New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft said Jeff Bezos “is probably one of the most competent businesspeople in the world” who would make a “great owner” if he bought the NFL’s Washington Commanders.
Kraft, one of the NFL’s most powerful owners, hailed Bezos as a “tremendous operator” when asked about reports that the Amazon founder was looking into buying the Washington team from Daniel Snyder.
“For those of us that are privileged to own NFL franchises — it’s the one thing more than anything that I believe builds community and we need good operating people in their individual towns,” Kraft told Neil Cavuto of Fox Business Network.
“I think Jeff would be a great owner,” Kraft said.
Last month, The Post was the first to report the growing chatter in business circles indicating that Bezos was looking to clear the way for a purchase of the Washington Commanders by selling The Washington Post.
The news site Front Office Sports reported last month that Bank of America, which was hired by Snyder to find a buyer for the team, “continues to court Bezos — even if there are indications that Snyder doesn’t want to sell” to the mogul.
Snyder is reportedly upset with Bezos over his newspaper’s critical coverage of his stewardship of the Washington team.
The embittered owner suspects that Bezos directed Washington Post journalists to turn up the heat on Snyder in order to eventually get him to sell the team to the Amazon founder.
A representative for Bezos has denied that The Washington Post is for sale.
Kraft said he was not “privy” to any information about the future of the Commanders.
Kraft, the Boston native who made his fortune in paper packaging, real estate and private equity, purchased his beloved Patriots for $172 million in 1994. At the time, it was the most ever paid for an NFL team.
Since then, the value of sports franchises — particularly NFL teams — has exploded.
Last year, Forbes valued the Pats, who have won six Super Bowl titles under Kraft’s watch, at $6.4 billion.
When asked by Cavuto on Fox Business Network whether he had plans to sell the Patriots, Kraft gave an emphatic response, insisting: “I’m never selling it.”
“After my family, the New England Patriots is the most important thing in my life,” Kraft said.
“It’s not a business,” he said of the team. “It’s really part of my family, it’s part of the community.”
“If we do well, it makes the whole region better and I love being in the locker room, being around the players.”
“I just pinch myself that I’ve been so privileged to own a franchise in my hometown.”
Kraft added: “The good Lord was very kind to allow that to happen.”
“We’ve set it up so it hopefully stays in the family for many decades to come,” Kraft said.
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