Tod Leiweke Steps Down As President Of Vulcan Sports To Become CEO And Part Owner Of Tampa Bay Lightning

Leiweke oversaw the Seattle Seahawks, Seattle Sounders and Portland Blazers.

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One fan's perspective on losing Leiweke

I do not get out to Qwest terribly much, but Mike Sando passes along a season ticket holder’s thoughts about losing Leiweke:

When Leiweke came aboard, everything changed. I remember seeing him coming up the aisle of our section early with a crew with sound detectors. Next game, the sound was down and we could actually hear ourselves cheer. The 12th Man flag went up and I got to shake hands with Chuck Knox and Steve Largent when they raised the flag. It was an entirely different stadium experience, night and day.

His effect on the fans cannot be overstated.

The fan experience is easy to overlook, but the Sounders, Seahawks and Blazers have all thrived as entertainment medium under Leiweke. The Sounders are hands down the most popular team in MLS. Seahawks games are always sold out, and Qwest is renowned for its stadium experience. Though Portland has forever loved its one major sports team, the Blazers, Leiweke oversaw a period in which the Blazers went from “Jail Blazers” to respected and integral part of the community.


Lightning Chairman and Governor, Jeff Vinik, Welcomes Leiweke

Vinik said in a statement.

“I am thrilled to welcome Tod to the Lightning organization as CEO and as my partner. Tod has the vision, the passion and the experience to lead the franchise towards my goal of being world class on and off the ice. He is an inspirational leader and I am delighted he has shown the confidence in the entire Tampa Bay community to join the Lightning.”

Leiweke is a respected executive and Paul Allen will struggle to replace him with someone as capable, but change is often good for a struggling organization. It forcefully frees that organization of inborn bias. The new person is free of personal relationships and prior commitments. Their only mandate is change, and though change is not in of itself progress, within a stagnant organization, change can catalyze future progress.

Now, will that future progress be the culmination of the next President’s vision, or a response to the next President’s failure?


Tod Leiweke Steps Down As Vulcan Sports CEO To Become CEO And Part Owner Of Tampa Bay Lightning

Self-described hockey man, Tod Leiweke, is reportedly leaving the Seahawks and Sounders parent company, Vulcan Sports, to take a position as CEO and part owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Leiweke himself has not commented on the decision, nor has Paul Allen or Vulcan Sports. More information as it's reported.


Leiweke will remain until replacement is found.

Greg Johns reports:

[Leiweke] will remain with the Seahawks until his replacement is found and help with the search process.

Though Leiweke has previously denied interest in taking a position with the Lightning, a long-rumored move, the chance to have an ownership stake in the club may have changed his mind. This is another example supporting the truism that a denial is only further evidence to the contrary. Pete Carroll, famously, regularly denied interest in rejoining the NFL before signing with the Seahawks. Mike Holmgren denied interest in un-retiring during his final year with the Seahawks, but murmurs suggested otherwise. He is now the general manager of the Cleveland Browns. In short, a denial does not mean “no,” but “no, given the current conditions.”

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