Let's suppose YOU owned the Lions.....

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David
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Sat Feb 21, 2015 9:40 pm

I don't have any details on this so take it for what it's worth, but TSN 1040's Matt Sekeres once said there was friction or bad blood between Braley and Scott Ackles. Something about Braley being snubbed at the 2009 Grey Cup in Calgary when Ackles was President of the Stamps? So I am guessing that's the principle reason why Scott has never been retained in an Executive capacity for the Lions (other than GM of the Grey Cup Committee 2011) - even though it would make total sense.

A press release for the 2011 Grey Cup would (appear) to refute this, although platitudes are often liberally dished out - often written by PR people - in media releases:
“Moray (Keith) and Dennis (Skulsky) have made an excellent acquisition in Scott Ackles,” said David Braley owner of the BC Lions Football Club. “It is great to have the Grey Cup coming back to Vancouver in 2011 and with an all-star festival team running the show it’s sure to eclipse the huge success we saw in 2005.”

DH :cool:
Please sell the team, Mr. Braley.

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sj-roc
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Sat Feb 21, 2015 9:59 pm

David wrote:I don't have any details on this so take it for what it's worth, but TSN 1040's Matt Sekeres once said there was friction or bad blood between Braley and Scott Ackles. Something about Braley being snubbed at the 2009 Grey Cup in Calgary when Ackles was President of the Stamps? So I am guessing that's the principle reason why Scott has never been retained in an Executive capacity for the Lions (other than GM of the Grey Cup Committee 2011) - even though it would make total sense.

A press release for the 2011 Grey Cup would (appear) to refute this, although platitudes are often liberally dished out - often written by PR people - in media releases:
“Moray (Keith) and Dennis (Skulsky) have made an excellent acquisition in Scott Ackles,” said David Braley owner of the BC Lions Football Club. “It is great to have the Grey Cup coming back to Vancouver in 2011 and with an all-star festival team running the show it’s sure to eclipse the huge success we saw in 2005.”

DH :cool:
This is the first I'm hearing of this supposed acrimony (when did MS first mention this?), but from where I sit it's certainly plausible, whatever its origin. There were plenty of whispers about DB not only not getting along with past league commissioners, but also his role in forcing their ousters, so when it comes to running his own ball club I could easily see him cracking an even harder whip as far as interpersonal conflicts go.

DB's 75th birthday — his long-acknowledged, self-imposed deadline for divesting himself of both of his CFL teams — comes next year, so accordingly we should see new ownership before the start of the 2017 season. If SA just happens to return soon thereafter with a new regime, it might lend further credence to the above hypothesis.
Sports can be a peculiar thing. When partaking in fiction, like a book or movie, we adopt a "Willing Suspension of Disbelief" for enjoyment's sake. There's a similar force at work in sports: "Willing Suspension of Rationality". If you doubt this, listen to any conversation between rival team fans. You even see it among fans of the same team. Fans argue over who's the better QB or goalie, and selectively cite stats that support their views while ignoring those that don't.

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Ravi
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Tue Mar 03, 2015 1:24 pm

Season ticket renewals are going slowly so hopefully some of the ideas on this thread will soon be implemented. According to CKWX, only 65% of season tickets have so far been renewed for the upcoming season.

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SammyGreene
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Wed Mar 04, 2015 7:09 am

Ravi wrote:Season ticket renewals are going slowly so hopefully some of the ideas on this thread will soon be implemented. According to CKWX, only 65% of season tickets have so far been renewed for the upcoming season.
We were discussing this in the now MIA marketing thread but these numbers are sadly not too surprising given the product on the field last season and the some huge questions going forward, namely at the QB position.

Having followed this team since the mid-70s, I have come to the conclusion the Lions, and the league for that matter, can't maintain momentum for a long period of time. Under Bob Ackles and Wally, the franchise enjoyed a great resurgence from 2004-2008. Attendance dipped significantly the following season which no coincidence was a year after Ackles' sudden passing.

The move in and out of BC Place didn't help either, or the higher ticket prices upon their return — resulting in zero impact on attendance despite impressive stadium renovations. Still, the Lions had a business plan that averaging in the high 20s still meant profits and the team was very competitive on the field. But very eratic 3rd and 4th place finishes that included some putrid home games, combined with every game now televised, has many fence sitters pulling back their commitment.

Can't see many of the uncommitted 35 percent suddenly jumping on board and I'm bracing myself for a significant dip in attendance until a consistent entertaining product is back on the field. Right now I would just be happy with a radio deal somewhere.

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Toppy Vann
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Wed Mar 04, 2015 8:21 pm

sj-roc wrote:
TheLionKing wrote:
SammyGreene wrote:And the other thing I would do is pay Scott Ackles whatever it would take to leave his current job and step in as club president. He was even missed chairing the Grey Cup committee this past year. Nothing against Dennis Skulsky as I do believe he has a passion for the Lions but the Ackles name and Scott's previous experience is an absolute must for this franchise moving forward.
X2
I wonder whether Scott Ackles simply no longer has any interest in working for the Lions or anywhere in the CFL on account of the fact that it would invite constant comparisons to his late father whereas he might prefer to make his own mark on the world and if that means staying out of football then so be it. He might return to a CFL job someday but maybe for now he feels like he has something to prove and wants to succeed on his own terms. Several years from now he'd be hired based as much on his accomplishments outside of the football over a stretch of what would be about a decade or more, as on his name and what he did with the Stamps and the GC committees in his last go-round.
For the life of me I never understood his quitting as President in Calgary. Didn't sound like he was pushed at all. Made no sense as there are just few jobs in sport and CFL - why give up a good one ... not a good strategic career decision - BUT I really don't know any more than what I think I read at the time.

However, he's doing fine I guess:

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TheLionKing
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Wed Mar 04, 2015 10:08 pm

I understand Ackles chose to leave the Stamps to be closer to his family following the passing of his dad and to head the Grey Cup Committee.

BakeTEAM1040
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Sat Mar 07, 2015 10:59 am

[quote="Robbie"]A good way to start would be to learn any lessons from the mistakes that the previous owners made and think of a way to resolve those issues so that there won't be a repetition. Repeating a post earlier about how all four previous private owners were mentioned in an article about the top 25 BC Lions personalities and finding out their mistakes.....

[
Owner #3 - NELSON SKALBANIA :puke:
The flamboyant real estate flipper from Vancouver (seen on the left) is best-known for signing 17-year-old Wayne Gretzky when he was owner of the Indianapolis Racers of the World Hockey Association. Over a span of 10 years, in the 1970s, Skalbania owned hotels, shopping centres, apartment buildings and sports teams, including the Edmonton Oilers, Montreal Alouettes, Vancouver Canadians, Memphis Rogues and Calgary Boomers. He was instrumental in the move of the Atlanta Flames to Calgary. His final foray into sports ownership came with the Lions in 1996, but Skalbania developed a case of the shorts and was forced to hand over control to a receiver after only six months.
Image

Too many bad things can be said about him so I can simply summarize everything by saying.....Image

I was only a kid at the time, but didn't Skalbania want to change the name of the team to Vancouver Red Dogs ( after the beer) or the Vancouver Mirage?

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Rammer
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Sat Mar 07, 2015 12:22 pm

BakeTEAM1040 wrote:
Robbie wrote:A good way to start would be to learn any lessons from the mistakes that the previous owners made and think of a way to resolve those issues so that there won't be a repetition. Repeating a post earlier about how all four previous private owners were mentioned in an article about the top 25 BC Lions personalities and finding out their mistakes.....

[
Owner #3 - NELSON SKALBANIA :puke:
The flamboyant real estate flipper from Vancouver (seen on the left) is best-known for signing 17-year-old Wayne Gretzky when he was owner of the Indianapolis Racers of the World Hockey Association. Over a span of 10 years, in the 1970s, Skalbania owned hotels, shopping centres, apartment buildings and sports teams, including the Edmonton Oilers, Montreal Alouettes, Vancouver Canadians, Memphis Rogues and Calgary Boomers. He was instrumental in the move of the Atlanta Flames to Calgary. His final foray into sports ownership came with the Lions in 1996, but Skalbania developed a case of the shorts and was forced to hand over control to a receiver after only six months.
Image

Too many bad things can be said about him so I can simply summarize everything by saying.....Image

I was only a kid at the time, but didn't Skalbania want to change the name of the team to Vancouver Red Dogs ( after the beer) or the Vancouver Mirage?
Skalbania, Pezim, Ryckman, all owners of CFL teams, but wouldn't be able to flip them as easily as they had stocks or real estate. That is the type of ownership the CFL had in the past, but need to learn to avoid these types of owners in order to keep the league stable. But I still chalk up the worst ownership in Vancouver to Michael Heisley, owner of the Grizzlies, he was crooked to the bone and another owner who liked to buy low and sell high.
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sj-roc
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Sat Mar 07, 2015 12:37 pm

BakeTEAM1040 wrote:I was only a kid at the time, but didn't Skalbania want to change the name of the team to Vancouver Red Dogs ( after the beer) or the Vancouver Mirage?
Not sure about the Mirage part but the Red Dogs thing (yes, after the beer) is def true — or at least it was reported in the media at the time, in that sorry summer of 1996. Back in those times you could leave a bagful of Lions tickets on any given downtown sidewalk, then come back the next day to see all the tickets still there, only someone made off with the bag. "Crowds" in the 15k's and less (announced, perhaps even lower excluding no-shows) were not unusual in that era.
Sports can be a peculiar thing. When partaking in fiction, like a book or movie, we adopt a "Willing Suspension of Disbelief" for enjoyment's sake. There's a similar force at work in sports: "Willing Suspension of Rationality". If you doubt this, listen to any conversation between rival team fans. You even see it among fans of the same team. Fans argue over who's the better QB or goalie, and selectively cite stats that support their views while ignoring those that don't.

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Sat Mar 07, 2015 4:31 pm

TheLionKing wrote:I understand Ackles chose to leave the Stamps to be closer to his family following the passing of his dad and to head the Grey Cup Committee.
That was indeed the case. Heading the 2011 GC I think was just the purrfect interim thing to allow him to be closer to the family while at the same time deciding just what direction he wanted to go with his career. I have a sense that as much as he enjoyed being involved with pro sports it wasn't really something he saw as a lifelong calling.
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David
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Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:04 am

^^Bump^^

This is an old thread, but with new owners likely before the end of the season, it's fun to re-visit what you would do if you owned the BC Lions.

I think I might look to reconfigure the seating at BC Place. Not that I want 2,000-3,000 rattling around the upper bowl again and the rest of it looking like a vast wasteland, but I don't think the lower bowl w/sails is working very well as not enough people like sitting in the endzones. Whether people just don't see a value proposition in the end-zones, I'm not sure. But clearly, the club lost some folks when everyone was forced down to the lower bowl (only). Perhaps a horseshoe configuration with tarping would work best.

Keep the end-zone seating where the players enter/exit.


DH :cool:
Please sell the team, Mr. Braley.

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Hambone
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Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:31 am

David wrote:
Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:04 am
^^Bump^^

This is an old thread, but with new owners likely before the end of the season, it's fun to re-visit what you would do if you owned the BC Lions.

I think I might look to reconfigure the seating at BC Place. Not that I want 2,000-3,000 rattling around the upper bowl again and the rest of it looking like a vast wasteland, but I don't think the lower bowl w/sails is working very well as not enough people like sitting in the endzones. Whether people just don't see a value proposition in the end-zones, I'm not sure. But clearly, the club lost some folks when everyone was forced down to the lower bowl (only). Perhaps a horseshoe configuration with tarping would work best.

Keep the end-zone seating where the players enter/exit.


DH :cool:
From looking back at old info I think the Lions have tried just about every configuration including horseshoe and at one point having upper and lower bowls open with only seats between the goal lines being available. Pavco is responsible for kyboshing the upper bowl seats in what had likely turned into money losing proposition for them if there are only 2000-3000 fans up there. Their main source of revenue for the upper bowl would be concession profits. They still have to provide staff for concessions and security and of course staff to clean up the stands, concourses and washrooms after the game. My buddy and were trying to get our STs to the aisle the season they closed the upper bowl. Understandably those upper deck ST holders got first dibs on available lower bowl seats leaving us with nothing that fit what we were looking for. I asked my account rep about the number of upper deck ST holders they had to relocate. He told me approximately 150. I'm thinking if the Lions could guarantee 2000-3000 ST holders upstairs they'd have the base needed for Pavco to reconsider opening it up. Tack on the casual buyers and they can probably hit Pavco's break even point.
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Sir Purrcival
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Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:43 pm

As I think about this issue, there are things that I would change but realistically couldn't like the location of the venue. For a start, I would explore ways to make going to the game easy. If that means charter busses from farther communities that take you right to the game and drop you off and pickup after, then maybe that is what I would start with.

I would try reaching out to various chambers of commerce around the lower mainland and look for ways to entice greater community participation. Maybe a Port Moody night, a Maple Ridge night, etc. Maybe dedicate some choice seats in an upper section for holders of a special commemorative ticket. Let local businesses give out some of those tickets to their customers. Help them reward good customers, give them out to families, what have you. Make each home game an event for some group or region.
Invest in some better half time product. This is Vancouver. Local talent abounds here. I saw they had a rock band in Ottawa last night. Seems far more entertaining than mascot soccer. Or have a real contest, local edition of the Voice or something that people can get excited about.

Some of the crap they do now is just boring and seems really fixed like the "what would I do if I wasn't a football player?" contest.

Pick some random groups in the crowd, give them a free beer or hot dog or credit to be used in game. Those are small but meaningful things.

Maybe we need to start enticing fans from other teams to come to Vancouver for the weekend, cheer for your team, spend some money in our fair town. Maybe try to work some kind of deal with hotels and airlines to make that more enticing.


Some of this is probably already being done but people need to feel like they are part of the experience, not just passive observers. Otherwise they can juts stay home and watch there which really seems to be part the problem.

These are just off the cuff and haven't had much fleshing out. But I would start there.
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