Stan Kroenke wants to sell Rams to his wife

When Rams minority owner Stan Kroenke exercised his right to purchase 60 percent of the franchise to go with the 40 percent he already owns, it was believed that Kroenke would sell the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche and the NBA’s Denver Nuggets to a member of his family (presumably his billionaire wife), so that Kroenke could then own the Rams.

As it turns out, Kroenke wants his wife to own the Rams.

According to Daniel Kaplan of SportsBusiness Journal, Kroenke made the request last week at a meeting of the league’s finance committee.  Kroenke’s proposal included other possibilities, the details of which have not been reported.

The problem, in our view, is whether the league would allow majority ownership of the team to pass through Kroenke to Ann Walton Kroenke.  It’s the only way to circumvent the effort of Shahid Khan to purchase from the children of Georgia Frontiere controlling interest in the franchise — but it necessarily would skirt the cross-ownership rules, since Kroenke would own (even if only for an instant) the Rams at a time when he owns two other pro sports teams in the Denver market.

As the league explained in 2003 when the Glazer family wanted to add the L.A. Dodgers to a portfolio that includes the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the key moving forward will be complete separation of management.  Still, before Ann Walton Kroenke can own the Rams, Stan Kroenke will have to own 100 percent of it.

In our view, the league should reject this approach.  If Ann Walton Kroenke wanted to own 60 percent of the Rams, she should have submitted a bid.  But with Shahid Khan also submitting a bid, a bidding war could have erupted, forcing the price of the 60-percent chunk even higher.  So Stan Kroenke opted instead to remain silent, and he then chose to exercise his contractual right to match the offer made by Khan.

But Kroenke, not his wife, holds that right.  It therefore would be unfair to Khan — and to Chip Rosenbloom and Lucia Rodriguez — to allow Kroenke to blur the lines temporarily in the hopes of shifting the team into his wife’s control.  The procedure also will feed suspicions that it’s all a sham, and that Stan Kroenke essentially will be calling the shots, at a minimum via pillow talk.

Thus, the fact that Kroenke has proposed ownership of the Rams by his wife makes us think that the better approach for the NFL will be to block Kroenke’s from buying the Rams unless and until he sells the Avalanche and the Nuggets to someone to whom he’s not related by blood or marriage.

20 responses to “Stan Kroenke wants to sell Rams to his wife

  1. Hey, the last time a woman owned the Rams, they won the Super Bowl. Of course, they sucked a long time before that. Maybe Vermiel will be getting a call soon.

  2. Signs that it is too early to read Florio’s headlines: I thought the title of this was “Stan Kroenke wants to sell Rams his wife” haha

  3. Get ready for new drapes and slip covers in the locker room and luxury boxes.

  4. Arthur Blank called and stated that he thought it would be fine as long as Kroenke’s wife had a “college degree”…..and a “football IQ” as high as his.
    This will now be referred to as “The Arthur Blank Rule” to prequalify owners of NFL teams.

  5. Before he makes this move, I hope he has a heart-to-heart phone call with Frank McCourt, owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, who is going through a divorce, whose wife just got an order for $600,000+ monthly support payments — and whose wife is contesting who really is the owner of the team.

  6. The NFL’s cross-ownership rule is stupid and should be eliminated anyway…it is the only sport that has it as far as I know. The dude who owned the Pistons also owned the Tampa Bay Lightening and it didn’t seem to hurt anything as he was winning championships with both teams a few years back.

  7. Seems there is an easy way to avoid your “pass through” issue: He should make a tax-free transfer of the cash to his wife and allow her to buy the team directly. Or, he should create a trust with her as the beneficiary and himself as the trustee, place the funds into the trust and use those funds to purchase the team. Problem solved. I’ll bet he is going to pay some lawyers a lot of money for that kind of advice!

  8. The team has to pass through Kroenke because he’s the only one who, as part of his initial purchase agreement, can match the bid by Khan. Stan’s wife has plenty of money to buy the Rams but she didn’t bid on the team when it was for sale.

  9. ” blur the lines temporarily in the hopes of shifting the team into his wife’s control. “……isn’t it the same damn thing if he transfers ownership of the Avs and Nuggets to his wife……either enforce the rules with the intent behind the rules or don’t make a big deal out of it.

  10. “The procedure also will feed suspicions that it’s all a sham, and that Stan Kroenke essentially will be calling the shots, at a minimum via pillow talk.”
    …and after they move back west ,
    The L.A. Shams
    The Jaguar season ticket holder

  11. Haha. This is a comical circumvention of a comical rule. The rule shouldn’t exist. So congrats to Kroenke for doing this.

  12. There is no point to the cross-ownership rule.
    The owners of the Buccaneers also own an English soccer team and that’s worked out, uh…
    Nevermind that, but the owner of the Browns also own an English soccer team and that’s, uh…
    anyway, I’m sure it’s not a big deal.

  13. He could buy the Rams, move out to LA and be in the same situation as the Dodgers are now. Who knows, maybe they’ll split the team and have the LA Rams and the Anaheim Rams Of LA. 🙂

  14. This story would be much more interesting if Stan Kroenke was trying to sell his wife to the Rams…

  15. i hope for the fans of St Louis that this gets done quick. Ownership limbo is never good for a sports team. Although Stan owning 40% already might make it easier..
    Whenever they build a new stadium there I wonder if it’ll be called Walmart Stadium

  16. Good grief. Selling it to his wife? That’s a loophole big enough to drive a luxury jet full of Wal-Mart executives through.
    The rule has no meaning if this type of sale is allowed. If this is allowed, then shame on everyone who is responsible for enforcing this sham of a regulation.

  17. Why do a bunch of damn foriegners want to buy an NFL team anyway? Guess Khan could always strap bombs to a football and throw picks on purpose to win, or Rodriguez could move them to mexico in the first-ever reverse-migration on the southern border… Alllah akbar mi amigo! Then there’s always a guy named Chip, but that’s just wrong.

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