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Sale of NJ Nets to Russian billionaire complete

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NEW YORK — The sale of the New Jersey Nets to Russian billionaire Mikhail Prokhorov has been formally completed.

The financial transaction was closed at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, the team announced in a statement. That came a day after Mikhail Prokhorov's purchase of the team was approved by NBA's owners, who welcomed the first non-North American into their club.

Russia's richest man agreed to buy 80 percent of the Nets and 45 percent of an arena project in Brooklyn from developer Bruce Ratner late last year. Final approval of the sale was delayed until the state of New York had taken over all the land seized under eminent domain at the site of the team's Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

The long-delayed 18,000-seat arena should open in 2012.