Trump wants to buy Buffalo Bills
"I'm going to give it a heavy shot," Trump told the newspaper by phone from his office in Manhattan. "I would love to do it, and if I can do it I'm keeping it in Buffalo."
Trump first disclosed his interest in the Bills after owner Ralph Wilson Jr. died last month.
"I live in New York, and it's easier for me to go to Buffalo than any other place," said Trump, who once owned the USFL's New Jersey Generals. "Where am I going to move it, some place on the other side of the country, where I have to travel for five hours?"
Trump has reportedly met with Bills president Russ Brandon twice.
"I think it's going to go quickly," Trump said of a sale. "I hope it goes fast."
The Buffalo News previously reported that the Bills could be sold as soon as October.
Although Trump wants to own the Bills, he said he is not going to get into a bidding war for the team.
"Somebody could come out and bid through the roof for the Bills, something crazy," Trump said. 'In which case, I'm sorry I can't do anything about that. You have to be sane. But maybe there's not going to be any other bids. You never know with these things."
According to the Buffalo News, rock star Jon Bon Jovi reportedly could be the front man for Toronto company Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, but nobody from that supposed group has spoken definitively for the record.
Other potential suitors could come from Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula and former Sabres owner Tom Golisano.
Forbes estimates that Trump is worth over 13 times more than Bon Jovi at $3.9 billion to $290 million, which means Bon Jovi would need some financial backers in his group.
Any sale of an NFL team must be approved by 75 percent of NFL owners, thus 24 owners would have to vote in favor of the Bills being sold to a new buyer.
Trump insisted his casino dealings wouldn't impede his purchase and denied any hard feelings still exist from the USFL's $1.7 billion antitrust lawsuit against the NFL in 1984.
The NFL prohibits all personnel to have any involvement with gambling operations. Trump's name is on two Atlantic City casinos, the Trump Taj Mahal and the Trump Plaza, but he said he owns only a small stake in those properties anymore.
"It's a public company, and I could sell instantaneously," Trump said. "So that wouldn't be a conflict at all.
"I did very well with Atlantic City. It was a great experience. When we sold the casinos, they didn't change the name. But I'm not involved, not on the board."
Mary Wilson, the widow of the former owner, is now the controlling owner. Ralph Wilson died on March 25 at the age of 95. Mary Wilson, whom he married in 1999, was his third wife.
The Bills said in a statement on April 3 that the franchise will eventually be sold.
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