UB professor confident in Bills' future in WNY

Aug 15, 2014

An expert in sports law believes the new owner of the Buffalo Bills, whoever that might be, won't be leaving the area anytime soon.

U.B. Adjunct Professor Nellie Drew say it's legally complex to move a sports team. She speaks from years of involvement with the Buffalo Sabres and the National Hockey League.

Besides the lease for the present stadium, Drew says leagues are very reluctant to allow teams to move unless there are very solid reasons. 

"The NFL constitution and bylaws have rules that restrict the transfer of teams," Drew said.

"Obviously, anything is subject to litigation. Having said that, the fact the leagues have these rules has been upheld numerous times."

Owners of all teams vote on one of their fellow owners wanting to move to a new city. Drew says teams want goodwill with those who buy game tickets or who might buy tickets or season tickets. Telling those fans the team might move creates uncertainties and that's not good in marketing when the product, the team and the game, is always a risky business.