June 1, 1997 in Sports

Don’t Let Packers Set An Example

Bob Sansevere St. Paul Pioneer Press
 

The Green Bay Packers are a bunch of wimps. Did you see what they did? Their whiny fans started griping because the Packers weren’t planning to invite every member of the Super Bowl team to a special ring presentation. So, the Packers caved in. They decided to invite everyone, including players who have signed with other teams. Bunch of wimps.

The Packers just don’t get it.

They don’t have to kowtow to fans. This is the ‘90s. Teams don’t have to listen to fans in this day and age.

The Packers finally won another Super Bowl, but they’re still living in the ‘60s.

They should have ignored their fans, which is how other pro sports franchises would have handled it.

Can you imagine Twins owner Carl Pohlad listening to fans? If he did, the Twins would be staying put in Minnesota with or without a new stadium.

And how about the Vikings? Their ownership is making rumblings about moving to another city unless they receive a more lucrative Metrodome lease. If the owners did what fans want, there would be no talk of moving, and Vikings president Roger Headrick and coach Denny Green would be gone.

If they haven’t already, fans need to realize they have no rights. And why should they? Teams don’t exist for them. Teams exist so their rich owners can get even richer. Teams remain in cities only at the whim of the owner. They can leave any time they want. Just ask Pohlad and his three offspring.

If team owners don’t get a new stadium built or don’t get special concessions, they don’t have to stay in a city. It doesn’t matter how much fans howl. Fans have no clout. They have no say.

It’s such an archaic idea, listening to fans.

There are only two things fans need do, renew season tickets annually and keep their traps shut about the way the team is run. Except in Green Bay, a.k.a. Wimptown, it does no good for fans to complain.

Anyone who believes other teams might follow the Packers’ lead and start listening to fans is delusional. All the Packers did was create false hope for fans nationwide.

You can bet there are more than a few team owners around the country laughing at the Packers. The Packers listened to their fans. Har, har, har.

No good can come of this. All of a sudden, fans across America will think if they start squawking it will make a difference. Well, it won’t. All that will happen is those fans will get whacked with a sledgehammer of reality.

Aside from wimpy Green Bay, team owners just don’t care about fans.

If anyone doubts that, just check with someone in Cleveland who used to root for the Browns. Or, someone in Winnipeg who used to root for the Jets. Or, just check Wednesday’s paper. You had Pohlad basically saying he didn’t give a hoot about fans. He said he’s going to consider his options, which include moving the Twins to another city.

“We can’t control you interpreting this as a threat,” Pohlad said.

The truth is, he doesn’t care if you interpret it as a threat. Your interpretation doesn’t matter. Because you don’t matter.

Did Norm Green care about North Stars fans?

Of course not. And why should he? It was his team. It didn’t belong to fans. They … have … no … rights!

Presumably, the Packers gave in to their fans because the team is publicly owned. That’s the danger of letting fans have a piece of the team. Sometimes, their opinion actually does count.

You won’t see other teams acquiescing to fans, though. The Packers are just an aberration, a blip on the screen of abnormal franchise conduct.

Other teams won’t wimp out.


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