Reports of the New York Mets’ sale dying may have been premature. Steve Cohen reportedly wants to make a deal and it’s up to the Wilpons.
That report seems to hold true. Cohen has walked away from negotiations. Nobody knows the exact reason why, but reports are the Wilpons made a last-minute change to the agreement forcing Cohen to walk away after the Wilpons negotiated in bad faith.
However, all hope isn’t lost. Jon Heyman of MLB Network is reporting that Cohen hopes the Wilpons call him back.
Back to the Mets. Hear Stevie Cohen walked away when he felt the deal changed late. Word is, he hopes Mets call back though. So wouldn’t call the deal totally dead yet.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) February 5, 2020
He wants to make this deal, he just doesn’t want to work with people who work in bad faith. That’s the newest report, which has led to a lot of speculation.
Thorton McEnery of the New York Post has amended his original report. He’s now reporting that things were going smoothly until Tuesday when things changed.
McEnery is also reporting that the Wilpons wanted to stay in some level of control for longer than the previously agreed upon five years. There were also disagreements over the control of SNY, which had previously not been a part of the deal.
Considering how abruptly the deal collapsed, this could be part of a show. McEnery reports that someone close to Cohen said, “This is Steve Cohen, so this might be a negotiation. The Wilpons need this more than he does and no one is going to pay more.”
Cohen is a master negotiator. It’s how he became one of the most powerful hedge fund managers in the world. Using the media as a negotiating tactic to get the Wilpons, who need this deal, to back down isn’t unthinkable.
That said, the Wilpons are stubborn. They’ve tanked deals in a similar way before. It would be mildly surprising to see them cave and reach out to Cohen again. That’s why David Faber of CNBC believes that while the deal isn’t dead, the chances of success are slim.
He also wonders if there is another bidder out there.
— Joe DeMayo (@PSLToFlushing) February 5, 2020
No matter what happens with Cohen, it’s clear the Wilpons have to sell. They’re right up against the MLB debt ceiling and part-owner Saul Katz wants out. If they don’t sell to Cohen, they’ll likely have to sell to someone else soon.