Robert Greis

Robert Gries

Bob Griess was an original investor in the Cleveland franchise in 1946. He stayed behind the scenes as Mickey McBride and Paul Brown operated and ran the team. Gries endured 3 different majority leaders in his 50 year ownership. Hardly anyone ever heard from Gries until he brought 3 different lawsuits against Modell in the 70's and 80's. The main theme to all 3 of the lawsuits was Modell's Stadium management company, called Stadiumcorp.

Modell wanted to sell Stadiumcorp to the Browns, so he could cut his management costs and bring the earning power of the Browns into the Stadium, paving the way for upgrades and rennovations which Modell was reponsible for. Gries seemed to believe that Stadiumcorp's selling price was too high, even though it was appraised at twice as much as Modell was going to buy it for. Another reason for Gries' objection is that he didn't want to be responsible for a "risky" buy with his own money (as Modell owned ALL of Stadiumcorp). Gries won all 3 lawsuits, and the management company stayed separate from the Browns.
This may have spelled doom for them ultimately, however. These lawsuits have also been attributed to Modell's degrading health according to Browns insiders. Once the Browns announced their move to Baltimore, Gries sold his stock in them (to Modell) in protest.

 

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