Sports Authority will auction off most of its assets this month, making it possible that it will sell or close all of its 450 stores.

Forbes is reporting the national sporting goods retailer is giving up its effort to reorganize under Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and will pursue a sale instead.

In March, when it initially filed for bankruptcy, Sports Authority announced it would be closing 140 stores, including one in Auburn. That would have left Sports Authority with only one other Maine location, at the Maine Mall in South Portland.

On Monday, the on-duty manager in South Portland referred questions about the store’s future to corporate offices in Colorado, but there was no response to call-back messages and emails. The company has not publicly responded to the Forbes article, but it has since removed from its corporate website a message by its CEO talking about the company’s plans to emerge from bankruptcy.

Sports Authority is the second major sporting goods retailer to announce closures this year. The parent company of Eastern Mountain Sports and Bob’s Stores filed for bankruptcy last month and said it plans to close several New England locations, including Maine’s only Bob’s, also in South Portland. The state’s only Eastern Mountain Sports store, at 87 Marginal Way in Portland, will remain open.

Penelope Overton can be contacted at 791-6463 or at:

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