Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta reportedly among potential Commanders buyers
Another suitor has entered the mix to buy the Washington Commanders.
Houston Rockets team owner Tilman Fertitta reportedly submitted a bid to purchase the NFL team, according to the Washington Post, but is also not believed to be a frontrunner. Fertitta reportedly offered around $5.5 billion to the Commanders and visited the team's training facility in Ashburn, Virginia. That number is well below the $7 billion current owner Dan Snyder reportedly wants for his franchise.
Fertitta, 65, is the second known bidder for the Commanders alongside fellow NBA owner Josh Harris, who owns the Philadelphia 76ers as well as the New Jersey Devils of the NHL. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who is the third-richest person in the world, is reportedly interested but banned from placing a bid, according to multiple reports. Bezos reportedly still hired an investment firm to explore a possible bid.
Fertitta bought the Rockets in 2017 for $2.2 billion and has an estimated net worth of $8.1 billion, according to Forbes. He is the owner and CEO of Fertitta Entertainment Inc., which also owns Landry’s, a Texas-based dining and hospitality company, and the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casinos.
If either Fertitta or Harris wins the bid, it would mark the fourth owner who controls a team in both the NBA and NFL. The others are the Kroenke family, whose company owns the Denver Nuggets and Los Angeles Rams (as well as the Colorado Avalanche, Colorado Rapids and Arsenal F.C.), Gayle Benson, who owns the New Orleans Pelicans and the New Orleans Saints, and Jody Allen, who owns the Portland Trail Blazers and Seattle Seahawks.
Snyder and his wife, Tanya, announced their intention to explore possible transactions around the team when they hired Bank of America in November. Snyder bought the team for $800 million in 1999.
No sale is expected until the NFL owner's meeting in March. Two other NFL teams have been sold in the past five years: The Walton-Penner group the Denver Broncos for $4.65 billion in 2022 and David Tepper bought the Carolina Panthers in 2018.