Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Reaction To Richards Hire

We received this letter from a fan named Stephani who gave us permission to post it in this space.  She also sent it to GM Scott Howson and PR Director Todd Sharrock:

On December 26, 2006, I fell in love with hockey. I went to my first game with my family and we defeated Boston in overtime. After that game, I became a loyal fan, started skating and now play recreational hockey in the Chiller leagues. I have loved the CBJ unconditionally as I have grown as a player and fan. I participated in the Nashville trip in November and had a blast representing our fans, still hopeful for a comeback and future. But now I feel like I'm becoming a fan looking for a new team which is a really hard thing to say in my six short years.

I am sure Richards is a great and nice man, but is there honestly no one on the market to become our head coach? Or is it that no one is willing to join a franchise with such a poor reputation? This announcement makes me really sad even after the worst season is finally over. We have some amazing former players (and coach) that are on teams in the playoffs which make me so happy for them, but so sad that we couldn't do anything when they were here. And we're about to lose another who will likely go on to another team, prosper and win a Cup as he was meant to do. The players remaining are wonderful as well and deserve so much more than the cards they are being dealt.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know where the culture of this team begins and since nothing has changed, I guess my excitement for the franchise will just continue to deteriorate. I have unsubscribed from your CBJ Newsletter because I cannot take anymore announcements that show no signs of progress for my team. 


Stephani - A really bummed fan.

P.S. On January 28, 2013 the All-Star game will be but a distant memory (with the exception of all the revenue businesses will be smiling about), but if nothing changes for our team, our city will go back to being a joke in the NHL and no one will care how great of a visit they may have had in our awesome hockey town. I hope you remember that as you continue to drive focus on something that really doesn't matter in the grand scheme of problems that this franchise faces...especially if we do not even have an All-Star to send to the game.

Thanks for sharing Stephani.

For A New Start (F.A.N.S.)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Open Letter to John P. McConnell - May 9, 2012

th letter to you. As promised, we received
Today the following letter was delivered to John P. McConnell along with your signed petitions. 

Our final tally was 1,002 signatures in only 9 games.  Thank you to all of you who made this possible!  We will keep the pressure on ownership and management to deliver the team that this devoted fan base deserves!  Expect additional updates over the summer on how you can stay involved.

Dear Mr. McConnell:

This letter is a follow up to our previous February 29 signatures on a petition from our fellow fans demanding the removal of Mike Priest as President and Scott Howson as General Manager of the Columbus Blue Jackets. Over the course of just 9 home games, we were able to obtain 1,002 signatures with a minimal number of volunteers and almost no press coverage. We received numerous e-mails of support from other fans who liveoutside of Columbus and were not able to attend one of those games. More than 200 fans
entered Nationwide Arena for the season finale with signs demanding the removal of Mr. Priest and Mr. Howson.

In short, the fans of the Columbus Blue Jackets have spoken. The signatures on this petition are but a small sample of the angst within the fan base—angst which is justified based on the fact that with no less than four different coaches the team has now finished dead last in the Central Division three consecutive seasons, something the Jackets had not done since the first 3 seasons. The decisions facing the team this summer will likely determine its success or failure not just for next season, but for seasons to come. The current management team has not established a track record that suggests they should be entrusted with such decisions, especially matters regarding coaching. If any reminder is needed on that point, one need look no further than Kevin Dineen, the former Blue Jacket who was passed over for Scott Arniel the last time the team needed a new coach, who now has more playoff wins in one season than Mr. Howson or Mr. Priest have in their entire tenure with the team.

We hope that you will fully consider this matter and act expeditiously to install a management team befitting of your devoted, if frustrated, fan base. We fear that a failure to act at this point will have a detrimental effect not just on the team’s future on-ice performance, but on attendance and general interest in the team amongst that fan base.

Should the status quo be maintained, we will continue to monitor the situation and act accordingly.

We have attached copies of the signed petitions with contact information redacted. Copies of this letter and those petitions will be shared with members of the press.

Very truly yours,

For A New Start