MLK III Among Few Interested In Share Of Mets

Updated: 1/31/11, 6:30 a.m.

NEW YORK (WFAN/AP) — A published report Sunday said Martin Luther King III is interested in buying a share of the New York Mets.

The New York Post reported Sunday that Martin Luther King III is part of a bid that includes former Mets first baseman Ed Kranepool, Donn Clendenon Jr. and television executive Larry Meli. Clendenon’s father was MVP of the Mets’ 1969 World Series victory.

The paper quotes Meli saying the group wants to purchase 50 percent of the team and that it would be “fitting with the legacy of Jackie Robinson essentially transferring to the Mets.”

Meli said that King, who runs the King Center in Atlanta, is coming to New York this week to meet with Mets owner Fred Wilpon and his son, chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon.

Long Island businessman Martin Silver also said he wanted to meet with the Wilpons to discuss buying a piece of the franchise.


Silver, who owns the Georgi vodka brand, said he wants Mets fans to “believe again.”

“We don’t want the Yankees to get all the publicity with all the millions and millions of dollars they’re spending,” he said.

The Mets are apparently under pressure as a result of a lawsuit from the trustee trying to reclaim money for victims of the Bernie Madoff ponzi scheme. On Friday, Owner Fred Wilpon and his son, Jeff, announced they were exploring a partial sale of the team that would raise several hundred million dollars.

Fred Wilpon said the Mets were looking to sell a non-controlling interest of 20 to 25 percent and he did not envision giving up control of the franchise, which his family first bought into in 1980.

READ MORE: Mets Owner Fred Wilpon Talks Madoff Betrayal

Court-appointed trustee Irving Picard said the Mets made nearly $48 million in Madoff’s scheme. He said the Mets Limited Partnership originally invested about $523 million, but eventually withdrew about $571 million from the accounts.

In December, Picard sued dozens of entities affiliated with the Wilpons, the family real estate company Sterling Equities and Saul Katz, Fred Wilpon’s brother-in-law and partner in the Mets and Sterling. The lawsuit in federal bankruptcy court in Manhattan is under seal, and it’s not clear what the Wilpons’ potential liability is.

“Because of that uncertainty, it is prudent in my view and reasonable and appropriate for us to explore our options,” Fred Wilpon said during a conference call. “It is the right thing to do from a business perspective.”

Will the Wilpons eventually sell a piece of their stake in the Mets? Sound off in the comments below…

  • floyd bannister

    20 to 30%? what good is that going to do for the fans? The Wilpons need to be out of a CONTROLLING INTEREST for any of this to matter. All this is going to do is get them off the hook they are on now and they will go right back to doing the same thing they always do with the Mets…make money. The Wilpons are totally committed to making money. If the Mets wins that’s just a byproduct. For them it is not the number one thing. For them the Mets are just a business.

  • Huh?

    Where is he getting this money from?

    • Nicholas Stix

      It’s other people’s money. The King kids never risk a penny of their own money. They’ve lived off millions in welfare, ever since their father was assassinated, and nothing is about to change.

  • Jeff Rosen ret NYPD

    Since when was Jackie Robinson ever a Met?

  • Kurt Spitzner

    Lets see them get the dead wood wilpons out the door and put our team back on the road towards glory!

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