By Monica Alonzo
By Stephen Lemons
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Dulce Paloma Baltazar Pedraza
By Ray Stern
By Pete Kotz
By Monica Alonzo
By New Times
What would the charges be? Disorderly conduct? Whose disorderly conduct?
Would it be refusal to obey a police order? Before it can be considered a proper order by a judge, it must be proved to be a legitimate one.
Does a police officer have the right to banish a legitimate newspaper person from covering a story for his publication? Press credentials specifically state they are to permit the bearer to cross through police lines. Colangelo knows about high-finance. He is, in fact, the acknowledged Uriah Heep of the NBA. He has learned how to make money without risking his own.
We have learned one thing about him.
He thinks the citizens of this city owe it to him to spend millions of their tax dollars on a new downtown arena for him.
If the city council doesn't do this, Colangelo has threatened to leave. If councilmembers do engage in this monstrous giveaway of tax funds without input from the voters, they should be voted out of office.
Perhaps I should take the easy way.
I'll write only positive things about Colangelo and ignore his questionable business tactics.
I'll bow and scrape to Barry Ringel, his official sycophant. Perhaps then I'll once again be admitted to Colangelo's vaunted presence.
I must go back to the question of who really owns the Phoenix Suns. The team was purchased by Colangelo's group at the enormous price of $54.5 million. Colangelo runs the franchise, of course. But he's really little more than a front man.
Look to the courtside rows at the big games, and you can pretty well tell who the silent partners are.
Thanks to Van De Voorde's reporting we have, for the first time, a clear picture of the ownership. There are actually ten different partnerships involved. This could cause big trouble at some future date.
There is, for example, a $34 million loan from the Arizona Bank, as well as a loan for $2.5 million from the team's previous owners, for which the interest payments could come to $3.6 million a year.
For the purchase, the Greyhound Corporation came up with $6 million, and Keith Turley's gang came up with another $4 million. With Greyhound, Arizona Public Service and the Arizona Bank all deeply involved in the purchase, you can see why they want a new downtown building for the Suns. They call that urban packaging.
Here's a list of the annual Suns' player salaries that must be met this year:
Tom Chambers, $1.8 million; Armon Gilliam, $900,000; Eddie Johnson, $875,000; Tim Perry, $600,000; Kevin Johnson, $575,000; Dan Majerle, $475,000; Mark West, $412,000; Jeff Hornacek, $260,000; Tyrone Corbin, $200,000; Ed Nealy, $150,000; Steve Kerr, $100,000. No salary is yet available for T.R. Dunn, but he was reputedly making $400,000 at Denver.
The salaries are high.
For example, former Suns star Walter Davis gets $600,000 at Denver while Larry Nance is paid $800,000 at Cleveland.
Chambers, one of the highest-paid players in the NBA, makes more than Nance and Davis combined. Since Chambers is white, he's clearly worth the extra money to Colangelo. Compare Chambers' $1.8 million with the following superstar salaries:
Moses Malone of Atlanta, $1.5 million; Larry Bird of Boston, $1.8 million; Kevin McHale, Boston, $1.3 million; Michael Jordan, Chicago, $2 million; Isiah Thomas, Detroit, $1,100,000; Ralph Sampson, Golden State, $1.9 million; Magic Johnson, Lakers, $3,142,000; and Karl Malone, Utah, $1,350,000.
Talk about life in the fast lane . . .