Buffalo Bills fans know by now the team will be funded by a trust for the foreseeable future. But, the passing of Ralph Wilson Jr. has brought about a lot of questions. One major question is who will be the new owner. In this new series Buffalowdown will bring some names to the forefront.
The first possible owner is Terry Pegula. Mr. Pegula is now the owner of the Buffalo Sabres, and is one of the few “local” people who has the financial means to buy the Bills outright. There are a few issues with Pegula and the Bills. First and maybe the biggest problem, Pegula owns the Sabres. The NFL does have a Cross-Ownership rule. While this rule doesn’t impact Pegula it would rule out several other interested people.
“The rules prevent NFL owners from buying a team in another league in an NFL market.” Sports Business Daily
A second problem is Mr. Pegula has not come out and said he would be willing to buy the Bills. It would likely take about 1/3 of his overall wealth to do so. It has been reported by Forbes that Terry Pegula is worth about $3.1 Billion. In an April press conference Pegula went on record saying “I don’t own a printing press…” [Business First]. That simple statement goes is different from what Pegula said shortly after buying the Sabres. If I am remembering correctly he said something to the effect “If I want to make more money I’ll go drill a well.” It’s nothing personal, its just I don’t like comments like that. But, everything being equal, Pegula should have the connections to at the very least put a group of investors together.
A Little Background on Pegula
- 2010 he sold his Pittsburgh-based East Resources to Royal Dutch Shell for $4.7 billion. A Penn State graduate, Pegula made his mark in the natural energy and oil exploration fields. [Buffalo Business First]
- February 2011. Pegula bought the Sabres and Bandits for $189 Million
Pegula would seemto be a perfect fit in Buffalo, he seems determined to help rebuild downtown, why not help save the Buffalo Bills? Maybe someday soon Pegula will at least address the questions about the Bills. Until than everything is just speculation.
*As the new owner question unfolds so will the future of the Buffalo Bills. Next week we will introduce you to another possible owner.