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N.J. Nets owner Mikhail Prokhorov to run for president of Russia

December 12, 2011 |  1:49 pm


Mikhail Prokhorov, the billionaire owner of the New Jersey Nets, said Monday that he will run for president of Russia against Vladimir Putin. Elections will be held in March.

Prokhorov said he is running because "society is waking up…. Those authorities who will fail to establish a dialogue with the society will have to go."

Prokhorov was head of Just Cause, a Kremlin-sanctioned liberal party, until September, when he was forced out. Afterward, Prokhorov accused top Kremlin official Vladislav Surkov of being a “puppeteer” and the Kremlin of orchestrating his departure.

"I can solve that problem by becoming his boss," Prokhorov said Monday of Surkov.

Prokhorov has to get 2 million signatures to get on the ballot.

"For the last  2 1/2 months we sat and worked, very calmly and quietly, and we created all the infrastructure to collect 2 million signatures,” he said.

An NBA official told that the league would not be opposed to Prokhorov's becoming president of Russia and owning an NBA team.


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Photo: Is this the next president of Russia? Credit: Mike Stobe / Getty Images.