As mentioned in the Dynamo season preview a few weeks ago, all reports indicate that “The Golden Boy” Oscar De La Hoya will soon become part owner of the two-time defending MLS Cup champion Houston Dynamo.
According to recently published reports coming out of Houston, both De La Hoya and his business partner, Gabriel Brener, are each purchasing 25% of the team, leaving current owner AEG with the remaining 50%. Both De La Hoya and Brener will have to plop down an estimated $10 million though to get the deal done. That shouldn’t be a problem for Oscar though as he is, after all, the richest boxer in the history of the sport.
This deal would almost finalize AEG’s promise to sell off its ownership interests in all of its MLS squads except for the highly profitable LA Galaxy.
De La Hoya recently told a Houston-based radio station that he was thrilled to have the opportunity to become involved with MLS. But it should really be the MLS who is thrilled to have De La Hoya. Why?
Well, De La Hoya is one of the most famous Mexican-American celebrities in the world and his endorsement of MLS and ownership of an MLS squad should bring the league international attention and new viewers.
Although he was not the best fighter of his generation (losing to Trinidad, Hopkins, and Mayweather), De La Hoya is definitely the most marketable and the most business savvy. Unlike many great fighters before him who were abused by their relationships with promoters, De La Hoya broke the mold by founding his own company to promote fights. As a result, De La Hoya is now one of the most powerful men in the boxing world.
The decision to make public AEG’s decision to sell to De La Hoya this week is not an accident. At the end of this week, the Houston city council is voting on a proposal to set aside approximately $15 million dollars to buy land near downtown to build a soccer specific stadium.
Now that the Dynamo have De La Hoya, the city council should feel confident that the Dynamo will be a team regularly atop both the league standings and on the tip of observers’ tongues. The addition of his brand should make the Dynamo more profitable, and could be a deciding factor when the city council votes later this week.
So, in addition to the Coen Brothers, Daniel Day Lewis and Javier Bardem, it looks like Houston will be receiving an Oscar this February…