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Mike Ilitch interested in buying Detroit Pistons to keep them in Michigan

Mike Ilitch’s statement (via the Detroit Free Press):

"Marian and I grew up here, we raised our family here and we built our businesses here. Detroit is our home. When I read in the paper there was the chance that this great sports town could lose one of its professional sports franchises, I just didn’t see how we could let that happen.

"The Pistons, just like the Red Wings, Tigers and the Lions, have a rich and storied tradition in this community and they’ve brought pride to fans and our community.

"You all know I love sports – all sports, from amateur sports to the various pro sports we’ve had the privilege to be involved with, and like a lot of others I’m sure, I really want to see the Pistons remain the Detroit Pistons.

"We talked about it internally and when you take our 33 years of experience in professional sports, our commitment to this community, our passion for winning and pursuing championships, and you couple that with the opportunity to have a local, engaged owner for the Pistons, we decided to take a run at it.

"We believe we could bring a lot to the table that could be tremendously positive for the Pistons franchise, the NBA, and the fans of this community.

"So, today, we formally notified the Detroit Pistons that we have interest in purchasing the team. This is a required first-step and we look forward to the opportunity to move forward in the process."


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  • Aug 9, 20101:32 pm
    by Laser


    i don’t doubt for a second that the illitches’ public desire for a new downtown arena is an unspoken factor in their sudden interest in the team.
    but i don’t want to get a reputation as a cynic around here. this is great news all around.

  • Aug 9, 20101:44 pm
    by DoctorDaveT.com


    Man, Oh Man, Oh Man, Oh Man!!
    This has gotta be “sweet rhapsody” to anybody with a heartbeat in the state of Michigan – or from the state of Michigan. Was there ever a match more made in heaven?
    Mr. D was a GREAT sports owner (can you say “Roundball 1″?); and the Illitches are right there.
    The Illitches get to buy a premiere franchise at a discount (everyone knows Karen wants out – bad for resale prices); and Michigan gets to keep the Pistons! Heck – they might even become the “Detroit” Pistons again.
    Kudos! Let’s make this happen NOW.

  • Aug 9, 20104:55 pm
    by tads


    I think what we are doing now is we are waiting to see if someone else is going to hop into this thing and make it interesting.  If no other teams want to buy the price will be low, the process will be faster, and hopefully the leftover money will go towards the roster.

  • Aug 9, 20105:02 pm
    by The Rake


    I would hate to see the Palace go, and having the Wings/Pistons share an arena is kinda weak (but necessary)- BUT this is spectacular news for Pistons fans. The Illitches HAVE to buy the team. Nobody gets Detroit more than they do…they are really the most logical AND BEST, choice.

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