Baltimore Orioles owner Peter Angelos said Tuesday that he has not ruled out trying to buy the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and moving the team to Baltimore.
Angelos told the Times last month that he had a representative contact the Buccaneers to ask whether they were for sale. Stories in the past few weeks have speculated that the negotiations had continued, but the Bucs have issued repeated denials and say the club is not on the market.
But Angelos, who last year bought the Orioles for a record $173-million, said he is serious about getting an NFL team to play in a stadium to be built near Camden Yards.
"We intend not to be denied and we will continue our efforts," Angelos said Tuesday night at the baseball owners spring meeting.
"As far as I'm concerned, whichever ownership interest that we can successfully negotiate a purchase with, we intend to do so. If you say, does that include the Bucs, it includes everyone."
Angelos would say little specifically about possible talks with the Bucs and declined several opportunities to dismiss the possibility of buying the team from Hugh Culverhouse.
Asked whether he did make a $200-million offer for the Bucs, as was reported recently, Angelos said: "I can't comment on that."
Asked to describe where talks with the Bucs stood, Angelos said: "I can't answer that. I can't say there are any talks. We're telling all groups that own NFL franchises that if they are interested in selling such franchises, we are interested."
Asked whether he considered the Bucs to be for sale, Angelos said: "I can't say they're on the market but I will do whatever is necessary to encourage those who own that club to put that club on the market. That goes for all clubs. Whatever I can do to encourage or instigate a given franchise owner to consider selling the franchise to my group for the purpose of relocating to Baltimore, I intend to do that."
Asked whether that meant offering a huge sum for a team, Angelos said: "Whatever the price is that must be paid within certain reasonable parameters, we're prepared to make that kind of offer.
"We're interested in getting an NFL team and we're exploring every possible opportunity to do that."
Angelos will be in St. Petersburg this month to watch his team in spring training.