The Washington Commanders finally acquired new owners after the NFL unanimously approved its sale to Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment (HBSE) for a US sports franchise record of $6.05bn.
Ownership will change hands from the controversial Dan Snyder to HBSE Founder and group leader Josh Harris who already boasts an impressive franchise portfolio with the Philadelphia 76ers and the New Jersey Devils.
Harris stated: “I feel an awesome responsibility to the city of Washington. I know what I’ve got to do. It comes down to winning. It’s on me and on our ownership group to deliver. That’s what we’re going to do.
“This franchise is part of who I am. But being a fan is not enough. To be successful, we need to win championships, create a positive impact on the community and create incredible memories for our fanbase much like I had as a youth growing up in Washington.”
Harris and a group which included the likes of fellow billionaire Mitchell Rales as well as NBA legend Magic Johnson, were reported as the front-runners to acquire the Commanders last April after it appeared Snyder agreed to sell the NFL franchise.
Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos was also reported as being interested in buying the Commanders but his interest waned early, leading the way for HBSE to directly strike a deal with Snyder, with 32 out of 32 teams approving the deal.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell commented on the sale: “As someone who grew up in Washington, I know how important that franchise is to that community. The franchise is in good hands with this group.
“They want to put that franchise where they think it belongs, where it’s respected – not just in the community, but worldwide.”