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Sunday , Aug , 07 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

What will Alex Meruelo mean for ATL Hawks?

Businessman Alex Meruelo has reached an agreement to buy a majority ownership stake in the Atlanta Hawks, he told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution in an exclusive weekend interview.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Three things worth noting about the Atlanta Hawks' new owner.

First, a good organization has a good owner. It starts with the man at the top having clear expectations with respect to professionalism, attitude, and desire.

After years of poor play, the Hawks have recently become a good team. However, the LLC Spirit wasn’t committed to winning - they were too busy suing each other and cutting costs - so they weren’t a good organization.

Hopefully, Meruelo, also known as The California Pizza King, models what he expects from players, so the Hawks become a good organization.

Second, the NBA is a diverse league. Meruelo would be the league's first Hispanic owner, which is a positive.

Third, the NBA is in a nasty lockout because owners claim the business model is broken. Yet, there’s a willing buyer, Meruelo, for a weaker franchise, the Hawks, in a city, Atlanta, that doesn’t provide overwhelming support for its teams.

I’m curious to see what, if any, impact this has on future labour negotiations.

--Oly Sandor.

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