10 Worst team owners in Canadian Sports History

and sadly, half are ex-CFL owners...

[b]10. Michael Feterik - Team: Calgary Stampeders (CFL, 2001-2005)[/b]
  1. Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment - Team: Toronto Maple Leafs (NHL, 1996-present), Toronto Raptors (NBA, 1998-present), Toronto FC (MLS, 2007-present)

8. Horn Chen - Team: Ottawa Rough Riders (CFL, 1995-1996)

  1. Daryl Katz - Team: Edmonton Oilers (NHL, 2008-present)

6. Bruce McNall - Team: Toronto Argonauts (1991-1994)

5. Sherwood Schwarz - Team: Toronto Argonauts (CFL, 1999-2003)

  1. Peter Pocklington Team: Edmonton Oilers (NHL, 1976-1998)

3. Bernie Glieberman - Team: Ottawa Rough Riders (CFL: 1991-1994), Ottawa Renegades (CFL, 2005)

  1. Jeffrey Loria Team: Montreal Expos (1999-2002)

  2. Harold Ballard - Team: Toronto Maple Leafs (NHL, 1972-1990)

[url=http://news.nationalpost.com/2015/02/06/think-mlse-is-bad-a-look-at-10-of-the-worst-team-owners-in-canadian-sports-history/]http://news.nationalpost.com/2015/02/06 ... s-history/[/url]

Great list. Would add that liar Michael Heisley's name to that list.
Also, I would take issue with Bruce McNall being on the list.
Although things didn't turn out well in the end for him, he boosted the image of the league big time, all the players were paid on time and all who played for him spoke highly of him.

How the heck did Nelson Skalbania's name not enter this list. He ruined the Alouettes franchise, almost single handedly destroyed football in Vancouver. After his franchise was revoked, it was said the Lions had under 5,000 season ticket holders (possibly as low as 3,000)

But he did sign some big name NFL players, that was long before there was a salary cap. The big names failed to generate ticket sales. I was living in St Jean at the time and I remember going to the Big Owe and sitting in the cheap seats high up by ourselves in a 60,000 seat stadium with around 5,000 in the stands. The only time I saw it packed for a CFL game was the 86 Grey Cup - Ticats and BC
The Als went under then Les Concorde and they went under, the Als briefly again - bad days in the CFL during the 80s and 90s

(Glieberman) Postscript: There are still football fans in Ottawa, remarkably.
Yeah, no kidding. You can't help but wonder if you're cursed when you deal with two people on that list, over three occasions.

You're thinking the 85' Grey Cup. Skalbania was long gone by then. He tried to use the newly built Olympic Stadium as a way to get himself an NFL franchise that he hoped to flip to someone else. In the process he almost killed off football in Montreal and took a profitable franchise playing at that time the most extravagant stadium in the world (which should have made enough money to carry through some lean years later on) to one that was in financial trouble by the 78' season. He tried the exact same thing in Vancouver and almost killed CFL football in the market

Not to mention the fine job he did of running the Alouettes into the ground in the early 80's :roll: . Signed the likes of Ferragamo,Scott,White Shoes,Cousineau,Overstreet etc etc... the Best team that money could buy and finished up a sparkling 3-13 in "81" only to end up filing for bankruptcy in "82" folding the team and thus killing the Alouette brand and the league seeing the birth of the ill-fated Concordes franchise which also ended up folding and essentially killing football in Montreal after the "86" season for almost an entire decade. I agree EVM no way that Skalbania doesn't make this list.

National Post: Publisher Paul Godfrey (who claimed last week that Rogers gave away "most" of the tickets to the Bills in Toronto series.)

Also, can definitely appreciate Jeffrey Loria's name being on the list but what about Claude Brochu? (and the rest of the Expos ownership consortium before they sold out to Loria). His constant penny pinching ways led to the slow decline of the Expos and his short-sighted, foolish move to dismantle the 94' Expos will go down as one of the worst blunders in Canadian sport ownership history.

He broke John Candy's heart and diverted funds to the Kings. He should be lower (higher) up on that list.

He also limited Candy's portion of money he had to put up for the franchise, and the amount of losses he had to cover at the end of the season. Doesn't sound too bad to me. Although the diversion of funds was pretty bad, he needed to keep doing that in order to keep the pyramid scheme he had going on. The Argos were not going to be profitable anyways. His other co-owner thought highly enough of him to delay his jersey retirement in LA until McNall was released from prison and able to attend. That's gotta say something about him. And no owner since them has done anything better with the franchise. In fact most have done worse. Much worse.


yes he did.
and the added stress of the Argos turmoil may have wreaked further havoc on his health that year..

6. Bruce McNall Team: Toronto Argonauts (1991-1994)

In 1991, they arrived with bright lights and loud noises, the Hollywood-inspired group of McNall, Wayne Gretzky and actor John Candy. They bought the Argos and they signed a bona fide star prospect for an unprecedented sum, a four-year contract worth $18-million to Notre Dame standout Raghib (The Rocket) Ismail. The Argos won the Grey Cup that year, but interest and attendance waned. In 1994, McNall pleaded guilty to fraud — the total of which exceeded US$230-million — in a U.S. court. The team was left in another uncertain position.

Postscript: Candy, the Toronto native, died of a heart attack that same year. “John was — I know for a fact because I had the conversation with him — he was looking at buying the Argos just before he died,? former Argos lineman Don Moen has said. “Whether he was going to be able to do it, I don’t know. But he loved it.?

Candy had an insane work schedule that year too. Four major movies he was filiming back to back and simultaneous. Very possible he was doing that to put the money he needed together. We'll never know :frowning: RIP Big Man

And that's without counting Ballard's time as owner of the Ticats. They did win a Cup with him; does that salvage a little respect for him?

I'll leave that to Ticat fans to decide.

This was the first of many stains on the reputation of Gretzky… Gretzky said in an interview I watched that the Argos were only getting 11000 paid attendance… Then of course there was the whole gambling saga with his wife, but possibly the greatest stain on his legacy would be his joke of a coaching career and how he pretty much destroyed the career of Kyle Turris… Of course after Gretzky was sent packing, the franchise advanced further than ever in the playoffs and Turris was able to somewhat reclaim a once promising career in Ottawa.

David Brayley should of been mumber 10... He has now saved 3 franchises, but all three are in fact in worse shape then then he bought them.. The tigercats were getting about 17k a game when I bought them... They were getting 13 when he sold them... The Argos were getting 25... Now they are getting 13.. The Lions were getting 14 when he bought them a d Ackles got them up to 35.. Since Ackles death, they are back to less than 20 this up coming season.


Yes, but to put it in perspective there are 9 CFL teams from this era being polled (because surely there were some WAY worse owners in yesteryears), and the rest of the list leagues have had 11 (7 HNL, 2 NBA, 2 MLB...sorry...not really including soccer on its own...it is not big enough here YET), so really, that is not as bad as it sounds. Another way to look at it...NHL has 7 teams, and 4 owners on the list (4/7...57%)....CFL has 5 but 9 teams(5/9...55%)...pretty equal. The NBA and MLB have went on the list at least once per team (4/4...100%+).

Let me make it clear, I'm not a Leaf fan and frankly I think if you are buying Leaf merchandise at this point in their franchise you're just enabling them. I also was not born for most of his "infamous" career as owner of the two pro teams. That being said, despite winning us a Grey Cup, and disliking Leafs, I can't say I have even a modicum of respect the man.

I think the fact that he outright said "Why would I go for Gretzky when I'm packing my stadium every night anyways." showed where his true allegiance was. The fact the man was a criminal convicted of fraud and tax evasion certainly speaks to his character. I think the way he screwed the Toro's should have gotten him sued. I think ransoming a CBC broadcast for lighting you installed is ridiculous. I think as an owner, to have that much of a hands on approach and blatantly disrespect solid talent is a sign of ineptitude. I think it's incredibly disrespectful, as an owner to sell your championship banners especially since teams before your coming earned them. I also can't say I like people who pitch parts of historic stadiums that the hall of fame are trying to acquire into a trash compactor, nor people who take down pictures of the Queen for no other reason then "Because she doesn't pay me to be here".

He is part of the reason why I have little respect for many Leaf fans. You had a criminal, anti-union, sexist, racist, egotistical, price gouging, corporate bully in charge of your team who for DECADES before the cap came around intentionally refused to go out and buy talent despite being one of (if not) the most financially successful teams in the league. This kind of ownership DOES NOT warrant consistent sell outs, which the Leafs experienced then and continue to do now.

I understand you have to stick by your team, but when your ownership and management group outright spits directly into your face by desecrating your team's history, refuses to try to produce a winning team in favour of producing a profitable team (and outright says it) and intentionally sabotages the team through hiring crony coaches and undermining the team captain and continues this kind of behaviour for decades, to still give him sellouts for that kind of behaviour is absurd.

The only thing I like about him was how he screwed Toronto (and the Argos) for years. A market who deserved him as an owner for not walking out on him when they should have.