Done Deal

The sale of the Dolphins to Stephen Ross is now complete. Ross and former owner Wayne Huizenga announced on Tuesday that Ross has closed on the purchase of an additional 45 percent of the team and Dolphin Stadium. Ross now has 95 percent ownership, with Huizenga having 5 percent of the team and stadium, as well as 50 percent of the land.

The sale of the additional 45 percent of the Dolphins was pre-approved by the NFL at its October league meeting. Effective immediately, Ross will assume the responsibility of Managing General Partner of the team and the stadium.

"I want to thank Wayne for his outstanding stewardship of the Dolphins during his years as the team's owner," Ross said in a statement released by the team. "During that time he transformed the South Florida sports landscape and has been a model owner of the Dolphins. I know I join all our fans in expressing our appreciation to Wayne for all he has done for this community.

"In addition, I want to assure Dolphin fans that I share Wayne's same passion to win and will do everything I can to support Bill Parcells in his leadership of football operations. I also want to thank Jeff Ireland, Tony Sparano, and the entire football staff as they continue the mission they began a year ago to bring the Dolphins back to the Super Bowl."

Said Huizenga: "It's been a privilege and honor to have served the fans of this special franchise as principal owner, and with the closing of the sale I want to wish Steve well in his new role as the team's Managing General Partner," said Huizenga. "After 19 seasons of ownership, the sale represents a bittersweet moment for me, but the timing is right to complete it. I know under Steve's leadership the Dolphins are in outstanding hands. We are still a 5 percent partner in the franchise and the stadium. The Huizenga family and organization will do everything we can to support Steve and the team for the benefit of all of South Florida."

From a team standpoint, the bigger consequence of the ownership change, of course, is what happens with Bill Parcells.

He reportedly has a clause in his contract that now gives him 30 days to walk away from the Dolphins while still getting paid for the last three years of his four-year contract.

Huizenga said after the season that Parcells had told him he was sticking around, but Parcells hasn't said anything publicly.


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