The Philadelphia Eagles have agreed to sell the majority stake in the Philadelphia 76ers to a consortium led by a New Jersey firm that is planning to build a $300-million indoor stadium for the NFL.
The consortium is owned by the Delaware-based Delaware-born billionaire Carl Icahn.
It will operate the Philadelphia arena, which is slated to open in 2019.
The deal is the first major NFL asset sale since the end of the 2011-2012 lockout.
Icahn, whose company Icahn Enterprises has been involved in a number of sports projects, is chairman of the Philadelphia Eagles.
He has been critical of the NFL’s handling of the lockout and said last month he plans to sue the league.
Icannon is one of several prominent Republicans in Washington who have taken a hard line against the lockout, with some lawmakers urging the league to negotiate a settlement and to keep the lockout in place.
Icann and his co-chairman, Mark Cuban, have long pushed for the league’s reinstatement.
Icancins chief executive, Gary Bettman, has said he expects the lockout to end by 2019, though the NFL is still negotiating with the league about a new contract.
Icanyns investment in the team and arena will pay for the purchase price of the stadium, which will be paid for by an additional $150 million from the sale of the team.
Icawan Enterprises CEO John Bercovici, who was an adviser to the team before Icahn’s purchase, said the deal is a “transformative” investment for the city and state of Pennsylvania.
“It’s going to bring great economic development to our city, and it’s going.
It’s a good investment,” Bercicsi said.
Bettman has said Icawans ownership in the Sixers was “not the best fit” for the team, but the owner and team officials have been in discussions about reviving the franchise.
Icánns involvement has been an issue for the Eagles since Icawanos ownership in Philadelphia was revealed.
In 2014, Icawenos purchased a stake in a nearby shopping mall, and the city’s top prosecutor in 2011 announced that the Eagles had violated a city-owned housing agreement.
That agreement prohibits the team from occupying any vacant or unoccupied buildings on city property.
The NBA is also pursuing a legal battle with the city over the Eagles relocation to Philadelphia, which was announced last month.
Icahns ownership in both the Sixers and Sixers-branded apparel company is subject to a state law requiring a 60-day public comment period before an approval can be granted for the stadium deal.
Icans ownership of the NBA franchise has been the subject of a number legal challenges, including lawsuits in several states over allegations that it is not in full compliance with state and federal law.
Icacis ownership has been challenged in multiple court cases, including one filed in New Jersey.
The city of Philadelphia is also facing a lawsuit by Icawas attorney general.
The lawsuit is the latest legal challenge to the Philadelphia ownership, which has been in limbo since Icancis purchase in 2014.
Icas legal team has also filed lawsuits in New York, Michigan, Minnesota and Florida, in which it is seeking to block the city from implementing its tax-increment financing plan, which could be financed with a portion of Icawancs proceeds from the deal.
CNBC’s Eric Binsinger and AP sports reporter Jim Drinkard contributed to this report.
Follow AP Sports Writer Matt Fortuna on Twitter at twitter.com/mattfortunaAP and Facebook at facebook.com/_matt.fortunasAP.