In a full-length piece, Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com expands on his report from several days ago that Buffalo Sabres’ owner Terry Pegula is the clear favorite to buy the Bills. As La Canfora writes, Pegula “has expressed a willingness to confidants to do whatever he has to do to get the team,” even if the NFL is able to find another bidder for the club and create something of an “auction scenario.” Such an auction could push the price tag further above the current estimate of $1.1 to $1.4 billion, but Pegula is apparently prepared to handle that type of increase.
Because he intends to keep the team in Buffalo beyond 2020–when the Bills’ stadium lease expires–Pegula certainly enjoys a great deal of public support. Fortunately for Bills fans, the Toronto-based group formerly led by Jon Bon Jovi, which would be hoping for a relocation to Ontario at some point in the future, has faced a number of internal struggles and is no longer a viable candidate. La Canfora does note that a move to Toronto may still be in the best financial interest of the team and the league, but “there are numerous options to exhaust in New York before reaching that point.”
Formal, binding bids for the team are due in the middle of this month. Once they are in, the trust of late owner Ralph Wilson will determine a winner, and the league’s other 31 owners will vote to determine if the winner will indeed become the new owner of the Bills. La Canfora expects that vote to happen during the league’s annual fall meetings, which will take place October 7-8 in New York.