Mikhail Prokhorov, multi-billionaire Nets majority owner, has had a very busy year. He ran for Russian presidency and amid frustration, lost to Vladimir Putin. Prokhorov espoused some liberal, radical, pro-business political views that I honestly do not know much about. Since he has been so busy this year, it had seemed that he does not have any time to focus on running the Nets. He is now changing those perceptions about his commitment to the Nets.
Prokhorov is currently visiting New Jersey and Brooklyn. His goals during this visit are clear: to demonstrate that he is still committed to running the Nets and has not wavered on his commitment at any point this season. He also wants to be in attendance when the Nets are officially renamed the Brooklyn Nets later today.
Throughout the week, I have been tracking Prokhorov’s quotes. Here, I will list the ones that stand out most to me.
- The Nets, like the arena, is still under construction. It’s in the building stage. And I’ll keep my prediction of the championship.
- We have very good young pieces like MarShon Brooks, for example, like Gerald Green. We’re glad to have Gerald Wallace with us.
- If not for the crazy injuries this year, I’m sure we would have been in the playoffs.
- I will do my best, and I’m very committed.
- Our new name will be Brooklyn Nets, that’s why I hope we can unite New Jersey fans, Manhattan [fans], and, of course, Brooklynites.
- I think Billy [King] and Avery [Johnson] are doing a great job.
- We spoke with some professionals, and it was practically unanimous that [the Brooklyn Nets] was the right name for our team.
- [Deron Williams and I] met yesterday. We had, I think, a very good discussion. He really wants to win and I want to maybe win even more. I don’t really want to go into details, but I think, at this stage, we’re on the same page.
- It doesn’t matter whether I’m in Moscow or here in New York, because I watch usually 80 percent of the games, I read the stats for all of the games, and I have long conversations with my people with the team.
- Let the best [team owner] win [Deron Williams]. If [Mark Cuban] wins, I’ll crush him in a kickboxing throwdown.
- Prokhorov also said that it was impossible in years past to recruit players because New Jersey is not appealing.
In sum, Mikhail Prokhorov cares a lot about the Nets. He is very engaged with every aspect of the franchise: the move to Brooklyn, evaluating the team’s roster, building a top quality roster, and watching games. I think Prokhorov’s continuing commitment is one of the biggest advantages the Nets have over other NBA teams.