Donald Trump is serious about becoming an NFL owner, and the real estate mogul turned reality television star said he’s preparing to bid on the Buffalo Bills.
Trump initially expressed interest in buying the team when the sale process started a few weeks ago. The team’s longtime — and only — owner Ralph Wilson passed away in April, leaving no succession plan in place for the team.
As the gears are set into motion for the sale of the Buffalo Bills, Trump is again making it known that he’s interested in buying the team and is even willing to put some of his own money down for a new stadium.
Ever the real estate magnate, Trump said he’s already been scouting out locations around Buffalo to place the new stadium.
“There are a couple of sites in Buffalo that would be very good,” he said during an interview with the Buffalo News.. “We’ve looked at two of them, and we’re thinking about two of them, but we’ll see what happens.”
Donald Trump actually has a strong connection to the team. He has long been friends with quarterback Jim Kelly, and he is a frequent donor to Kelly’s foundation. When Kelly went to New York City last month for treatment of a recurrence of jaw cancer, he even stayed in one of Trump’s condos.
“I’ve always liked the Bills. … I’ve always thought that Jim Kelly is one of the great, great players in the history of the NFL,” Trump said in the recent interview. “You’ve had some fabulous teams, just really a great group of teams and a great group of people. And the Bills should stay in Buffalo.”
But, it seems Donald Trump will have some competition if he wants to buy the team. Reports have claimed that former Buffalo Sabres owner Tom Golisano is also interested, and Buffalo billionaire Jeremy Jacobs, the current owner of the Boston Bruins, is also rumored to be interested. Jacobs would likely have one of his sons take over ownership of the Bills as rules prohibit one person from owning professional teams in different markets.
A group led by Jon Bon Jovi is also rumored to be bidding, and if successful, they would attempt to move the team to Toronto.
Donald Trump has committed to keeping the Bills in Buffalo, and it seems he has some backing among the NFL owners. At the recent owners meeting, reports indicated that there are not enough votes to authorize a franchise relocation.