Milwaukee Bucks co-owner Marc Lasry has agreed to sell his stake in the team for a $3.5 billion valuation to Cleveland Browns owners Jimmy and Dee Haslam, according to ESPN and The Athletic.
The Bucks’ sale price, the third largest in American professional team sports history, must first be approved by the NBA.
Milwaukee’s valuation is the second-highest in league history. New Phoenix Suns owner Matt Ishbia just took control of the team after buying it from Robert Sarver at a $4 billion valuation.
The Denver Broncos were sold last year for the highest price of any team. The NFL franchise was sold for a record $4.65 billion valuation.
The Haslams will be the new co-owners of the Bucks with co-owner Wes Edens. In 2014, Edens and Lasry purchased the Bucks for $550 million and pledged $100 million toward a new arena for the Bucks. Former Sen. Herb Kohl, who sold the Bucks to Edens and Lasry, pledged $100 million of his own money in the sale toward what would become Fiserv Forum in downtown Milwaukee.
Haslam Sports Group will become one of a few ownership groups that control both NBA and NFL franchises. Stan Kroenke owns the Los Angeles Rams, and his company Kroenke Sports & Entertainment is in control of the Denver Nuggets. Gayle Benson owns both the New Orleans Pelicans and New Orleans Saints. The Seattle Seahawks and Portland Trail Blazers are both owned by Jody Allen.
The Bucks are only two years removed from winning the championship. Milwaukee is one of the favorites to win the 2023 NBA Finals.
Giannis Antetokounmpo is the face of the franchise and arguably the best player in the NBA.