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Report: Josh Harris wants to sell 76ers, buy first NFL team in London

Jerry Colangelo, Josh Harris

Jerry Colangelo, Josh Harris


76ers owner Josh Harris said in October:

“I expect to happily be involved with the Sixers for many, many years,” Harris said. “There are no plans to sell [the team]. Our ultimate goal has not changed and that’s to bring an NBA championship to Philly.”

Has that changed?

Mitch Lawrence of Forbes:

Philadelphia Sixers billionaire owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer are gunning to own the first NFL team in London, industry sources tell Forbes.
“They’re more interested in getting the NFL in London than they are in the NBA,’’ the source said. “Their No. 1 goal is to get the NFL team in London. They want to flip the Sixers anyway.’’

This could explain the 76ers hiring Jerry Colangelo, who brings immediate credibility. But I’m not sure that’s what the team needs to complete a sale.

The 76ers play in a large market and have a low payroll and plenty of assets in the form of young players and draft picks. What more could a new owner looking to put his stamp on a team want?

Maybe they’d sell for more if they get better, but a blank slate holds appeal. A new owner could hit the ground running without first going through a teardown.

Forbes pegs Harris’ net worth at $2.3 billion and values the 76ers at $700 million. Neil deMause of Field of Schemes estimates an NFL expansion fee could be $2 billion. Flipping the 76ers could help Harris raise the funds for an NFL team.

Harris is on track to buy Crystal Palace, a London soccer team. Lawrence spins that as Harris’ attempt to enter and study the market.