Sports

Who Could Be The New Owner Of The Houston Rockets?

Some local business leaders are expressing interest in buying the Rockets now that longtime owner Les Alexander is selling the franchise. The Rockets are positioned to stay in Houston but the asking price won’t be cheap.

Dr. David Walsh is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Health and Human Performance at the University of Houston.

The Rockets franchise could go for about $2 billion. That’s according to Dr. David Walsh, who researches the business of sports at the University of Houston.

Speaking on Houston Matters, Walsh adds he’s not expecting any effort to move the Rockets to another city. He says for one, there’s a long-term deal with Toyota Center. And he doesn’t see any desire on the part of the NBA to relocate the team.

“I think there are too many advantages to this city as the 4th-largest market,” says Walsh. “And I think the valuation is the top eight in the league.”

So who locally has the money to buy the Rockets? Restaurateur Tilman Fertitta has expressed interest. There’s also “Mattress Mack” Jim McIngvale. He’s talking about putting together a group of investors.

But Walsh says not just anyone can come in and write a big check.

“When you’re buying a franchise you first have to get the commissioner’s approval,” says Walsh. “But most importantly, the Board of Governors of the NBA owners has to approve it.”

Les Alexander’s decision to sell the Rockets follows the acquisition of Chris Paul from the L.A. Clippers and a record-setting contract for James Harden.

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Gail Delaughter

Transportation Reporter

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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