The Carolina Panthers announced Wednesday that Pittsburgh Steelers minority owner David Tepper signed a deal to purchase the team. That means Sean “Diddy” “Love” Combs’ hopes of making history have been dashed.
The Panthers are set to sell for a record $2.2 billion, a source disclosed to the Charlotte Observer May 16. That’s more than the $1.4 billion the Buffalo Bills were sold for in 2014.
“I am thrilled to have been selected to be the next owner of the Carolina Panthers,” Temper, founder and president of global hedge fund Appaloosa Management, L.P. said in a statement. “I have learned a great deal about the community and the team over the past several months and look forward to becoming part of the Carolinas. I want to thank Jerry Richardson and the other Panthers partners for all they have done to establish and develop the NFL in the Carolinas. It has been a remarkable 25-year journey and I promise to build upon the Panthers’ success on the field and in the community.”
“I look forward to turning the stewardship of the Panthers over to David Tepper,” added founder and former owner Richardson, who put the team up for sale following “workplace misconduct” allegations. “I have enjoyed getting to know him in this process and am confident that he will provide the organization with great leadership in both its football and community initiatives. I wish David and his family the very best as they enter this exciting new phase of their lives.”
Diddy, who has yet to publicly weigh in on the sale, tweeted in December that he wanted to make history as the first Black majority owner of an NFL team.
“I would like to buy the @Panthers. Spread the word. Retweet!” he said. “There are no majority African American NFL owners. Let’s make history.”
Diddy got support from Golden State Warriors star Steph Curry and free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick, too. But the dream hit a wall in March when the Panthers’ growing purchase price forced Fanatics sports apparel billionaire Michael Rub to drop out. Rubin had been putting together a group of investors, which included Diddy and Curry.
After the NFL gives its approval, the multi-billion dollar deal is set to close in July.