The tumultuous Dan Snyder Era should be officially coming to an end this week, is widely expected to approve the beleaguered owner’s sale of the Washington Commanders to a group that includes two billionaire investors and NBA great Magic Johnson.
The Washington Commanders franchise has been on the market for several months, but reports have now surfaced that a deal is done for Snyder to finally complete the deal. A group led by Josh Harris and Mitchell Rales will be the lucky buyer. Coincidentally, joining them will be another high-profile business partner, NBA legend Magic Johnson.
Harris is the co-founder of Apollo Global Management, which he helped launch in 1990. Which is where he built his incredible financial portfolio. Forbes estimates his net worth is approximately $5.8 billion dollars. He’s already the owner of two other major sports franchises – the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and the NHL’s New Jersey Devils – through his firm Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment.
The NFL finance committee met remotely on Monday to unofficially approve the $6.05 billion deal, according to The Washington Post. It will come as somewhat of a relief to Roger Goodell and the NFL, as Snyder’s tenure in Washington has been marked by controversy, along with poor performance on the field.
In Snyder’s 24 seasons as Washington owner, the franchise has reached the postseason six times. They have only won two playoff games. And with the rich tradition of the franchise – one that includes three Super Bowl victories in its archive – the fan base grew weary of excuses. Despite spending massive amounts of their payroll on veteran free agents in the 2000s, Snyder’s contingent never put together a cohesive unit.
NFL team owners are expected to vote to approve the sale during meetings Thursday in Minneapolis. At least 24 of the league’s 32 owners must approve the sale for it to pass. As mentioned earlier, Commissioner Goodell has been vocally supportive of the move, despite the fact that another potential buyer arrived at virtually the eleventh hour.
Former Duke basketball player and entrepreneur Brian Davis was also hoping to head a group to acquire the franchise, which would have bad him the first black majority owner in the League. However, some around the NFL balked when reports began to surface that Davis either didn’t have the money he claimed to have or was being backed by secret investors in Saudi Arabia. With the group that also included NBA Hall of Famer Johnson in place, the owner’s final decision appears to be the safest one for the NFL’s image.