Self-styled journalism watchdog John Helmer absorbed Stephanie Humber and Yuriy Humber’s recent profile of aspiring Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov for Bloomberg.com and recognizes the pair for “the athletic feat of reporting Prokhorov™s all-win business career without detecting a single foul, penalty, or loss.” Somebody please forward this to Jeff Van Gundy (Dances With Bears link courtesy Ball In Europe)
“ regarding Mr Prokhorov™s transactions with Mr Ratner for the Nets basketball franchise and the Brooklyn arena and real estate development, you refer to œProkhorov™s love of sports [as] part of the reason he wants to buy the Nets. He says he originally went after the New York Knicks because of their Manhattan base. You also claim that the Brooklyn arena part of the transaction has been œheld up for six years because of legal battles with local residents opposed to the new development. Is it your view that Mr Prokhorov has succeeded in acquiring both the team franchise, and the real estate project? Are you unaware of the reports that Mr Prokhorov cannot close his deal for the team and for his share in the arena with Mr Ratner, until Mr Ratner has vacant possession of the properties standing in the way of the arena. and he does not have those yet. Are you aware that the borrowings Mr Prokhorov has said he will undertake for the transaction are also contingent on this? Are these reports incorrect, and that is why you did not report them? What evidence do you have that Mr Prokhorov and Mr Ratner can close their deal soon?
“ there are two other omissions of the record of Mr Prokhorov, which your article reveals. Have you omitted recent statements by high-ranking Russian and US officials, casting negative light on Mr Prokhorov™s character and business practices, because you were intending to do, or had agreed with Mr Prokhorov, to do a promotion? Or because you were unaware of the officials and their criticisms? . The first of the criticisms of Mr Prokhorov came from the Prime Minister of Russia, Vladimir Putin, who criticized him for his management of the utility company TGK-4 for what might ” in another country or in another medium than Bloomberg Markets ” be called investment contract violations or cash stripping. Mr Putin made his statement on February 24. Also, according to Admiral Dennis Blair, the US Government™s Director of National Intelligence, Mr Prokhorov™s line of business in precious metals makes him susceptible to, or a witting party to, the œgrowing nexus in Russian and Eurasian states among government, organized crime, intelligence services, and big business figures. An increasing risk from Russian organized crime is that criminals and criminally linked oligarchs will enhance the ability of state or state-allied actors to undermine competition in gas, oil, aluminum, and precious metals markets. Admiral Blair made this and related statements in testimony to the US Senate Select Committee on Intelligence on February 2. Did you miss it?