Pittsburgh Penguins to Be Sold to Fenway Sports Group Pending NHL Approval

Tyler Conway@@jtylerconwayFeatured Columnist IVNovember 29, 2021

MONTREAL, QC - NOVEMBER 18: View of a Pittsburgh Penguins logo on a jersey during the Pittsburgh Penguins versus the Montreal Canadiens game on November 18, 2021, at Bell Centre in Montreal, QC (Photo by David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Fenway Sports Group reached an agreement to buy a controlling interest in the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday, pending NHL approval.

 "The Pittsburgh Penguins are a premier National Hockey League franchise with a very strong organization, a terrific history and a vibrant, passionate fan base," FSG Chairman Tom Werner said in a statement. "We will work diligently to continue building on the remarkable Penguins' tradition of championships and exciting play.

"We are particularly excited to welcome Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle to FSG and have the utmost respect for all they have done to build the Penguins into the perennially successful franchise we know today. We look forward to working with Mario, Ron and the entire Penguins front office team."

Mario Lemieux and Ron Burkle will remain with the ownership group and be "closely aligned" with FSG. Lemieux, the former Penguins great, famously helped save the franchise from relocation by purchasing it in 1999 alongside Burkle.

No purchase price was made public, but it was reported by Dejan Kovacevic of DK Pittsburgh Sports to be around $900 million. Lemieux and Burkle originally purchased the franchise for $107 million. 

FSG owns the Boston Red Sox, Liverpool Football Club and is part owner of Roush Fenway Keselowski Racing. The company has a valuation of $7 billion.

It's a virtual certainty the Penguins franchise will see an influx of cash with its new ownership group, which will want to make a splash and return to Stanley Cup contention as soon as possible. Pittsburgh has made the playoffs in each of the last 15 seasons but hasn't gotten out of the second round since winning the 2017 Stanley Cup.

The team's aging roster could use an influx of youth, which may come when the new group takes hold and begins reshaping the franchise in its vision.