On Wednesday, Commanders owner Daniel Snyder shocked the sports world by announcing an intention to explore the possibility of selling the team. For some long-suffering Commanders fan, the news has had a too-good-to-be-true vibe, a comfy new rug that suddenly could be pulled out from under them.
On Friday, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones gave credence to the idea that Snyder will sell only a minority share of the team, or perhaps not sell any of it at all.
“I don’t think I was necessarily surprised because he recently acquired a very significant portion of the team,” forty percent from his other partners,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan, via Ben Standig of TheAthletic.com. “And at the same time, he’s entertaining the building of a new stadium. The acquisition of the partnership interest, as well as the building of the new stadium, is going to require huge economic resources, almost unthinkable economic resources. And so these are the times that you sit down and start your noodling, so to speak, or try to figure out how you’re going to get there and what you’re going to look like when you get there. So this doesn’t surprise me that he set up a time of real, real planning or real thinking about how to manage the economic resources it takes to be where we want the Washington team to be.”
Jones was then asked whether he believes its significantly more likely that Snyder will sell a minority interest in the team, and not sell the whole thing.
“It sounds like I’m saying that, but I really am saying I bet that all options are on the table, and then you see what might be possible,” Jones said. “And that’s what I think this exercise is. Let’s look and see what our options are here. See what the big interest is, what makes the most sense, in their case, to the Snyders, and then you go from there. It’s one thing to sit there at your table and draw up all your plans and figure out how you’re going to get it done financially. But you in the mirror, in this cases, you need more, and that’s a third party, so he’s out testing the waters.”
It might be impossible to find someone who will buy a minority share in the team. Who would want to pay huge money to accept a position of subservience to Dan Snyder? Even with a path to eventual control, could a new partner fully and completely trust that Snyder will comply with all terms and conditions when the time comes to take over? Or would Snyder potentially grab the cash from a limited partner, make a promise to eventually surrender the reins, and then try to back out?
I’m not saying any of that would happen. I’m saying that anyone who would consider purchasing part of the team would be prudent to consider it, and to negotiate the terms accordingly. Or to buy all of it — or none of it.