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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor is exploring a potential sale of the NBA team.

The backdrop: This is a bizarre time to be selling a pro sports franchise, given how revenue has been battered by the pandemic and the uncertainty moving forward.

  • What he's saying: Taylor, 79, who saved the Timberwolves from a potential move to New Orleans when he bought the team in 1995, told The Athletic that he will not sell to a group that wants to move out of Minneapolis.

Potential buyers: Suitors include the Wilf family (owners of the Vikings) and real estate mogul Meyer Orbach. Franchise legend Kevin Garnett also said he's forming a group to try to buy the team.

Reproduced from Forbes; Chart: Axios Visuals

The bottom line: Recent sales of big market teams like the Nets (purchased for $2.35 billion), Rockets ($2.2 billion) and Clippers ($2 billion) have pushed the average NBA franchise value to more than $2 billion, up 476% since 2010.

  • Minnesota is near the bottom of the pack with a value of $1.38 billion, per Forbes (third-lowest). Even so, Taylor is set to recognize a massive return, given that he paid just $88 million for the team in 1995.

Go deeper

Amazon posts strong Q3 results despite ongoing pandemic costs

Photo: Ina Fassbender/AFP via Getty Images

With the pandemic driving consumers to shop online, Amazon beat analyst expectations on Thursday with its Q3 results, though its stock price didn't see much of a bump.

Why it matters: Despite incurring what it estimates was about $2.5 billion in pandemic-related costs during the quarter, Amazon's revenue grew 37% year-over-year to $96.1 billion and its profits to $6.3 billion, up 197% year-over-year.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Oct 29, 2020 - Technology

Apple sets September quarter sales record despite later iPhone launch

Apple CEO Tim Cook, speaking at the Apple 12 launch event in October. Photo: Apple

Apple on Thursday reported quarterly sales and earnings that narrowly exceeded analysts estimates as the iPhone maker continued to see strong demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

What they's saying: The company said response to new products, including the iPhone 12 has been "tremendously positive" but did not give a specific forecast for the current quarter.

Taiwan leader confirms U.S. troops on island training forces

Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei earlier this month. Photo: I-Hwa Cheng/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen told CNN Thursday that a small number of American troops are on the island for training purposes and she has "faith" the U.S. would defend the democracy against a Chinese military attack.

Why it matters: This is the first time a Taiwanese leader has publicly acknowledged the presence of U.S. troops on the self-governing island since the last U.S. garrison left in 1979, when Washington switched formal diplomatic recognition to Beijing.