The head of FIBA, the international basketball federation, loves the idea of Mikhail Prokhorov as Nets owner. It helps internationalize the game and it's plainly an "exciting story".
He thinks it's likely to get more exciting too. "The NBA is a great machine in spinning things in a way that benefits them," Baumann told FanHouse's Tom Lorenzo. " If an investor like Prokhorov, on top of [his wealth], has glamorous attitudes and attributes, it can just be helpful..."
Beyond basketball, Baumann believes there are geopolitical reasons why things have gone so smoothly in the sale of a US team to a Russian businessman. "There's history -- Russia-United States brings back old memories (i.e. Miracle on Ice). Clearly there are business reasons for Prokhorov to do it, and there's clearly political decisions for Russia and the US to allow it. So I think it's a very interesting and exciting development."
Meanwhile, Prokhorov's sports advisor told a Russian sports site that Nets fans should be patient, but should also know, "Mikhail never engages in anything half way". Sergey Kushchenko also said approving Prokhorov was a no-brainer for NBA owners: "There is a difficult economic situation, which naturally is reflected in American sports, and here comes a bright and successful businessman who understands basketball on a global scale!"