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Magic Johnson says ‘everything is on the table,’ including potential Commanders name change

The Washington Commanders have a new ownership group, and after this upcoming season, they may have a new identity. 

NBA legend Magic Johnson, who along with the Josh Harris led group, purchased the team from former embattled owner Dan Snyder for a record $6.05 billion in a deal that NFL owners unanimously voted to approve on Thursday. 

“It’s the biggest thing I’ve ever done in my life. It’s a lifelong dream,” Johnson said in an interview with the TODAY Show that aired Friday morning.


“I think it’s going to be great. It’s going to be great for the Commanders fans, it’s going to be great for the players as well, and for all the employees as well.”

Johnson said the new ownership group will “keep busy” with work needed to turn the organization around, but when asked if potentially changing the name was on the agenda, the Hall of Famer did not rule it out. 

“I think everything is on the table, especially after this year. We’ll see where we are with the name, but I can’t say that right now.”

“We’re going to spend this year understanding what we have in place, and then I’m sure [talk of a new facility] will come up, the name of the team will come up eventually, but right now we’ve got enough work to do and that will keep us busy.”

The Commanders retired their former name in July 2020 after years of complaints that it was insensitive to Native Americans. Eighteen months later, Washington’s new identity was revealed. 

However, the new name was not received well by some fans, some even advocated to keep their placeholder name permanently – the Washington Football Team. 

Seats at Fedex Field

Their biggest immediate challenge for the long-term future of the organization is a new stadium to replace FedEx Field, the rushed-to-completion home of the team since 1997 in Landover, Maryland, that has not aged well.

Virginia abandoned a stadium bill more than a year ago, but the site of RFK Stadium, the club’s previous home in the capitol city, has significant backing as the place for the new venue.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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