The owner of the Miami Dolphins football team, Stephen Ross, is suspended until October 17 for violating the "integrity of the game," the NFL published on Tuesday. The league fined him $1.5 million but with a net worth like his, it won't even make a dent.
According to Forbes, Ross is worth $8.2 billion, and his riches span a wide variety of business interests. He has dabbled in developing real estate as well as philanthropy en route to amassing his mind-boggling financial muscle.
After plying his trade as a tax attorney, Ross founded the global firm, The Related Companies, in 1972.
The well-known company, which started off as an affordable housing developer, has created New York's Time Warner Center and Hudson Yards. The latter opened in March 2019 following a decade of planning and construction.
Related has developed and/or acquired $60 billion in real estate assets, from California to Abu Dhabi to Shanghai.
Besides the ownership of the Miami Dolphins NFL team, Ross also has stakes in Equinox Fitness, SoulCycle and numerous fast casual restaurant chains.
The multibillionaire, whose image took more of a hit than his monetary value after the recent turn of events, released a statement denying the allegations.
"These allegations were false, malicious and defamatory, and the issue is now put to rest," the Miami Dolphins posted their owner's words on Twitter.
The NFL conducted a six-month investigation to check for the violation of its anti-tampering policy, which prevents any interference by a member club with the employer-employee relationship of another.
It was found that Ross and the company's vice chairman/limited partner Bruce Beal breached the policy on three different occasions between 2019 and 2022.
The player discussed was Tom Brady while he was with both New England Patriots and Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The coach contacted was New Orleans Saints' Sean Payton.
The league also looked at the possibility of Ross offering financial incentives to encourage the Dolphins to lose games to improve their draft positions.
The NFL's findings revealed that Ross "expressed his belief that the Dolphins' position in the upcoming 2020 draft should take priority over the team's win-loss record".
Besides the suspension and fine, Ross' Miami Dolphins will also have to forfeit first-round picks in the 2023 Draft and third-round picks in the 2024 Draft.