If Knicks owner James Dolan sometimes seems disinterested or unmoved by his NBA team’s ongoing futility, it may be because he’s too preoccupied with meddling in other business ventures clear across the country. In 2012, he and MSG partner Irving Azoff, a music industry titan, purchased the old Lakers Forum in Inglewood with designs of turning it into a multi-use entertainment venue, which has set off a chain of events involving his company, the Clippers, a mayoral race, and more.
Dolan and MSG spent two years and reportedly more than $100 million in renovations, only to discover that they’ll eventually face some stiff competition in the form of the Los Angeles Clippers, whose owner Steve Ballmer plans on relocating the team to Inglewood with a new arena by 2024 that will surely siphon off some of the acts that pass through town.
Ballmer and the Clippers have been in negotiations with the city ever since on a potential deal that has garnered support from long-time mayor James Butts. But in an effort to try to regain his slippery grasp on his investment, Dolan has done just about everything in his power to sabotage those dealings, including his attempts to influence the city’s recent mayoral election by providing significant financial backing to a dubious candidate he believed would take up his mantle, while lobbying others in Hollywood to do the same.