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Former Buffalo Sabres Owner Tom Golisano Set to Enter Buffalo Bills Ownership Race

August 2nd, 2014 at 12:15 PM
By Paul Lane Sabres 101

Thought to be left out of the running after Tuesday's deadline passed, former Buffalo Sabres owner Tom Golisano is apparently getting into the Buffalo Bills bidding derby after all.

Ralph Wilson Stadium from Flickr via Wylio? 2010 mark.watmough, Flickr | CC-BY | via Wylio

The New York Post reported that Golisano will enter the bidding process early next week. Golisano was expected to submit a bid before the 5 p.m. Tuesday deadline, but that deadline came and went with only three known bids – current Sabres owner Terry Pegula, Donald Trump and a Toronto-based group led by Jon Bon Jovi – entered.

Those three bids have all been pushed through to the next phase, during which Commissioner Roger Goodell said more financial details will be shared with the prospective owners. But the Golisano move could explain why Morgan Stanley, the bank leading the sale process, extended the deadline for first-round bids. That deadline has been indefinitely extended, as the estate of Ralph Wilson Jr. would welcome any competition to drive the price up.

Any bid from Golisano would have to clear the $1.3 billion Pegula reportedly bid for the Bills. That price would set a record for an NFL team but could go up, as the first-round bids are not binding. Indeed, Golisano could have been playing a bit of rope-a-dope by letting the other bids come to pass before preparing his initial number.

Golisano sold the Sabres to Pegula in 2011 after buying the team in 2003 when it was near bankruptcy.

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