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Report: Sixers owners to announce purchase of NHL’s Devils

Aug 15, 2013, 8:00 AM EDT

Anthony Brodeur AP

We told you a few days ago that Joshua Harris and the rest of the Sixers ownership group was closing in on a deal to purchase the New Jersey Devils of the NHL.

They should cross that finish line and have the deal announced Thursday, reports John Gonzalez at The Prudential Center in Newark where the Sixers played (and the Nets did briefly) would be part of the deal.

The report adds that Sixers CEO Scott O’Neil will have the same role with the Devils, he will oversee both franchises.

The purchase price of the Sixers is not known (yet). Forbes estimated them at $205 million but teams have been sold for much more than those projections recently. There is also the question of how much debt the Harris group takes on in this deal — current Devils owner Jeff Vanderbeek is reportedly $230 million in debt. Harris and his group will take on likely most of that.

This in no way means the Sixers are moving — their lease has them locked in Philly for a long time.

What would this mean for the Sixers? Probably nothing. While there are some efficiencies of scale that owning two professional sports franchises can provide on the business side, there should be no impact in basketball operations. That’s where Sam Hinkie has undertaken a “getting worse to get better” philosophy, and has hired coach Brett Brown to oversee the rebuild.

  1. eagleempire - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:20 AM

    This is a disgrace! Ed Snyder (Flyers owner) should be tearing the paint off the walls at the Wells Fargo Center. I will no longer go to Sixers games as long as Josh Harris is the owner. For an owner of a franchise in a city like Philadelphia to purchase another franchise that is a major rival for the team you share the building with….this is TOTALLY reprehensible! Move the basketball franchise to Newark and leave our 76ers name and colors behind. Get the hell out Josh!!! YOU ARE DISGUSTING!!!

  2. deadeyedesign23 - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:37 AM

    When did the 76ers play at the Prudential Center?

  3. lorddarkhelmet - Aug 15, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    I haven’t had my coffee yet but I am pretty sure this is poorly written. maybe switch Sixer’s with Devils a couple times?

  4. trevormcnamara - Aug 15, 2013 at 9:55 AM

    Article gets pretty confusing when you mix the teams up

  5. darrkkomens - Aug 15, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    Here we go again……. are the Sixers going to be treated like the step-child again like we were under the Comcast/Snider group?

    and the Sixers only played at the Prudential Center as visitors

    • ryanrockzzz - Aug 15, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      Exactly….many people in Philly are giving the old, “Well who cares?”

      For years the Sixers were the stepchild, never receiving the financial or structural support they needed under Ed Snider. Harris comes in, professes his love for Philadelphia, the community, and all that, and now purchases the rival team, and the arena. Beings that he nows has more on the line with the Devils, instead of just being a tenant in the Wells Fargo Center, it is easy to see this happening. Harris also lives in New York and wasn’t even present for the press conference to announce Brett Brown yesterday, certainly not lending any evidence he’s going to be “all-in” with the Sixers

      Fans will get over this in time, but the best hope is Harris funds the Sixers well and stays out of the way. Hopefully the Sixers money doesn’t leave them still operating on a tight budget, while the Devils amass success and beat the Flyers in the playoffs…partially from Sixer and Philly fan money.

  6. jimmywho14 - Aug 15, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    Everything about this is confusing! How can the owner of the Sixers go and buy one of the Flyers biggest rivals? I just can’t understand what Harris is thinking. I guess he won’t be getting invites to Snider’s Christmas party at the Center

  7. rohlo - Aug 15, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    thye should move the devils to houston..brand new state of the art arena! reminds me of when rockets owner leslie alexander bought the edmonton oilers.thye were gonna move them to houston,but he gave the city of edmonton a chance to keep them and their history by allowing them to try to find local owners..pretty classy actually!

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