Will Owners Approve Mikhail Prokhorov?

Before the New Jersey Nets can officially be called his, the Russian must receive the approval of his fellow billionaires: “To complete the deal, Prokhorov will have to win the approval of at least 23 of the N.B.A.’s 30 owners, which may not be easy, even for a tycoon who capitalized on Russia’s shift of state enterprises to private ownership in the 1990s. On Wednesday, he will try to make a positive impression on some of the owners during a meeting of the league’s advisory and finance committee in Manhattan. Like any prospective owner, Prokhorov will be investigated by the N.B.A. and a security firm that specializes in risk management. They will try to ascertain his net worth, debts, character, associates, personal history and integrity. The process is designed to rule out inappropriate buyers who lack financial clout or present public-relations risks to the league … The investigation is expected to tap into Russian police, military, diplomatic and intelligence sources, some from the former K.G.B., as well as his partners, competitors and customers.”