NFL's Grubman Says Anschutz Shopping AEG Froze Stadium Push
NFL Exec VP/Business Ventures Eric Grubman said that the decision by AEG Chair Phil Anschutz to put his company up for sale last year paralyzed its effort to move ahead with plans for an NFL stadium in downtown L.A. Grubman during the IMG World Congress of Sports said, “No owner, and certainly not the NFL, is going to go in and create something that has tremendous value for someone who’s taking the capital and leaving. I have a tremendous amount of respect for Mr. Anschutz. He’s smart. He’s got great timing. He’s also resolute.” Grubman said he is not sure how former AEG President & CEO Tim Leiweke's departure will affect AEG's efforts to get a stadium built.
Grubman said the NFL is in a place now where it is willing to risk capital and pledge to bring multiple Super Bowls to L.A. if a stadium is built. But for a deal to get done, competing developers are going to have to change their current proposals. Grubman rejected the idea that the NFL is not engaged in an effort to bring a team to L.A. He said the city remains an important opportunity for the NFL and it will continue to spend time exploring whether or not it can bring a team there.
For more from this year’s World Congress of Sports, read the On The Ground blog, which includes more detailed reports from the sessions, slide shows and other material.