MLS sells Real Salt Lake to Palace part-owner Blitzer

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David Blitzer, owner of the NBA Philadelphia 76ers among several sports holdings, was part of the group approved Wednesday as the new owners of Major League Soccer's Real Salt Lake (AFP/Tim Nwachukwu)

David Blitzer, a part owner of Premier League side Crystal Palace among multiple sport holdings, has purchased Major League Soccer's Real Salt Lake, MLS commissioner Don Garber said Wednesday.

MLS club owners unanimously approved the sale of the club, its home stadium, training acamdey and headquarters to Blitzer and Smith Entertainment Group.

"We look forward to leveraging our experiences to take Real Salt Lake to even greater heights," Blitzer said.

MLS has been trying to sell the club since August of 2020, when controversy erupted over past use of racist language by former owner Dell Loy Hansen and the league announced he would sell the team and its holdings.

The league took over the sale process last January while Real Salt Lake charged to the MLS Western Conference final before being ousted from the playoffs.

Blitzer's sports empire includes Crystal Palace and Bundesliga side Augsburg, the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers and NHL's New Jersey Devils while Ryan Smith and his group own the NBA's Utah Jazz.

"Real Salt Lake is an amazing asset for Utah, exemplifies the way we want to invest and be involved here, and David Blitzer is the perfect partner," Smith said.

The club kicks off the 2022 MLS season next month.

"The combination of David Blitzer and Ryan Smith's SEG form a dream partnership for Real Salt Lake," Garber said.

"David and Ryan's teams have become synonymous with how athletics and community intersect, as they have demonstrated leading world-class organizations outside of professional soccer."

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