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Dolphins sold and Parcells is staying -- for now

The Dolphins are expected to announce the completion of their sale from current owner Wayne Huizenga to new owner Stephen Ross later this afternoon.

That is a potential paradigm shift for the franchise Huizenga has steered since 1994. And that matters to you only if you are a ticket-buyer or if you're concerned about what the ownership change might mean to the future of football czar Bill Parcells.

Parcells, reached in Mobile, Ala. where he is scouting players in advance of the Senior Bowl, was not aware the sale had gone through Tuesday afternoon. "I didn't know that," he said."Good. That's good."

And that is where the conversation pretty much ended.

Parcells declined to discuss his future with the Dolphins and declined to discuss the specifics of a clause in his contract that allows him to walk away from the Dolphins and be paid his entire salary if the team changes ownership.

So that was a dead end.

But on this day of change for the Dolphins, other sources within the organization have been willing to give a glance into what Parcells is likely to do.

And they say he is going  to stay ...

... unless he gets a reason not to stay.

One source close to Parcells says the man charged and credited with turning the Dolphins around has a "a developing relationship" with new owner Ross. And that relationship needs to develop more.

While Parcells is acting like, and saying he is staying with the Dolphins, he wants to be certain that new ownership understands him. More importantly, he wants to make sure new ownership understands the NFL business is not like the commercial real estate development business in which Ross made his fortune.

Things happen overnight in the NFL. Unexpectedly. And Parcells wants to have the freedom and wherewithal to react to keep the Dolphins competitive. One example I was given was the acquisition of quarterback Chad Pennington late last preseason.

To make the move, the Dolphins had to come up with an unbudgetted $4 million to pay Pennington a bonus. Huizenga approved the check with little delay. Parcells wants to make certain Ross would understand the need to move quickly in such instances and be able to tap resources in a similar manner.

He is not completely certain of that yet.

Parcells, I am told, wants to stay with the Dolphins and, indeed, is planning to do just that. That is one reason he is in Mobile to begin with.

But there is a small loophole that cannot be ignored.

So Parcells is staying 100 percent ... unless something changes. And then that percentage goes out the window.

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