Sunday, September 7, 2014
Another Jewish NBA owner to sell team because of racist emails against blacks
For Atlanta Hawks controlling owner Bruce Levenson, "a light bulb went off." In a 2012 email addressing the troubles the franchise faced in attracting more affluent white season-ticket holders, Levenson said that he had taken a look around Philips Arena and noticed a few things. First, the audience was 70% black, he wrote. But that wasn't all. The stadium's bars were 90% black. There were few fathers and sons at the games. The cheerleaders were black. The music played in the arena was hip-hop, and the after-game concerts were either rap or gospel acts. "Then i start looking around at other arenas. It is completely different. Even (Washington) DC with its affluent black community never has more than 15 pct black audience," he wrote. Now, he's losing his franchise because of the email. Levenson, who serves as managing partner and is the team's representative on the NBA Board of Governors, announced in a statement that he will sell his controlling stake in the team after an "e-mail two years ago that was inappropriate and offensive."