On Wednesday, Commanders owner Daniel Snyder shocked the sports world when he announced his intention to explore the possibility of selling the team. For some long-suffering Commanders fans, the news had a too-good-to-be-true vibe, a comfy new rug that could suddenly be pulled out from under them.
On Friday, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones gave credence to the idea that Snyder would only sell a minority stake in the team, or perhaps none at all.
“I don’t think I was necessarily surprised because he recently acquired a very significant part of the team, forty percent of his other partners,” Jones said on 105.3 The Fan, via Ben Standig of TheAthletic. com. “And at the same time, he is dealing with the construction of a new stadium. The acquisition of the stake in the partnership, as well as the construction of the new stadium, is will require enormous economic resources, almost unthinkable economic resources. And so these are the times when you sit down and start your noodle, 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 it doesn’t surprise me that he put in a moment of real, real planning or real thinking about how to manage the economic resources needed to be where we want Team Washington to be.
Jones was then asked if he thought it was much more likely that Snyder would sell a minority stake in the team and not sell the whole thing.
“It sounds like I’m saying, but I’m really saying I bet all the options are on the table, and then you see what might be possible,” Jones said. “And that’s what I think this exercise is about. Let’s take a look and see what our options are here. See what the big interest is, what makes the most sense, in their case, for the Snyders, and then you go from there. It’s one thing to sit down at your table and lay out all your plans and figure out how you’re going to do it financially. But you in the mirror, in this case, you need more, and it’s a third party, so it’s testing the waters.
It might be impossible to find someone who will buy a minority stake in the team. Who would want to pay huge sums to accept a subordinate position to Dan Snyder? Even with a path to eventual control, could a new partner be fully and completely confident that Snyder will comply with all terms and conditions when it comes time to take over? Or could Snyder potentially grab a sponsor’s money, make a promise to eventually give up the reins, then try to back down?
I’m not saying that would happen. I say anyone considering buying part of the team would be prudent to consider it and negotiate the terms accordingly. Or to buy everything – or nothing.