By Brian Ives
One of Bon Jovi’s partners is Larry Tanenbaum, the chairman of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, which controls the NBA’s Raptors and NHL’s Maple Leafs. Meanwhile, Bon Jovi is the former co-owner of the Arena Football League team the Philadelphia Soul.
The Hollywood Reporter‘s article also notes that the group is looking to build a new stadium in the Toronto area, which, if true, would likely be met with its share of controversy.
That’s because under terms of the team’s lease with the state and county, the Bills are not allowed to negotiate with anyone who, to their knowledge, has an intention of relocating the team before the end of the 2022 season, when the lease ends.
The team is being sold following the death of Hall of Fame owner Ralph Wilson in March.
Although the Bon Jovi-led group has not said that the change in ownership would move the team from Buffalo, many believe that it is their intent to do so. New York State Lt. Governor Robert Duffy tweeted a number of messages yesterday (July 24) and today warning any potential buyers not to try to move the team, saying, “Note to prospective owners: BUFFALO Bills. Don’t pick this fight,” and “The Buffalo Bills are the only true NYS team. It would be a public relations disaster for any new owner to consider a move- and the 400m hit.”[tweet https://twitter.com/LtGovDuffyNY/status/492487984483401729]
The latter tweet referred to a $400 million compensation that the county and state would seek as compensation for the team breaking their lease.[tweet https://twitter.com/LtGovDuffyNY/status/492495946329387008]
He also tweeted a photo of a t-shirt that said “Bon Jovi Free Zone” with a Buffalo Bills logo on it.