Kraken adds Marshawn Lynch and Macklemore as minority owners

SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle Kraken expansion adds extra power to its ownership group.

The Kraken announced Monday that Grammy winner Macklemore and former NFL running back Marshawn Lynch are joining the group of minority investors.

Both take small stakes in the franchise, but bring big ideas about community engagement and awareness to go along with their financial commitment. One of the original members of the Seattle Owners Group was Hollywood filmmaker Jerry Bruckheimer.

“I would say maybe we didn’t need two more investors. But these are investors who are uniquely interested in helping us in the community and are excited about what we’re doing,” Kraken CEO Tod Leiweke told The Associated Press.

The franchise is in the final weeks of its inaugural season after paying a $650 million expansion fee to join the NHL.

Macklemore, real name Ben Haggerty, said part of his efforts will focus on the music community and creating partnerships between the team and young musicians to take advantage of the smaller spaces of the Climate Pledge Arena for performance on game nights.

He also intends to partner with a charity golf tournament involving the team and his Bogey Boys golf brand.

“I think bringing music to Climate Pledge is most important and helping to facilitate collaboration with local artists. There are so many little micro venues in areas that people can perform at Climate Pledge outside of Climate Pledge like an arena itself,” Macklemore said. “I think the Kraken have been really open and enthusiastic about bringing in local talent. So I think that’s one way. I think the other way is just to make sure we expose everything the world at play.”

Macklemore has also been part owner of the MLS Seattle Sounders since 2019. The Sounders won the MLS Cup title in the first season of his investment.

“I think that’s something that I feel super blessed and privileged to be a part of, and that transfers over to wanting to be part of the Kraken,” he said.

Lynch was a member of the Seattle Seahawks from 2010 to 2015 and 2019 and was part of the first team in franchise history to win the Super Bowl. He is a beloved figure among local sports fans and last year ventured into sports ownership with an investment in Oakland Roots SC, which plays in the USL Championship, football’s second tier male in the United States.

“I’ve been part of a lot of things, but it’s something I never imagined. As a young hyena, I always dreamed of playing on a professional team, but owning one is something special,” Lynch said in a statement. “Looking back on some of my accomplishments – I retired before I was 30 and am now a professional club owner at the age of 35 – I will continue to count my blessings. Being part of the Seattle Kraken is something big for me and it gives me another chance to get a ring after helping bring the first one to town.


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