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Second thoughts

Bon Jovi bid isn't a big hit with Buffalo

By Jeremy Muck

This article was published August 6, 2014 at 3:16 a.m.

Buffalo Bills fan Jacob Gauda shows off his “No Bon Jovi” shirt during Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement ceremonies Saturday in Canton, Ohio. Gauda and most Bills fans don’t believe Jon Bon Jovi and a Toronto-based group will keep the NFL team in Buffalo.

Jon Bon Jovi's bid to become part-owner of an NFL franchise isn't even halfway there.

It's livin' on a prayer.

The Toronto Sun reported Tuesday that a Toronto-based group's initial bid to buy the Buffalo Bills was rejected last week by Morgan Stanley, the investment bank conducting the sale of the NFL club for the trust of late Bills owner Ralph Wilson.

The group is comprised of Bon Jovi, Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment chairman Larry Tanenbaum and Edward Rogers and his family, who control Canada's top telecommunications empire, Rogers Communications, Inc.

Reportedly, the bid was uncompetitively low and too much doubt has crept in regarding the group.

Despite Bon Jovi's letter to The Buffalo News over the weekend that attempted to convince Bills fans that the rock star's group intends to keep the team in western New York, most fans don't believe the frontman. Nowhere in the letter did it say that Bon Jovi vowed to keep the Bills in Buffalo for the long term.

The group will get a second chance to bid on the Bills. Other suitors for the Bills include businessman Donald Trump and Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula.

Playing possum

The Rally Monkey and the Rally Squirrel have been symbols of World Series championship teams for the Anaheim Angels and St. Louis Cardinals.

Could the Rally Possum be the next animal to rally a team to a championship?

In the bottom of the 10th inning Monday night at the O.co Coliseum, a possum was lurking down the left field warning track while the Oakland A's -- who are in first place in the American League West -- were at bat against the Tampa Bay Rays.

Catcher Derek Norris followed with a two-out single to give Oakland a 3-2 victory over Tampa Bay as the A's remained in first place in the American League West despite stranding 18 men on base during the game.

The possum has been seen before at the Coliseum by several players.

"We're going to have to give him a name or get him a jersey," starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija said. "We'll keep feeding him, and as long as he keeps giving us enough wins, we'll be all right."

Norris noticed the possum while he was facing Rays reliever Grant Balfour.

"I thought it was a huge rat for about two minutes, then I saw it turn and was like, 'Aw, it's a little possum,' " Norris said. "I thought it was a huge rat, which would fit perfectly with the way things have shaped up here the last few years."

Norris was referring to the sewage problems at the Coliseum in recent years.

Pay up?

One swimmer is happy that Michael Phelps has returned to competitive swimming.

Ryan Lochte, 30, a five-time Olympic gold medalist, bet Phelps, 29, in 2012 that he'd return to the sport before the Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Sure enough, Phelps, who has won 18 Olympic gold medals and 22 overall, ended his retirement earlier this year.

"I said, 'I guarantee you'll be back before the Olympics,' " Lochte told USA Today. "He's like, 'No way, I'm done.'

"He owes me some money."

SPORTS QUIZ

What Arena Football franchise was Jon Bon Jovi a majority owner of?

ANSWER

The Philadelphia Soul.

Sports on 08/06/2014

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