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Bound to take Brooklyn Nets to a new high: Prokhorov sees great team with Irving, Durant

Center DeAndre Jordan also joined the team
Owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets Mikhail Prokhorov AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File
Owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets Mikhail Prokhorov
© AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File

MOSCOW, July 8. /TASS, Andrey Kartashov/. Two NBA superstars, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, are on their way to Brooklyn, and are bound to take the Nets to a new high, said Mikhail Prokhorov, the Russian owner of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets in an interview with TASS.

The Brooklyn Nets announced earlier this summer that it acquired NBA’s ten-time All-Star light forward Kevin Durant, who holds two NBA Champion rings, and six-time All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving, who also possesses an NBA Champion ring after winning it with the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2016.

"We have been implying maximum efforts over the past three seasons forming step by step a team with a special culture, where teamwork and the support of each other are indispensable," Prokhorov stated. "As the saying goes - one man does not make a team."

"We also do everything possible to provide our athletes with the best conditions for trainings and it implies infrastructure as well," he continued.

The club also announced earlier that it signed up three-time All-NBA center DeAndre Jordan, who currently holds NBA’s record of the best career field goal percentage (67.4%).

"Beefing up the team with new players means that we have the potential and talent to reach a new level, while preserving our key values and principles. I am sure that fans in New York and around the world will have an unforgettable time," the Russian owner added.

Last season, Brooklyn Nets finished sixth in the NBA’s Eastern Conference qualifying for the playoffs, where it lost to Philadelphia 1-4 in the first-round series.

Former Russian presidential candidate and billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov, 54, bought the then New Jersey Nets in 2010 and 45% of the shares in Barclays Center for $223 million and later relocated the club to Brooklyn, which has a large Russian-speaking population.

He owned 80% of the Brooklyn Nets and 45% of Barclays Center until December 2015, when he gained full control of the team and the sports arena. According to Bloomberg reports at that time, the Russian tycoon paid an additional $875 million in December 2015 for the club and $825 million for Barclays Center.

In April 2018, Prokhorov had sold a 49% interest in his NBA Brooklyn Nets basketball club for $1 billion to Joe Tsai, an executive vice president and co-founder of China’s biggest e-commerce company Alibaba Group.

Prokhorov remained the controlling owner of the Brooklyn Nets at least until 2021, since according to the deal, Joe Tsai has a purchase option for further shares that year.

The remaining 51% of the shares is estimated at $1.35 billion. Last year’s deal did not cover the club’s home arena, Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, which is owned by Prokhorov.