11/22/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Mikhail Prokhorov Offers To Buy New Jersey Nets; Russian Billionaire Would Pay For Barclays Center

The richest man in Russia, Mikhail Prokhorov, has offered to take the New Jersey Nets off the hands of developer Bruce Ratner and other team shareholders.

The 6'7" Russian basketball fansent Ratner a letter over the weekend "offering a 'symbolic amount' for the Nets in exchange for financing the construction of a new arena in New York." Under the terms of the deal, Prokhorov would loan Ratner enough money to get the troubled Barclays Center built and receive a controlling share of the team.

Prokhrov, a former nickel baron worth $9.5 billion, blogged about the proposed deal on his Livejournal page (Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn ran the post through Google translator for a rough English version).

If Prokhov were successful in taking over the team, he would become the first foreigner to own an NBA team.