Will Smith and Wife, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Among New Owners of NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers
“West Philadelphia-born and raised” actor Will Smith and his wife, actress Jada Pinkett-Smith, are among a collective group announced as new owners of the Philadelphia 76ers at an introductory press conference in Philadelphia on Tuesday. The group will be led by New York billionaire Joshua Harris, who will act as managing owner, and suburban Philadelphia-native Adam Aron, who serves as chief executive officer. The group paid approximately $280 million collectively for the franchise.
“I can assure you we will be active, long-term owners who care deeply about this team, its performance, its fans, the city of Philadelphia,” Harris said. “We think the team is moving in the right direction and we’re very excited about it. Our goal, make no mistake, is to create a world-class franchise and win an NBA championship.”
The team also announced president Rod Thorn would take over general manager duties, and former GM Ed Stefanski would no longer be with the franchise. In addition to divulging the new owners and personnel changes, the Sixers announced significantly lower prices for single-game tickets. Select seats that cost $54 last season will be reduced to $29 this season, should there be one. The NBA is still in a lockout situation with the players’ union. No recent progress has been made to resolve the labor dispute that has already caused the league to cancel its pre-season and the first two weeks of the 2011-12 NBA schedule.