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Monday, April 12, 2010
Broncos interested in Rams' ownership

By Bill Williamson

The decision by St. Louis Rams minority owner Stan Kroenke to exercise his matching rights, allowing him the chance to purchase the remaining 60 percent share of the team will likely be of great interest to Denver owner Pat Bowlen.

Kroenke is the outright owner of the NBA’s Denver Nuggets and the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche. The NFL has cross-ownership rules which prohibit majority owners from owning other professional sports teams. At the NFL owners meetings last month, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell indicated the league would be reluctant to break the rules for Kroenke if he wanted to become the majority owner of the Rams.

Bowlen could play a big role. If he gives his blessing, it could begin the process of letting Kroenke circumvent the rules. But it is unlikely Bowlen (or any NFL owner) would relent.

Even though Bowlen and Kroenke have a good working relationship as Denver sports owners, it would take a lot for Bowlen to allow a competing NFL owner to get more resources from Bowlen’s home-base city.

Of course, if Kroenke’s sells the hockey and basketball teams in Denver, there will be no issues for the NFL and for Bowlen.

ESPN's Adam Schefter believes Kroenke can avoid the cross-ownership issue this way.