FanPost

An Example of Leadership



I truly believe that the Cubs most recent failures are partly the result of a new ownership that did not have to create or bring back a fan base through a new top down philosophy. At this point we do not know what measures ownership is going to take for a turn around and it seems to me that ownership is simply rolling the dice, relying on the goodwill of a loyal fan base that as of right now is being completely left in the dark regarding the future of this organization.


I would like to use the Blackhawks for a moment to show how fast things can turn around with a lot of hard work. Back in October of 2007 the Wirtz family foolishly decided to have a pre-game memorial for their father and reviled Hawks owner Bill Wirtz. I don't know what the family was expecting to happen but the freshly interred Wirtz was booed unmercifully. One can argue that it was a classless act on the part of Hawks fans or one could argue that the few thousand loyal fans that showed up for that game were just in showing what the Wirtz legacy had wrought upon the organization and the NHL as a whole.

In steps Rocky Wirtz, the reluctant leader, the man thrust into the position of Hawks Chairman who would immediately make his mark by going against the fundamental beliefs of the Wirtz Patriarch on how exactly to run an NHL franchise.Wirtz immediately signs a deal with Comcast Sports Net to televise Hawks home games, he started a media campaign in an attempt to bring interest to the beleaguered franchise and he mended relationships with past Hawk greats whose bridges were burned by the elder Wirtz . Most importantly Rocky was able to recognize his own weaknesses in the organization and started to bring in some of the best minds in sports business, John McDonough, Jay Blunk, later he brought in Scotty Bowman(maybe the best mind in hockey). Things changed from top to bottom, which ultimately led to the promised land in a rather short period of time. Mind you, the Hawks were bleeding money going into the 2007 season and management was concerned that they may not be able to make payroll.


I understand that Ricketts going into this was dealt a bad hand, overpaid player contracts and the like but he did have something that Rocky Wirtz didn't, Ricketts had the luxury(or what I call curse) of not having to contend for the hearts and minds of the people to get them in the seats, they were already there, perhaps allowing Ricketts the ability to bide his time. Where Rocky's first order of business was having Bob Pulford step aside, the same should have been done with Jim Hendry. Unfortunately we are still waiting and wondering what Mr. Ricketts baseball philosophy is, what is his strategy as he vacations in some Lux Resort.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of SB Nation or Al Yellon, managing editor (unless it's a FanPost posted by Al). FanPost opinions are valued expressions of opinion by passionate and knowledgeable baseball fans.

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