Benson: wife to inherit control of Saints, Pelicans
NEW ORLEANS - Tom Benson, who owns the NFL's Saints and NBA's Pelicans, has agreed to a succession plan that will give his wife, Gayle, control of New Orleans' two major professional sports franchises after his death.
In a statement provided to The Associated Press on Wednesday night, the 87-year-old Benson says his decision is meant to ensure the clubs' "long-term stability and success," and to preserve their legacy of working for the good of New Orleans and the region.
The move is a departure from previous plans to bequeath a controlling interest in the clubs to Benson's daughter, Renee, and her children, Rita Benson LeBlanc and Ryan LeBlanc.
Benson has owned the Saints since 1985 and the Pelicans since 2012. He married Gayle Benson in 2004.