Posts Tagged ‘Team Sale’

The Carolina Panthers announced Monday that the sale of the franchise to David Tepper officially closed.

“I am thrilled to begin this new era of Carolina Panthers football and am humbled by the overwhelming excitement and support for the team,” Tepper said in a statement. “On behalf of the fans and myself, I thank Jerry Richardson for bringing the team to the Carolinas and for entrusting me with its future. Winning is the most important thing both on the field and in the community, and I am committed to winning a Super Bowl championship together. I look forward to being part of the Panthers’ family and to supporting this flourishing region.”

Tepper is the founder and president of global hedge fund Appaloosa Management, L.P. He signed an agreement to purchase the team in May, with NFL owners approving the sale shortly thereafter during the league’s spring meetings.

 Carolina also announced Chief Operating Officer Tina Becker has resigned. She held the position since December 2017, and the team said there are no immediate plans to hire her replacement.

Before launching his own professional football league, WWE chairman Vince McMahon was apparently interested in purchasing an NFL team.

On a recent episode of the “Something To Wrestle With” podcast, former WWE producer Bruce Pritchard discussed rumors that McMahon considered buying the Minnesota Vikings when the team was put up for sale in 1998.

“We didn’t know what the hell he was talking about really at first,” Prichard said (starts at the 35-minute mark of the podcast). “More than anything it was a publicity stunt, because they were floating out there that the Vikings were up for sale and Vince floated it out there that he was interested in it.

“And I dare say that had the price been right, he might’ve even bought the damn thing for publicity purposes to say, ‘OK, the WWF just bought the Minnesota Vikings and Vince McMahon is now entering the football arena.’ So it worked, got people talking.”

McMahon launched the XFL in 1999, which led to the league’s lone season in 2001. The second iteration of the XFL is set to begin play in February 2020, and will reportedly cost McMahon close to $500 million over the first three years.

More bad news for New York Knicks fans.

Team owner James Dolan does not intend to sell the team, despite a recent Crain’s report stating he was laying the groundwork to part with both the Knicks and the New York Rangers.

A statement from the Madison Square Garden Company flatly said, “There are no plans to sell the Knicks or the Rangers,” according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News.

Crain’s reported that Dolan was exploring a move in which the Rangers and Knicks would be separated from MSG and placed in a new public company. Dolan would control that company, but then be able to move stock as he pivots into more business investments.

Dolan inherited MSG from his father Charles Dolan in 1999. The Rangers have been respectable under his watch, but the Knicks have the worst record in the NBA over the past 17 seasons.

Put away your checkbooks, prospective owners. The Ottawa Senators aren’t for sale.

That was the indication from NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, who addressed the issue as part of his “state of the game” press conference on Monday prior to Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Vegas Golden Knights and Washington Capitals.

“(Current owner) Eugene Melnyk is committed to the Senators and he’s passionate about them,” Bettman told reporters, per Sporting News Canada.

The question came after a report stated that former Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson and Ottawa mayor Jim Watson both hope to see a change in team ownership.

It was a hectic 2017-18 season for Melnyk and the Senators, as the outspoken owner floated the possibility of the franchise relocating if crowds stopped turning out. He later walked back his comments, stating that it’s “his privilege” to own the Senators.

Alfredsson is the Senators’ all-time leading scorer who later served as a senior advisor with the club for two seasons.

The Carolina Panthers are expected to be sold to hedge fund manager David Tepper on Tuesday for a record $2.2 billion – in cash, the Charlotte Observer’s Katherine Peralta, Rick Rothacker, Jourdan Rodrigue, and Joseph Person report.

Tepper, a minority owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, emerged as the leading candidate last week. He would have to sell his minority stake in the Steelers and the deal would still require approval from the league’s owners at the next NFL meeting from May 21 to 23.

The Buffalo Bills were the last NFL franchise to be sold, netting $1.4 billion in 2014. The NBA’s Houston Rockets fetched $2.2 billion in 2017.

Tepper is already envisioning the Panthers in the image of the Steelers. As an owner, he’d like his new franchise to incorporate the continuity, stability, and approach to contract extensions that the Steelers have, ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports.

The Steelers are a model of consistency: They’ve reached the playoffs 30 times in the last 46 years and have had just three coaches in the past half-century.

As for player contracts, the three offensive stars of the team – Ben RoethlisbergerAntonio Brown, and Le’Veon Bell – were inked to below-market deals.

Roethlisberger signed an extension in 2015 and is currently the 11th-best-paid quarterback in the league based on contract values. Brown is considered one of the best receivers in the game and ranks sixth at his position in contracts. Bell has been fighting for an extension for two offseasons and is currently tabbed to play a second consecutive campaign on the team’s franchise tag.

Tepper’s estimated net worth is $11 billion. He emerged as the favorite to be the next owner of the franchise over a group of bidders that included financial group founder Ben Navarro, steel company CEO Alan Kestenbaum, and entrepreneur Michael Rubin.

The Panthers were put up for sale by founder and owner Jerry Richardson after he faced reports of workplace misconduct in December.

Gayle Benson, the new owner of the New Orleans Saints and New Orleans Pelicans following the death of her husband Tom, emphasized Monday she intends to keep both franchises and would “never sell.”

“I don’t think there’s any other choice,” Benson said, according to Larry Holder of The Times-Picayune. “I think that’s the only thing that you could do is to keep his legacy alive. Where else would you go? I’m from New Orleans. My husband was from New Orleans. We’re just like one big family over there.”

Benson also expressed her frustrations with those who believe she isn’t up to the task of running two major sports teams.

“It’s disappointing to think that somebody would think I would mess up his legacy. But I guess everyone has their opinion,” Benson said. “I would never sell it. No.”

While Benson says she will rely on the strong leaders of both organizations, she won’t shy away from taking control of tough situations.

“I think I can make difficult decisions,” she said. “In fact, I know I can. I think I’ll be fine with that.”

Bidding for the ownership of the Carolina Panthers has eclipsed $2.5 billion, which would set a record for the sale of a U.S. pro sports team, sources told Scott Soshnick of Bloomberg.

Richardson decided to sell the Panthers after team employees were discovered to have reported instances of workplace misconduct.

According to Soshnick’s sources, the bidding has gotten so high that one of the hopeful owners, Michael Rubin of sports-apparel company Fanatics, has dropped out of the running.

The Buffalo Bills were the most recent NFL team to be sold, going for $1.4 billion in 2014, according to the Associated Press, which set an NFL record at the time.