Los Angeles Lakers icon Magic Johnson has officially thrown his hat into the ring in the race to purchase the Washington Commanders, according to esteemed sports news outlet Sportico, with journalists Scott Soshnick and Eben Nova-Williams reporting on the latest development. Johnson, a former NBA star, will be joining forces with Philadelphia 76ers and New Jersey Devils owner, Josh Harris, in this ambitious endeavor.
Sources reveal that Johnson brings both financial backing and expertise to the Commanders’ bid, but the exact amount of capital he is contributing remains undisclosed at this stage. This isn’t the first time Magic and Harris have teamed up in an attempt to buy a professional sports team. They previously formed a bidding group with hopes of acquiring the Denver Broncos, but the franchise was ultimately sold to the Walton-Penner family in August, a move that seemingly didn’t deter the determined duo from pursuing their passion for team ownership.
Since hanging up his basketball shoes back in 1996, Magic Johnson has ventured into several successful business ventures, establishing a notable reputation as a savvy entrepreneur. Notably, he is a part of the ownership group that holds stakes in the esteemed Los Angeles Dodgers and has invested in both the Los Angeles Sparks of the WNBA and MLS’ Los Angeles FC. Moreover, Johnson has his entrepreneurial fingers in other pies, having franchised movie theaters, Starbucks stores, fast-food outlets, and gyms, as Sportico has reported.
Josh Harris, the influential managing partner of the Philadelphia 76ers and co-managing partner of the New Jersey Devils, has his own impressive portfolio in the sports ownership realm. He even boasts a stake in the prestigious Premier League side Crystal Palace, and owns the Prudential Center, which serves as the home arena for the New Jersey Devils. Harris’ wealth has been estimated at an impressive $5.7 billion by Forbes, while his fellow co-founder of Danaher, Mitchell Rales, is also part of the ambitious bidding group for the Commanders, with a net worth of $5.5 billion.
The Washington Commanders are currently under the microscope as they are expected to be sold during this offseason. The decision came after owners Daniel and Tanya Snyder enlisted the services of Bank of America in November to explore potential transactions. The situation arose amid investigations into allegations of a toxic workplace environment and financial improprieties. Consequently, Daniel Snyder and his wife have vacated the team’s facility in preparation for the impending sale, as reported by Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio on March 16.
The franchise’s history dates back to 1999 when Daniel Snyder initially purchased the team for $800 million. Since then, the Commanders’ value has skyrocketed, with Forbes now estimating their worth to be a staggering $5.6 billion.
As the bidding group led by Magic Johnson and Josh Harris vies for ownership of the Washington Commanders, football fans and sports enthusiasts alike are eagerly awaiting the outcome of this high-stakes contest, which could potentially reshape the future of this storied franchise. With two prominent and wealthy figures at the helm, the Commanders’ destiny is firmly in their hands as they seek to secure the reins of one of the NFL’s most cherished teams.