While some loyal A’s supporters are still fanning themselves after being swooned by the latest renderings of the super awesome proposed waterfront baseball palace, a new report brings more exciting news that’s sure to get the attention of the beleaguered fan base.
The East Bay Express has sources saying that Warriors owners Joe Lacob (pictured above, mid-”oh” face) and Peter Guber are among those interested in buying the A’s from Lew Wolff and John Fisher and making the waterfront ballpark in Oakland a reality.
As the Chronicle first reported, the group behind the waterfront proposal, which centers on the Howard Terminal of the Port of Oakland, hopes to partner with current A’s ownership to build the ballpark. But as we all know, Ebenezer Wolff has indicated and continues to indicate that he isn’t interested in the Howard Terminal plan because he doesn’t believe it’s realistic. Boo this man!
That’s where the Warriors would come in. From the Express:
Yet despite being spurned by Wolff, the Rogers-Ghielmetti-Knauss-Boxer team is not willing to give up on the waterfront plan. In fact, sources tell us the group knew full well that Wolff might reject their proposal. As such, they made contingency plans and have been shopping around the Howard Terminal proposal for potential investors, identifying at least three groups who are interested in buying the A’s and building the Howard Terminal ballpark themselves, sources say. And one of these groups, sources say, is led by Warriors’ owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber — two wealthy men who had tried to buy the A’s previously.
Assuming that is all true, here’s what we already know for sure: Peter Guber is currently a co-owner of the Dodgers (he was part of the Magic Johnson group that bought the Dodgers a couple years ago for, like, a kajillion and one dollars and 99 cents), a fact that, as of these words, the EB Express article makes no mention of. That’s a pretty big deal, and Guber would have to sell his ownership stake in the Dodgers if he’s at all serious about pursuing the A’s with Lacob, which doesn’t sound like that’s the case right now:
I've asked people close to Guber and they've insisted he is tied to the Dodgers and not in any A's effort. But he's a valuable liaison.
— Tim Kawakami (@timkawakami) December 18, 2013
(UPDATE, 5:39 p.m.: Oh, and there’s also this:
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) December 19, 2013
Also, Wolff and Fisher have been relentless with their insistence that they have no interest in selling the A’s. That was a point reiterated by many when news of the waterfront ballpark proposal broke. But Wolff, long steadfast in his belief that there was no room in Oakland for the A’s, recently softened on that stance. Might he do with same with his stance on the franchise’s availability?
And one more thing to wrap your head around:
— newballpark (@newballpark) December 18, 2013
Not saying Lacob and Guber are going to have to front the entirety of that bill, but wowzers. That’s a lot of money. Who woulda thunk that buying the A’s suddenly equated itself to purchasing Boardwalk in Monopoly!? (It does emphasize, though, what would be on the plate for Lacob and possibly also Guber. Remember, they still want to move the Warriors to San Francisco, which the Express says won’t impede their pursuit of the A’s. But if the Warriors end up ditching 66th Avenue and Lacob and Guber finalize a deal that keeps the A’s in town, does that mean they’re even with Oakland?)
Again, as we have emphasized constantly amid all these optimistic reports of new homes for Oakland teams, it’s important to take this latest news with a grain of salt. Until shovels are in the ground, try not to believe too much of the hype. It’s too early for anything. Your feelings won’t get hurt in the long run if you adopt a more cynical point of view.
But it’s hard to envision the Warriors ownership not having a positive impact on the A’s. It injected new life into the Warriors. What’s to say it couldn’t inject life into the A’s Oakland stadium woes?
[via East Bay Express]