Branding the World of Sports

New sheriff in town for the Miami Dolphins

Posted by ZA on February 27, 2008

Just when it seemed like the tumultuous offseason for the Miami Dolphins had finally come to a close…another bombshell.  And this big news will certainly have the longest term affect on the storied franchise.  Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga agrees to sell a 50% stake in the team to New York real estate guru Stephen Ross.

The deal had Ross paying a half a billion dollars to obtain an equal ownership stake, with Huizenga, in the Fins.  Ross also gains an equal share in Dolphins Stadium and are around Dolphins Stadium that can be used for development.  Ross is a sports fanatic, who has made huge donations to his alma mater, Michigan University.  Ross has pledged over $100 Million to the Wolverines, and the business school at UM is named after him.  Ross also tried to buy a minority stake in the Dolphins in the early 90’s, but was defeated in his bid by current Dolphins owner Huizenga.

What will the new ownership mean to the Dolphins?  Probably not much over the next few years.  Huizenga already brought in Bill Parcells over this offseason to control all of the football operations.  Parcells will control the direction of the team over the next 2-3 (of his 4 year contract) before retiring to leave the rebuilding to someone new.  And Huizenga will be the face of the Miami football team to the NFL and other 31 owners.  But the move definitely signals a changing of the guard, and I expect Huizenga to ‘exit stage left’ in 2 years and turn over total control of the team to Ross.

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