And that it's would be another unexplainable piece of desperate insanity from Microsoft if they were to do this.
Yes, bolstering first party studios and IP's is now always and forever an act of desperation. I suppose they were desperate when they purchased Rare, Lionhead, and formed Black Tusk as well?
By that measure, I suppose Sony was desperate when they secured rights to Insomniac titles and purchased Naughty Dog.
Just because they are "behind in sales" doesn't automatically make every investment an act of desperation. Obviously any company behind will want to do what they can to catch up and/or be in the lead.