A Lawsuit From A Minority Owner Alleges The Timberwolves Sale Doesn’t Require A-Rod’s Group To Keep The Team In Minnesota

As detailed in a story by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Timberwolves and Lynx minority owner Meyer Orbach has filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court in Minneapolis that alleges that majority owner Glen Taylor’s sale of the Wolves to Marc Lore and Alex Rodriguez violates the franchises partnership agreement.

Per the complaint, obtained by ESPN, Orbach alleges that Taylor has failed to honor what are called “tag along rights” for minority owners in the franchise. “Tag along rights” are supposed to allow minority owners to sell their shares before the majority owner (Taylor, in this case) sells his own.

Orbach owns more than 17 percent of the Wolves and the Lynx. In his complaint, he also alleges that despite Taylor saying differently publicly, there is no clause in the deal to prohibits the Lore-Rodriguez group from moving the teams.

The sale, per ESPN, still requires a vote of the NBA’s Board of Governors for final approval. It also expected to be completed by July 1. The language, per the report states that new ownership would have to present to an Advisory Board to relocate, but that it does not need the Advisory Board’s approval to make a move. So, in basic terms, Lore and Rodriguez could buy the team, ask the board about moving to Seattle or Las Vegas or wherever they wanted to, and can do even if the board doesn’t recommend it. Based on what Taylor has said publicly, this should, in theory be something that isn’t in line with what he wants.

This story is still developing, so it’s unclear if this will hold up the sale in any way or be altered to keep the Timberwolves and Lynx in the Twin Cities, but this certainly could complicate the process and will also make Minnesota basketball fans more nervous than they already would’ve been about the future of the franchise. Still, if there’s a silver lining for Wolves fans it is that almost all discussion about Seattle or Las Vegas getting a team has focused on expansion, as the NBA wants to use that to boost revenues. Relocating might prove difficult even if the Lore-Rodriguez group even wanted to do so, but it certainly seems as though there are few internal obstacles being placed in the way of them exploring those possibilities.