A few weeks back we noticed that Mark Cuban and Jim Crane wanted their millions back for trying to buy the Texas Rangers out from under Chuck Greenberg and Nolan Ryan (and Ray Davis and Bob Simpson). Long story short: Cuban and Crane, as Radical Pitch LLC, figured they're owed a refund since they drove up the team's price tag from $493.5 million to $593 million, with which the creditors oughta be delighted. Those fer and agin the request were to file their say-sos with the court by the end of last week.
The so-called Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders, led by New York-based Monarch Alternative Capital, is totally fine with Cuban and Crane's request -- so much so that, per the Texas Rangers Baseball Partners Information site set up upon Hicks Sports Group's voluntary Chapter 11 filing on May 24, they filed in Fort Worth bankruptcy court a statement in support of their demands. Among their reasons:
In addition to the increase in the gross sales price by nearly $100 million, the participation of the Applicants further permitted TRBP's bankruptcy case to proceed expeditiously to confirmation without additional expensive, protracted confirmation litigation, which would certainly have ensued had TRBP failed to hold a competitive auction for the sale of the Texas Rangers baseball team.
The second-lien lenders, however, have filed with the court an objection to the duo's request. Says a doc filed last week:
That auction was instrumental in maximizing the recoveries for the benefit of the estate and resulted in an increase to the purchase price of approximately $100 million.3 However, notwithstanding the success of the auction to the Debtors' estates, an unsuccessful bidder that participated in the auction is not entitled to reimbursement of its fees and expenses pursuant to section 503(b) of the Bankruptcy Code.
Cuban, of course, bought up $5 million in the Rangers' second-lien debt prior to the bankruptcy filing in May. There was a status conference yesterday in Judge Michael Lynn's court, but hearings on the request aren't scheduled till November.
In related news, Tom Hicks will be at Game One tomorrow night in San Francisco. Says he to Richard Durrett regarding the team's success thus far:
"I'm happy, but it's bittersweet. There's no denying that. "I tried the last few years to pay of HSG's debt, but the only way to do it was to sell the teams. I never thought it would turn into the fight in court, but I wonder what might have happened had we not done what we did in June."