Advertisement
City

Moving the Buffalo Bills to Toronto may be virtually impossible

Moving the Buffalo Bills to Toronto may be virtually impossible
The Bills play the Miami Dolphins at Rogers Centre in 2008. (Image: gbalogh)

Talk of a wealthy buyer moving the Buffalo Bills NFL franchise over the border to Toronto has been constant since the death of Ralph Wilson, the team’s long-time owner. (At least one group of investors is reportedly interested in making it happen.) Except now, QMI is saying that Toronto’s pigskin dreams never stood a chance.

The catch is in an obscure clause in the Bills’ non-relocation agreement—a contract between the team, Erie County, and New York state. According to QMI, this clause forbids the Bills’ ownership from selling the team to “any person who, to the Bills’ knowledge, has an intention to relocate, transfer or otherwise move the team,” and says the restriction can only be waived with permission from state and county officials. The agreement reportedly doesn’t expire until 2023.

Equally vexing for anyone interested in moving the team is the fact that its legal hold on its current stadium would be incredibly difficult to break. QMI has reported that the stadium lease couldn’t be terminated until at least 2020, and then only if the team’s owner was willing to pay a $24.4 million fee.

And so while an eventual Toronto move isn’t an outright impossibility, making it happen would almost certainly require some really intense lawyering. Don’t give up your Argos season tickets just yet.

NEVER MISS A TORONTO LIFE STORY

Sign up for This City, our free newsletter about everything that matters right now in Toronto politics, sports, business, culture, society and more.

By signing up, you agree to our terms of use and privacy policy.
You may unsubscribe at any time.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The Latest

Everything to eat at Waterworks Food Hall, the new 55,000 square-foot, European-style destination for gourmet bites
Food & Drink

Everything to eat at Waterworks Food Hall, the new 55,000 square-foot, European-style destination for gourmet bites