta, is the owner of Landry's Inc. which is one of the nation's biggest restaurant corporations, and he has told KRIV-Fox 26 that he plans to keep the Rockets in Houston. ESPN's Darren Rovell reports that Fertitta originally tried to buy the Houston Rockets in 1993 for $81 million, but he was outbid by $4 million.
In addition to the front office changes, the Houston Rockets will be trotting out a new-look team on the court this season, which includes a dynamic backcourt duo of Chris Paul and James Harden. The Rockets acquired Paul this offseason via a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers after he informed the team he'd be leaving as a free agent. The 32-year old, nine-time All-Star, was sent to Houston for a haul of players including Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, Sam Dekker, Montrezl Harrell, Darrun Hilliard, DeAndre Liggins, Kyle Wiltjer, a protected first-round pick next year and cash considerations.
The new-look Rockets will tip-off the 2017-18 NBA season on opening night, October 17th, against the defending champion Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena.