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Phoenix Suns refute report Sarver quietly putting team up for sale

Arizona Republic logo Arizona Republic 5/23/2019 Duane Rankin
a close up of Robert Sarver © Provided by Gannett Co., Inc.

The Phoenix Suns aren’t for sale.

The Suns reacted to a report by Sportsnet's John Shannon that Robert Sarver was looking to sell the NBA franchise.

The official response from the Suns on Thursday called the report "100 percent false." That statement also confirms what a league source told The Republic.

Shannon stirred things up during an appearance on KJZZ-FM where he discussed his reporting on the the Arizona Coyotes' ongoing ownership situation.

"The interesting thing now, Steve (Goldstein), is that there are a great deal of rumblings — more than rumblings — that, very quietly, Robert Sarver has put the Suns up for sale," Shannon said. " One of the issues that has always been in the Valley of the Sun — and I don't have to tell you this — is that for the size of the market, it makes no sense to have more than one arena. So if, in fact, the Suns are able to be sold in the next year or two — and it's not public yet, but he certainly has launched a very quiet, private sale message out there — maybe this is the last chance to see the Suns and the Coyotes play in one venue in the city of Phoenix. And quite frankly, it makes the most sense, period, for both organizations.

"... I can tell you that my sources are absolutely impeccable on this story about the Coyotes. And then what came to discussion last night from another story was that yes, in fact, Mr. Sarver is quietly trying to sell the basketball team as well."

Shannon also reported that there is an impending sale of the Coyotes by owner Andrew Barroway.

"I can confirm that, yes, Mr. (Andrew) Barroway will be vacating his majority position within the hockey club, will still maintain a minority position with the hockey club as the NHL and the new owners close the deal, probably between now and the board of governors [meeting] in June," Shannon said.

It's been no secret that Barroway has been seeking an investor to join the Coyotes as a minority owner. 

In January, Coyotes President and CEO Ahron Cohen addressed rumors of an immenent change of ownership in a letter to fans stating: "As I have said for months, we will continue to explore investment opportunities to better assist our team in achieving our long-term goals and organizational vision. This process has at its core one key pre-condition: any investment in our team must be laser-focused on helping the Coyotes achieve a long-term sustainable arena solution here in Arizona."

For the Suns, however, this latest twist comes months after the city council approved a $230 million renovation proposal for Talking Stick Resort Arena back in January.

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The Suns are also looking to break ground for a new practice facility this summer on 44th Street and Camelback Road in Phoenix.

The Suns introduced Monty Williams as their new head coach Tuesday at the arena after firing Igor Kokoskov following a 19-63 season, the second-worst record in franchise history.

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Phoenix Suns refute report Sarver quietly putting team up for sale

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