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WGR550>Topics>>4/7 Daniel Kaplan of SBJ talks Bills ownership

4/7 Daniel Kaplan of SBJ talks Bills ownership

Apr 7, 2014|

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

It's not always so I mean you know. That the community had the gift of time. To get its act together. To get a new stadium put together in a way that the team could be I can be viable for generations to come in the buffalo area. That is an enormous gift. The cost of hundreds of millions of dollars of value. Would you GR Sports Radio 550. We have a stadium that's very good stadium in Orchard Park. If it's determined that sufficient to keep the team well we would do what's necessary in that regard if it's determined we need to be somewhere else. And I would certainly say the buffalo is a choice over any other community. -- soon too extreme danger or. Do you have extra -- -- processing for keeping the bills in buffalo but there are a good number of names mentioned people know my interest in keeping those in buffalo every so often don't get a call from somebody who understand the interest didn't write the bills are stating that he didn't. -- -- -- -- -- -- He's offered few days back on Thursday thanks for joining us 8030550. -- line. Couple things are working on bills traded for Mike Williams on Friday what do you think of the acquisition of the now former Tampa Bay Bucs wide receiver former Syracuse in Riverside stars well. And how do you think that affects the draft if you were thinking about Mike Evans should they'll still take a receiver with the number one pick should they take receiver Boller is a completely off the board. 8030550. Bullet drove we love to get your opinion in on this 88550. To 515 to join us as well. When it comes to the bills jets worth thinking about the draft but -- -- wondering about the future of the team who the next owner or owners will be will be here in happier we talked about the least. A lot bring in net gain of Kaplan from sports business journal down New York he covers the National Football League and has also covered sales of franchises and his. Well versed on this topic in this discussion and he's gonna join us here right now Daniel -- Howard and sell thanks for coming Alice good morning by the -- morning good morning. I guess the first thing you had a chance to knock on Friday and I'd love you to talk to the list is this morning about something that that I didn't realize and that is. The extent of the role of the national football again that we know they'll ultimately -- all vote on a new owner. But you know behind the scenes you had mentioned that dumb they might be the -- have been very active already in this whole process. Right the good -- this is -- body typical Palin in a typical industry. That the National Football League in and the other -- as well Major League Baseball National Hockey League. Put in particular. The National Football League they have -- that isn't the best way to describe it is is being. A strong regulatory oversight. You have 24 of the 32 owners must approve. -- before you even get there the finance committee have to prove it. And then before that. The league officials have to be okay that generally have to be OK with it and there are shepherding the process along all the way to that is not just a situation where. Did that builds trust is trying to sell the team did find an owner and there. Mean you're dot these the National Football League has it has a tremendous say in the matter. Use so what do you think they've already. Maybe even prior to the passing of Ralph Wilson junior is it possible they were already doing their due diligence. Absolutely. I I would be shocked if they were not and in fact isn't in the path for the past two sales for the National Football League the Jacksonville. Jaguars in the Saint Louis ram. Pretty much those those two deals were shepherded an -- that -- to throw and obviously the the Cleveland the browns. Those those deals Hulu -- heavy oversight from the National Football League and the case to the ground in fact. Don't even knew that he was for sale. And it was pretty much done and if you look at it from an investment banking perspective. By the National Football League itself. They they doubt that the buyer of Jimmy has one. Act which was already known given that the minority investor in the Pittsburgh Steelers. They knew the owner of the browns wanted to sell they wanted -- -- what -- had from the apartment together with the -- did they know under the ground. Mr. Lerner and and the sale was announced in consummated so. -- it would it would shock me they didn't have a a list of individuals or groups in the buffalo area and elsewhere that they'd be comfortable way. So let me ask -- this. When when mr. Wilson passed away initially the the people were saying well you know this could take on maybe take a couple of years for the sale to be completed and all of a sudden it went to. Pay the sales fast tracking might be done in October just a few months down the road do you think. The fast track story as the result of what you just discussed that the NFL already has done their -- they've done their background checks and they would be quickly in position to approve. Where they want is there. And I think that's part of it I admit I didn't know having talked to people around the league what one thing the league would like to see. Is that there's going to be that change of ownership. No matter when it occurs. That the owners in place -- but for a in between the end of the season in the draft process so. In effect that happened for the next in the if that happened 2015. You you pretty much need to have a -- you know releasing new owner announced are -- talent. But by the October period could be a few more months so. You know of who have more. Due diligence and -- media ownership voted. And whatnot but today you're going to have a new owner in play for the 2015. Draft them from before that that he -- she can happen input into that. You really need to get the ball rolling quickly now. -- -- my big question in all of this in terms of when we talk about the future whether that team will be here is trusting NFL owners to do the right thing by buffalo. So let me ask you this if they had a a local owner. Place a bid but there's an out of town owner who bids a lot more money or what ever more money than the local owner in the NFL owners just picked the guy who's here locally and say. But we wanna keep the team in buffalo so that's our goal with him. The NFL owners can do that clearly that. A you know it's a decision it's his decision. That that they'll look at closely because it is a relocation. And they turned that down there are obviously turning it is usually a larger location -- -- And that you know that that money in their pocket. But I think the number one thing they're gonna look at is the viability they don't want the the bills to end up over the next 101520 years of their buffalo. To be a drain on the National Football League that we -- the train on them. So well what does that mean it means that they want to happen if they wanna see a viable stadium. Option and in buffalo and I don't know that's gonna be known you know by the time. Is that the team that solved so it's it's unclear to me when the team is sold it's gonna have a hard and fast -- relocation costs. I thought it was interesting Dana -- -- sports business journal you did a profile -- Ralph Wilson. Back in 20051. Of the things we've been talking about here nobody really knows what's in the trust. The idea that you know could Ralph Wilson of what specific language in the trust saying this team must be sold to local interests. Well he told me in obviously in the last ten years he perhaps. Things could change yours and I could change the language. When I did a pro all of Ralph and -- 2005. I have to that specific question can you putting your trust you know you're well. Do you. Provision that the team not be relocated he he kind of put -- in the story that that that it was not possible the lawyers have told them. That is illegal. So I didn't really delved into that is pretty responsive and story so I don't know if that is indeed true that it's illegal. To put it into the truck that is dedicated that that would be provision of the sale but that was never disappear in ten years ago about people I've talked to. And you know in the interim period that you know nothing I've I've learned has suggested that that has changed that. He's always said it was during his lifetime he would keep the bills and in buffalo but you know when it came to thereafter. He did in it was a little more ambiguous terms of its intentions. The one of the other things certainly that's on the W brought up the viability of the -- long term that the league would want -- to be a drain on the league. We always hear you know it's a small market one of the smallest markets in the NFL so what about that going forward in terms of whether or not the league would want local ownership what about the concept of us being in the small market in the revenues generated by this franchise. Well they certainly would want to -- strong local ownership or you know -- -- know wherewithal. Is that that is required to run the National Football League team that they want to make sure the investments are there in terms of free agency in terms of training facilities. But -- one of the things that you know -- I hate him now look there's see this collective bargaining agreements that. They're coming go but the current one there was 12011. For ten years. Certainly play the Buffalo Bills and a better financial position than they had been previously when I sat down with Ralph in 2005. The big question was. Small market. Vs large market. That's no longer an issue only right now in the National Football League we could not be anywhere near the issue will watch the collective bargaining agreement. Shifted a lot of resources from players to owners that really helped solve. A lot of these issues that were the devil in the National Football League that got Jerry Jones and -- will connect to each other's throats. Those issues are gone. That's not to say that won't be an issue you know in ten years -- clearly the players are. Not gonna be thrilled with the collective bargaining agreement they're gonna want a better deal you know you could exceed 1015 years the same issues come back small market forces large market. So clearly the owners are gonna wanna make sure that somewhere down the road. -- market like -- doesn't become sort of you know welfare case for the National Football League. The the -- they'll ask you about Daniel as -- does all the whole concept of fast track is it possible one of the reasons they're fast tracking the sale. Is that. Because Los Angeles is open does that create more leverage appear that. Trust and you're trying to get maximum value could they be pushing the sale because they're worried about the LA market closing up beat up about moving there. It's a factor in driving up their price. Well the only market clearly is always been valuable. And media out there for bringing National Football League considering a move or new stadium. You know that said right now it's pretty clear there's no viable stadium option for the National Football League. In Los Angeles vehicle but you know there's there's nothing going on that you -- that you project that have been competing against each other for years. The one and city of industry about twenty miles outside of LA and the one in downtown LA is owned by AG. There's no talk about those anymore there's this -- but dead. It is a couple of other side can carts and then at Hollywood park connections that are being. But it it's very very very preliminary so it's it's hard to see the process with the deals right now. Had seen being driven by Los Angeles. You know I could see -- couple 23 years down the road perhaps but. Not not right now. I got a lot I got one other question for Daniel securing new York and you've covered asleep for quite some time. I wanted to ask you about Roger Goodell is impact in all of this because up here are some of us are believing there's an X-Factor he's from Western New York. So he understands the city and the passion and everybody the bills fans and all that stuff. Could he have that kind of sway could he single -- convince owners enough owners to vote to make sure the team stays here in your opinion. Eat he will have an enormous impact he has had enormous impact in general. Host of issues recently. In the National Football League but he's also remember at the end of the day easy fit either businessman and he you know save that they came up. And not not as. Not to the ownership ranks and not as a lawyer he came up there the business side of the National Football League and the key it had me in my heart that he believes. That the bills don't have a viable stated situation in buffalo. He will recommend it move it that that's my that's my opinion. I I don't know if it's true but but I do know that he will probably work hard he can't ensure that does not occur. -- he didn't look the league none of the league tomorrow relocation it's not good. It is not it is that it's generally not good for business community and individual situation where you're -- really bad market moving to a good market. Perhaps but it is generally don't want that here. Franchise is going all over the place not -- not good for and loyalty not good for the -- so I mean it will work from short continually keeping in buffalo but. They're not gonna do it at all costs. Dana Kaplan -- from sports business journal Daniel thank you very much for coming ominous this morning and thanks very much for the background as well. You never did you hear what I I talked him on Friday south -- -- we were booked in for the show on Monday and there were two things that struck me. You know as we continue to wonder what's gonna happen with this franchise where they're gonna go and stay -- so forth and so on. Some of -- he just talked about this interview but in our conversation there were two things that struck me one. Was the role of the NFL behind the scenes and you know he said again today don't be surprised if you know they've already done their background checks and they've done their -- And they've already approached potential investors this is while you know Ralph Wilson junior was still alive. That they'd already are approached potential investors and and everything found out everything they had to find out. And I it I thought that was interesting to me because that makes if you're gonna hear helps on the sales in fast -- why. Well would make more sense if someone tells me the NFL probably did their background checks already so it's not like Ralph Wilson junior passes away. Team is up for sale. Let's start getting bids at the end of the last to say who's betting on the team okay let's start finding out about these people -- of that stuff already. So that's why they might be in position as early as October. To vote on a sale because they've done all of their background checks and even if you whoever they have to -- that struck me -- interest. Because at the end of the day. It's their group. It's their business and no matter what the trust says the estate says it's the National Football League owners who will vote yes or no cell. In theory. If there's a group out there that offers may be more money than a local group the NFL owners don't like those guys are that person they can vote them down -- -- -- was point one. Point two was the revenue sharing. The whole thing about we're in buffalo it's a small market. You know the noted that the bills can't compete. First off from what we've been told over the years at least in recent years the bills have been. If not middle of the pack made a little higher they're not bottom. They're not in the bottom in terms of revenue producing football teams were told -- very competitive maybe middle of the pack may be better -- -- not bottom third bottom. 85% of the revenues they'll -- from national revenues. Most of them at the money G teams get that generated by the national revenue only 15% of what the -- bring and is local revenues so. They live and die based on the national revenue others disparity in local revenue would Dallas brings in locally with the jets and giants bring in locally. More than what the bills could bring in locally but teams are living and dying based on the national revenues so. That hole you can't survive and a small market because of the CB in 2011 is not as big of factors you might think it would be. Well that's what Smart corporation's newest plan -- be proactive and think that without sounding morbid when you've been ninety plus year old owner they're going to be proactive your homework and they're going to start doing that knowing that -- They don't wanna wake up winning all of what do we do now -- we don't really look at so I think that's part of the reason but the other thing is. He said.

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