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Judge’s Ruling Against Kaiser’s Heirs Clears Path For Potential Sale of Broncos

Denver district judge Shelley I. Gilman ruled on Tuesday that the heirs of former Broncos owner Edward Kaiser Jr. cannot buy back any of the franchise, clearing the path for the possible sale of the team. 

A holding group that represents his estate petitioned, saying they had the right of refusal to any sale of the Broncos and highlighting when Kaiser sold it to Pat Bowlen in 1984. Kaiser died in 2012 and Bowlen died seven years later.

The judge determined that Kaiser’s heirs had no claim and the right of first refusal mentioned in the former agreement was not enforceable or valid. 

The Pat Bowlen Trust currently owns the team, and Denver CEO Joe Ellis, who is one of the trustees overseeing team operations, previously said if Bowlen’s children could not agree on a majority owner, it was likely the franchise would be sold, per ESPN

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An agreement is reportedly not expected. 

“We’re glad to put this issue behind us and move closer to transitioning ownership of the Broncos,” Ellis said Tuesday in a statement. “While our focus is on our head coaching search, we plan to make an announcement regarding ownership shortly after that hire is completed.”

Per Forbes, the franchise is worth just a tad short of $4 billion as of September. Former Denver star Peyton Manning has reportedly expressed interest in having an ownership piece of the franchise. 

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