Is This The New President Of The Toronto Blue Jays?

The media business is a funny business. I am speculating of course with the aid of some tips. One of the reasons J.P. has fallen out of grace with many in the Toronto media is that J.P. allegedly plays favorites. For example, he apparently leaks all sorts of stuff to the good folks at ESPN and Foxsports news and leaves the Toronto scribes out in the cold. That, is the word on the street anyway. J.P. hasn’t picked one Toronto scribe over the other, he has gone south of the border. The scribes as I understand would prefer he picked a local source then one not based here. Where it gets interesting is that the National Post is the only media outlet in town that breaks the name of the potential heir apparent to Mr. Beeston. The same person I was told about 10 days ago was a done deal, Rick Welts, the current President and CEO of the Phoenix Suns is now being officially rumored to be the next President of the Blue Jays.

“According to multiple sources, the Phoenix Suns president is being considered to take over the Blue Jays from interim president and CEO Paul Beeston, who is leading the search for his permanent replacement.

“I think a person like Rick Welts would be the perfect person,” said Beeston, who would neither confirm nor deny Welts’ candidacy. “But that’s all I can say about it.”

That is from the National Post. Not the Sun, not the Star and Not the Globe and Mail. Why is this interesting? It’s not a knock on the Post or the other papers. It is noteworthy for a couple of reasons. One, the former president of the Jays now runs the Post. Second the former GM of the Suns now runs the Raptors. The Raptors are owned by MLSE. MLSE has been rumored to be one of a few who could buy the Jays from Rogers.

“Anybody would be honoured to be considered a candidate,” Welts said when reached by telephone yesterday. “I’ve known Mr. Beeston a long time and he’s a great friend and we talk on occasion. But as far as I’m concerned, I have the best job in the world right now running the Phoenix Suns and I expect I’ll be doing that for a long time.

“I’ve got great respect for [Beeston] and the organization. Beyond that, there’s really nothing going on.”

Uh huh. Let’s just see how this plays out. Where there is smoke there is fire.

“He stayed in that job for six month, then moved to a sports consulting business until 2002 when then-Suns general manager Bryan Colangelo hired him to run the business side of the team. According to a story in a Seattle newspaper last year, Welts’ arrival in Phoenix coincided with a tripling of ticket revenue and the doubling of team sponsorship. “I do consider him one of my greatest hires,” Colangelo, now the GM of the Toronto Raptors, said yesterday. “He’s definitely a people person as it relates to managing staff and customers alike.”

This sounds like the type of guy Rogers or MLSE would be looking for. It would be a home run…

“He’s about as complete a sports executive that exists,” Stern said in the Seattle story last year. “His contributions have been so complete to the NBA you could not do him justice to isolate one thing.” Rogers Communications is looking for an executive who can help improve the bottom line for the money-losing team and increase revenues from the Rogers Centre, bought for $25-million in 2004. The company has spent at least $50-million on stadium upgrades in subsequent years.”

Stay tuned sports fans. Lots of moving parts….

read the post article here

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