Unsuccessful in her bid to buy a piece of the Los Angeles Clippers, the question remains: Is Las Vegas powerhouse Elaine Wynn looking to take another shot?
She’s not saying what might be next on her shopping list, but she shot down a local report that she was among those who pursued The Cosmopolitan.
“No interest in Cosmo,” she said in an email on Saturday. “I’m happily a significant owner of the Wynn!”
Her group, headed by Oprah Winfrey, music mogul David Geffen and Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, finished second in the bidding to Steve Ballmer, who left as Microsoft’s CEO four months ago with a net worth of $20 billion.
The runner-up group reportedly bid $1.6 billion.
Ballmer reportedly won the franchise with a $2 billion bid.
“We came close, close but no cigar,” Wynn said. “Love Doc Rivers and that team. Wishing them the best. They are a class act.”
Her group also included Guggenheim Partners executives Todd Boehly and Mark Walter; Laurene Powell Jobs, widow of late Apple co-founder and tech visionary Steve Jobs; and music producer Jimmy Iovine.
Wynn, a basketball fanatic, has the financial portfolio to play with the big boys.
She walked away from a 2010 divorce from Steve Wynn with reportedly more than $700 million. That has since grown to $3 billion, according to Forbes’ 2014 list of the world’s wealthiest.
She remains on the board of Wynn Resorts, sits on the board of the Basketball Hall of Fame and is president of the Nevada State Board of Education.
She was among the “Gucci Row” crowd at UNLV games during the Runnin’ Rebels’ glory years and befriended Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski and his wife Mickie. When the USA Basketball team won gold at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, team member Jason Kidd gave her his gold medal.
BILL MEDLEY’S BIG GAMBLE
Bill Medley admits to playing with fire — risking life, limbs and his friendship with Frank Sinatra — in his new book “The Time of My Life.”
The Righteous Brothers star got a little extra friendly with one of Frank’s girls and could have lost more than that lovin’ feelin’.
Medley and his partner, Bobby Hatfield, had hit it big and landed in Las Vegas in 1965 on the strength of their monster hit, “You’ve Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’.”
They were the rare rock act that got a shot in Las Vegas. But it took Sinatra’s OK to get them the lounge deal at the Sands.
Long lines quickly greeted The Righteous Brothers and Sinatra would often bring his Hollywood friends to the lounge after his show in the main room.
Medley and Sinatra’s conductor Quincy Jones hit it off and would hang out at the gambling tables.
One night Jones flew in a girl who was staying in Sinatra’s suite. She let it be known she had an interest in Medley and Jones passed along word that she was “waiting for him” in Sinatra’s suite.
Medley said he had sex with the woman in Sinatra’s suite while Sinatra was onstage “between our 10 (p.m.) and 2 a.m. shows.”
“Am I proud of that?” he says in the book. “I’m just proud I’m still alive. I’m not sure Frank would have appreciated it.”
I asked him if he had a death wish or stayed awake at night worrying.
“No,” he said. “Remember that expression, ‘Young, dumb and full of (expletive)?’ That was me.”
Medley’s new album, “Your Heart to Mine: Dedicated to the Blues,” is something he’s wanted to do for 50 years, he said.
“It’s dedicated to all the great black singers of the ’50s,” he said. “I was so heavily influenced by and probably wouldn’t have a career without them.”
He returns to Las Vegas for Labor Day weekend.
THE SCENE AND HEARD
When bottle service caught on in Las Vegas more than a dozen years ago — taking bar tabs in hot clubs to mortgage-level heights — it was all the buzz. During Memorial Day weekend, revelers at Marquee at The Cosmopolitan got a glimpse of the future when a small drone hovered over the pool scene as part of the club’s new high roller bottle service delivery system. For a minimum spend of $20,000, you get a bottle and an aerial photo of the delivery to your group. It’s kids’ stuff for the folks at Area 51, but it’s one giant step in the social media era. ...
Palms minority owner George Maloof was standing outside The Peninsula hotel in Beverly Hills, Calif., last week when he heard a familiar voice greeting him. It was Ballmer, fresh from his winning bid to buy the Clippers. Ballmer had attempted to buy the Maloof family-owned Sacramento Kings last year and move it to Seattle, but the league nixed it and kept the team from moving. The Maloofs eventually sold the team.
“We shook hands,” Maloof said. “He’s the perfect owner. I said, ‘Things always work out.’ ”
Jerry Seinfeld, riding the High Roller on Saturday at The Linq. ... Talent manager Larry Rudolph, whose clients have included Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus and will.i.am, at Crush (MGM Grand) on Friday. His latest signee is recording artist Nick Hissom, the son of Andrea Wynn. Rudolph was on his way to see Spears’ little sister, Jamie Lynn, perform at Stoney’s in Town Square. ... Ex-NFL great Michael Strahan, with Fox football analyst Jay Glazer, at Surrender (Encore) on Friday. ... Nicolas Cage, taking in Johnny Mathis’ concert at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts on Friday.
The punch line
“Guys from the band One Direction were caught on video smoking pot. Sounds like the one direction they’re going is straight to Bieberville.” — Craig Ferguson.
Norm Clarke’s column appears Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. He can be reached at 702-383-0244 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Find more online at www.normclarke.com. Follow Norm on Twitter @Norm_Clarke.