Rick Pitino and Jamal Mashburn are looking to team up again, this time to buy a French basketball team.
According to La Republique des Pyrenees, Pitino, Mashburn, and former New York Knicks coach Stu Jackson are interested in purchasing French Jeep Elite Pro A team Elan Bearnais Pau-Lacq-Orthez, EBPL.
Pitino later confirmed the report to Greek website Gazzetta, adding that it’s part of a long play to bring back the Seattle SuperSonics.
“I am part of the group looking for a way to bring back the Seattle SuperSonics to the NBA,” Pitino said. “My suggestion was to first purchase a team in Europe for us to gain relevant experience.”
According to the report, negotiations were launched “several months ago” and a final agreement is close.
Pitino, who was hired as the head coach at Iona back in March 2020, coached for Panathinaikos – a Greek professional basketball team – from 2018 to 2020. Among other coaching opportunities, Pitino was the head coach at Kentucky from 1989-1997, winning a title with the program in 1996.
As for Mashburn, the Wildcat legend played under Pitino at Kentucky from 1990 to 1993, earning consensus First Team All-America honors and being named SEC Player of the Year as a junior.
Now, the legendary duo is set to team up as owners of a professional basketball team.