The entire time that the Buffalo Bills have been preparing for the 2014 regular season during training camp and their multiple stops on the road, most everything has been underlined by the impending sale of the team. The future of the franchise is on the line and multiple jobs in the organization could depend on who gets selected as the winning bidder.
Through all those thoughts, there have been four identified bidders on the Bills during the process -- with only two groups that have made the majority of headlines: Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula and his wife Kim, and the Toronto-based group fronted by Jon Bon Jovi. Still a few weeks before binding bids will be made to the estate of Ralph Wilson, a new report has indicated that things may be trending in a certain way.
And, It's a direction that will likely draw cheers from Bills fans that have been paying close attention to the sale.
According to Tim Graham of The Buffalo News, the franchise is now "Pegula's to lose," and that their competition is not as strong as first thought. Graham also tweeted that the Toronto-based group with Bon Jovi, Larry Tanenbaum and Edward Rogers is both "unfocused" and "disorganized" in their attempt to win the franchise.
Graham also wrote that an educated source told him that the Bills will remain in western New York "for a very, very long time whether they get a new stadium or not."
Outside of the two aforementioned main players, both Donald Trump and Tom Golisano have also made it through to the next stage as finalists in the sale process. According to John Wawrow of The Associated Press, three of the finalists have already gone to a presentation performed by officials of the Bills. The meeting was to give each prospective owner "extensive financial and background information on the franchise."
Pegula, the Bon Jovi-led Toronto group and Trump have all sat through those meetings within the past two weeks, according to Wawrow's report.
The team is expected to continue to march through the sale process and have binding bids due around the start of September. Once binding bids are in the estate can start to narrow down the candidates and ultimately select a winner, with the expectation and hope that the new owner(s) can be ratified at the league's upcoming meetings on October 7-8.