Jul 20, 2023 - Sports

NFL approves sale of Washington Commanders for record $6 billion

Illustration of the Washington Commander's logo peeling back to reveal a hundred dollar bill on the reverse side.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The NFL team owners voted unanimously on Thursday to approve of private equity executive Josh Harris acquiring the Washington Commanders from current owner Dan Snyder, the league said in a statement.

Why it matters: The $6 billion deal is the largest ever for a pro sports team and ends an ownership tenure that included more scandals than playoff wins.

The big picture: Snyder's tenure had been marred by harassment scandals and a deflated fanbase.

  • Harris said in May when the sale was first announced that he was looking forward to "having the honor to serve as responsible and accountable stewards of the Commanders franchise moving forward."

What they're saying: “Josh will be a great addition to the NFL," NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said.

  • "The diverse group that Josh has put together is outstanding for its business acumen and strong Washington ties and we welcome them to the NFL as well," Goodell added.

Details: Harris is leading the new ownership group, which also includes local billionaire Mitchell Rales and basketball legend Magic Johnson.

  • Also involved is David Blitzer, who co-owns pro sports clubs like the New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia 76ers with Harris.

Catch up quick: The approval comes after months of bidding, and turmoil even after Harris' bid was announced.

  • In May, the NFL finance committee raised some questions at a meeting and indicated they need time to scrutinize the details, the Washington Post reported.

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