During a recent interview with GQ, rock star Jon Bon Jovi spoke out on his attempt to purchase the Buffalo Bills franchise that was unsuccessful because President Donald Trump thwarted the musician’s plans.
Previous to Trump’s presidency, the businessman tried to buy the Buffalo-based football team, as well. During his pursuit of the franchise, Trump pushed other potential buyers out of the way, including Bon Jovi. Indeed, the famous lead singer spearheaded a potential group that became Trump’s biggest competition during the buying process.
In the GQ article, Bon Jovi recalled Trump’s effort to ruin his group’s bid for the Bills. Supposedly, the future president hired Republican strategist and lobbyist Michael Caputo to tarnish the Bon Jovi group’s chances. Trump hired Caputo to plant the idea within the public that if the musician’s group succeeded in purchasing the franchise, they would move the team to Toronto, Canada.
Additionally, Trump also inflated his net worth to $4.26 billion to help improve his bid for the team. Trump’s former personal attorney Michael Cohen testified before Congress in 2019, and touched on the matter. In fact, during the hearing, Cohen admitted under oath to Trump’s underhanded tactics.
In the end, neither Trump nor Bon Jovi’s group won the bid despite their best efforts. Businessman Terry Pegula won the bid for the football franchise. Locals preferred Pegula since he already owned multiple other Western New York sports franchises, including the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres.
Bon Jovi is Still Resentful Over Missing Out on Bills Ownership
The rocker says his group were ready to write the check to buy the NFL franchise for any asking price. Yet, they never got a second meeting after Pegula made a bold move that won him the team. Pegula never left the negotiating table, and $1.4 billion later, he was the new owner of the Buffalo Bills.
“We showed up with a billion three, sitting there with a [check],” Bon Jovi explained in the interview. “And we could have easily bought it at any price. We didn’t get to get back in the room. [Pegula] said, ‘What do I have to do to not leave this table without owning the team?'”
However, Bon Jovi is still holding a grudge against Trump, along with the city of Buffalo itself.
“I will never go back to Buffalo, New York. I won’t ever go back to the city of Buffalo,” Bon Jovi said begrudgingly. “You will never see my face in Buffalo ever. I have knocked it off the map.”
Although one would assume Bon Jovi exaggerated when he made his statement about never returning to Buffalo, the singer has stood firm to date. In the six years since his group’s failed purchase of the Bills, Bon Jovi has not stepped one foot in the city.
In 2013, his band played a show in Darien, New York – about 30 miles from Buffalo. Past that, the rock band has not returned to the area since. During both North American legs of the 2017-2019 This House Is Not For Sale tour, Bon Jovi bypassed Western New York entirely.