Teddy Forstmann's Final Fantasy
By Adam Lashinsky

(FORTUNE Magazine) – Buyout maverick Teddy Forstmann loves sports and beautiful women, seemingly in equal measure. So it makes sense that he's rumored to be in the running to buy International Management Group, the famed talent agency that inspired the movie Jerry Maguire.

Forstmann, of course, is the financier behind giant successes like Gulfstream and Dr Pepper--as well as flops like XO Communications. When we last checked in with him, in July (see "How Teddy Forstmann Lost His Groove" on fortune.com), he had just survived an awkward verdict in a suit brought against him by the state of Connecticut. Forstmann lost, but the state won no damages. With the trial behind him, he tells FORTUNE, he's looking ahead. "Right now I'm looking at something that is about as interesting as anything I've done in years." That something is IMG, say sources close to Forstmann and IMG, neither of which would comment.

Forstmann, who has squired beautiful women including the late Princess Diana around town, seems to have an inside line. He was old friends with Mark McCormack, IMG's legendary founder, who died last year. He's also close to McCormack's widow, Betsy. And two of IMG's star clients, golfer Vijay Singh and model Elizabeth Hurley, are Forstmann's good friends.

Still, snagging IMG won't be simple. McCormack's estate is said to value the firm as high as $700 million, and getting the support of IMG's star agents will be essential. Stretch limos have been appearing with some regularity in front of IMG's Cleveland offices, testament to the numerous buyout firms (such as Blackstone and Bain Capital, both of which declined to comment) that have taken a pitch book from IMG's banker, Rothschild North America. Looks as if Forstmann isn't the only one ready to--you guessed it--show IMG the money. --Adam Lashinsky