Ray Lalonde Gone !

Pretty much called it...

[url=http://www.lapresse.ca/sports/football/201205/11/01-4524465-ray-lalonde-aurait-quitte-son-poste-chez-les-alouettes.php?utm_categorieinterne=trafficdrivers&utm_contenuinterne=cyberpresse_B9_sports_257_accueil_POS1]http://www.lapresse.ca/sports/football/ ... cueil_POS1[/url]

WHOA. Was it a case of him getting frustrated at not having the resources of his previous team (the Canadiens), or a case of Wetenhall saying, "You've done squat in one year, pack your bags"?

Either way, I'd say it's good news for the team. Like many of you, I've been very disappointed by Lalonde's failure to promote the team and grow the fanbase. I expected a lot more from a guy with such gaudy credentials. Hopefully the next president is a hard worker who understands how to grow an SMB.

Owner says he put structures in place that were badly needed and worked hard.... Also says he left of his own free will but so did Smith :roll: Anyway he gave a long interview to Lapresse early in the week which gave no indication that he was leaving quite to the contrary and a few days later he's quit and is out of the country. People can come to their own conclusions.

They need to find a Great "Cook" instead o a great "Chef"...

Article also says he's leaving for personal reasons. BS or actual truth? No way to know, I guess. If he did good structural things for the org, that's great, but the president also needs to be able to raise the team's profile in the community and bring more fans into the fanbase through marketing, cross-promotions, a functional web site, and timely merch.

And I would add one very important quality to that - a football fan to boot! We most definitely need someone with good links to the business community to generate much needed cash flow/sponsorship, but we also need someone who knows something about football.

I have posted several times in the past that football is a hard sell in Quebec, although things are definitely improving with the football programmes in Laval and U de M. We are seeing more and more French Canadian players distinguishing themselves in the CFL. The GM needs to touch base with institutions like these, Cegeps, and invite these players to training camps, organize skills programmes in the off-season... Lastly, and perhaps most importanly, he must make the Als team more visible!

Well, sure, he has to know something about football, but really, as long as he is aggressive in promoting the team and relentless in leveraging marketing opportunities, I'll be happy. You don't have to be a football man to realize the importance of fan-friendly promotions, of making sure your merch is available on time, of reestablishing the team's presence in the corporate community. Just pound the pavement, get out there and sell the damn club, that's your job. I didn't see much of that from Lalonde.

I wish somebody like Michael Soles could do it, or maybe Eric Lapointe.

Thanks for your color coded map Ray, your family section and your cool framings of AC's records and souvenir tees of Cahoon's and AC's records. I'm guessing C1 will be the tough sell this year: what a price increase in that section.

At least all the most expensive sections are sold out. He solidified the centre of the stadium, now to work on the rest.

A "choc" to me. Never expected that. It must be extremely difficult to work with Jim Popp and Marc Trestman. They are running the show on the football side and they have the blessings of the owner. I am sure that Mr. Lalonde wanted to bring changes-ex. less silence/more openness when a player is signed or released- but Jim Popp decides. Many times you have to peruse the off-season roster to see if a player has been added or released. This method makes it harder to sell the game.

It will be difficult to find an adequate replacement. In the meantime I hope that the current VP of Operations and Events,Mr. Mark Weightman is named the interim President. Will probably be Paul Harris. Is it time for Mr Wetenhall to appoint one of his sons as President? Language could be an issue for some persons but we need a President whom will be respected by all.


His slogan last year turned out to be prophetic.

'Alouettes.Football.Champions.Point' which is exactly how many the als scored in the final reg. season game in BC.

He did his best. Enjoyed having him for a year.

It's weird that he chose This day of all days when the tickets go on sale to the public. I wonder how many season tickets were sold up to date?

I'm guessing that Paul Harris will assume the post again for this season. I don't know if it's wise to choose someone on such short notice. Mark Weightman definitely sounds like a good idea. He's been with this team as long as Jim, in Baltimore.

Was Eric Lapointe's name not mentioned at one point prior to Lalonde taking the job? He might fit the bill, financial background and of course ex Al player from Quebec.

I do not think it will be that difficult to find an adequate replacement. 234ever already mentioned two names that would be possibilities. And there are probably others who would throw their name in the ring.

I have said before, from what I saw, Lalonde still had allot of work to do promoting this team. Were his hands tied, we will never really know.
I just seem to think the team name was out there more when Smih was the President than Lalonde.

DP hits it on the head. The President needs to sell and market the team.

Le problème de Lalonde est que les gens voulaient qu'il réussisse en un an ce qu'il a fait avec le club de hockey en huit ans.

Je ne sais pas quelle latitude il avait au sein de l'organisation, mais s'il a estimé qu'il n'avait pas les coudées assez franches pour réussir ce qu'il visait, ce n'est pas le genre de gars à avaler sans réagir. Certains lui ont reproché son silence lors de la conférence téléphonique, mais qui sait si ce silence n'a pas été exigé par Popp et Trestman, genre, c'est une discussion sur le football, c'est nous qui parlons.

Je persiste à croire que l'équipe perd un bon président, et que le problème de la présidence demeure non seulement entier, mais pire encore qu'il ne l'était maintenant que c'est Lalonde qui est parti. Il y avait de bonnes raisons pour le départ de Smith, mais pas pour celui de Lalonde. Là, pour la succession, deux questions vont trotter dans la tête d'éventuels candidats à sa succession. Ou bien Lalonde est parti parce qu'il a compris que les objectifs de l'organisation sont irréalisables avec le peu de latitude qu'on laisse au président, ou bien il est parti parce les Alouettes ont plafonné en tant que produit. Ça va être difficile de trouver quelqu'un de sa trempe pour présider les Alouettes.

Quand je regarde tout ça, j'ai certaines appréhensions pour la présence de l'équipe à Montréal.

Justement. Pour ça, il faut des contacts, des budgets, des canaux de diffusion et une stratégie. J'aime bien Soles et Lapointe, mais je ne crois pas qu'ils aient les contacts, les entrées aux canaux de diffusion et la capacité stratégique pour améliorer la mise en marché des Alouettes à Montréal. Ils devront défoncer beaucoup de portes avant de relever la situation, portes qui s'ouvraient d'elles-mêmes lorsque Lalonde prenait contact.

You don't need more than one year to get a goddamn web site to be functional, or to update your merchandise, or to come up with some kind of fan promotion in time for the mini-camp. Seriously, no one was asking him to add 10k to our fanbase overnight or other walk-on-water-type miracles. I expected better visibility in the media and basic elements of the franchise (web site, store) to be functional, and you can't blame that on Jim Popp's shadow influence. What would he have to gain by clusteffing our merchandise?

Could be wrong but I don't think this had to do with the football personel. Of course when your looking for money to do stuff and you are limited because your football operations are consuming much of the capital. It is always a political battle but Ray would have known that coming in. I really think it comes down to the bottom line. That is how things are measured when you have a negative balance sheet. My guess is Ray could not promise that the situation would rectify itslef this year.

Ray restructured the operation but it did not translate to a better bottom line. I am very concerned as a fan becasue the Als the only expenses they can actually play with are wages so if the owner is resolute in improving his bottom line it could spill out into the football operations of the club and we would lose guys like Jim and Marc. Then there is the whole bunch of other problems like declining sponsorship, non existant practice facilities and one of the worst merchandising program in pro sports.

I don't know who the right guy is, not even sure there is one. I don't think an ex player is the answer. I think they need someone with very strong connection with Montreal business leaders. Like an Ackles or a Rudge. Otherwise I see a downward spiral or Bob selling.

Ray came in thinking that since this team had already won 2 cups that he could do minimal marketing and the team will sell itself. He unfortunately didn’t understand the reality of the Alouettes and the Montreal market and got burned. When he came to the Habs they were a sad sack organization that couldn’t make the playoffs and couldn’t sell out the Bell Centre. Expectations were not as high and the Habs didn’t need to win any cups to sell they just needed to win more games than lose at home and just make the playoffs each year.

He was expected to maintain what the als had already accomplished and to take it to the next step which was a big task and a lot of pressure. Unfortunately reality set in and he did the best he could with the resources he had. The team helped him out with Ben Cahoon night and AC setting all those records and Richardson having an MVP should have been year.

sadly have to agree.


I think Eric Lapointe could be right for the job. A local ex Al player from the community. Well liked and also in the fincial world. He probably does have contacts and if not, his name would be a big help obtaining the contacts.