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Carolina Panthers Owner Putting Team Up for Sale ... Amid NFL Investigation

12/17/2017 5:23 PM PST

Carolina Panthers Owner Jerry Richardson Selling Team Amid NFL Investigation (UPDATE)

Breaking News

7:05 PM PT -- Diddy is weighing in on the Panthers' sale ... and it sounds like he wants to throw his hat in the ring as the next owner. 

Well that was fast -- Carolina Panthers owner Jerry Richardson says he's putting the team up for sale at the end of the season ... the same day the NFL said it's investigating him.

Richardson released a statement Sunday saying he was planning to sell the Panthers franchise to new ownership, but wouldn't start the process 'til the very last game. 

As we reported ... the Panthers launched an investigation into their owner this week for alleged misconduct in the workplace, including reported cash settlements for at least 4 employees. 

According to Sports Illustrated, the misconduct centered around alleged sexual harassment and the use of a racial slur. The NFL also announced Sunday that it was taking over the Panthers' original probe ... which appears to have forced Richardson's hand.

Gotta say ... this reminds us a lot of when TMZ Sports revealed racist comments made by former Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling ... who sold the team after news of his scandal broke. 

As for Richardson, he and some investors paid the NFL a reported $206 million in 1993 to create the Panthers as an expansion team. It's probably worth a lot more than that now. 

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