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SBD/January 4, 2011/Franchises
Published January 4, 2011
CBSSPORTS.com's Ray Ratto wrote Pro Football HOFer John Elway by taking a job as Broncos VP/Football Operations is "making the mistake of competing against himself at something he is not as good at as his previous job with the Broncos." Elway is "being asked to return the team to the glories it knew under him, and this is an arrangement that almost never works." His name "never came up as a potential savior for any other team," and fans "find it easier to despise even a playing hero once he goes to Suitsville." Ratto: "History suggests ... that this 'conquering hero returning to save the day again' thing always is a lot harder than it looks" (CBSSPORTS.com, 1/3). SI.com's Don Banks wrote the Broncos' hiring of Elway "strikes me as pure public relations for a franchise that has lost its way" (SI.com, 1/3).
WHERE'S THE GOLD RUSH? In S.F., Al Saracevic noted the 49ers have a 102-121 record since the York family assumed control of the franchise in '97. In that time, the Yorks "have fired four coaches," including Mike Singletary last month, and have "failed to realize multiple stadium plans." Saracevic: "They've strung together eight seasons without a playoff appearance. And they presently don't have a head coach or a general manager or a viable stadium plan. ... The Yorks need to find the next Bill Walsh. They need to build a shiny stadium in San Francisco. And they need to negotiate some very tricky waters this offseason in terms of labor negotiations" (S.F. CHRONICLE, 1/2).
CAST ASIDE: In N.Y., Peter Vecsey examines how NBA teams treat longtime employees, writing under the header, "NBA Turns Back On Some Of Its Own." Late Pistons Dir of PR Matt Dobek and former Celtics assistant coach Clifford Ray both were fired by their respective teams last year, while Basketball HOFer Connie Hawkins, who "had been doing community work for the Suns and showed up at the office on an irregular basis," was "taken off the Suns' books." Also, Basketball HOFer and former Wizards GM Wes Unseld "was stripped of his season tickets" by the team. Vecsey: "You'd think Wizards owner Ted Leonsis would want as many hostages as he could to take to fill the Verizon Center's crater of empty seats" (N.Y. POST, 1/4).
JETS NAMED IN LAWSUIT: YAHOO SPORTS' Chris Chase noted the Jets were "named in the suit" brought forth by two former team employees against QB Brett Favre "for sexual harassment." The suit alleges the Jets cultivated a "hotbed of sexual harassment, sexism and inappropriate behavior." The women "are seeking unspecified damages" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 1/3). A Jets spokesperson declined to comment, citing a "pending legal matter" (WALL STREET JOURNAL, 1/4).