Phoenix Suns president and CEO Jason Rowley resigned on Monday, hours before the team’s sale was officially approved by the NBA Board of Governors.
Rowley’s exit was announced to the organization in an email sent by Suns interim governor Sam Garvin and obtained by ESPN.
“I wanted to let you know that Jason Rowley made the decision to leave the organization,” Garvin wrote. “After almost 15 years of hard work and dedicated service, Jason felt that the transition in ownership created ideal timing to close this chapter of his professional journey and pursue new opportunities.”
Mat Ishbia, the billionaire president and CEO of United Wholesale Mortgage, is set to complete his purchase of the team -- and the WNBA’s Phoenix Mercury -- for $4 billion from disgraced majority owner Robert Sarver. According to a statement from the league, the transaction is expected to be finalized sometime this week.
Ishbia could be introduced as the new majority owner as early as Wednesday.
Rowley was linked to allegations of retaliation, intimidation and verbal abuse by more than two dozen former and current Suns employees, according to an ESPN report.
Sarver was suspended by the league last September for one year and fined $10 million.
An independent investigation into allegations he created a toxic work environment in Phoenix was conducted. A summary report said he used a racial slur at least five times, sexually harassed female employees and yelled and cursed at workers during nearly two decades of ownership.