Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Look at the Heineman Chat

This Friday, Robb Heineman participated in a chat on the blog for Sporting KC, The Sporting Way. Much of it was spent talking about the rebranding and the new logo. There were a few other points brought up. There are a few topics from that Q&A that I wanted to look into a little bit more.

The first topic has to do with Heineman's talk about members and their benefits. On Wednesday, Heineman said that there would be perks for members, including free tickets for traveling away support, deals on partner products, and free access to the supporters' section. There are other things as well according to Heineman but these are not finalized quite yet. Heineman did say that there would be no cost to be a member as well. He also seemed to hint at some votes for members as well. An interesting idea, one that seems to combine some of the aspects of Seattle's current set up and other organizations as well. It will be interesting to see what actually comes from this and how they go about implementing and executing this members program.

Heineman was also asked about hosting an MLS Cup or All Star game in the near future. Heineman said he'd love to host the game next year but doesn't know if it's possible. He also mentioned hosting the all star game in 2012 or 2013. This goes against a rumor that came out of Toronto this weekend that Kansas City would be hosting next year's all star game. But when you look at the two side by side I'd lean more towards trusting Heineman instead of Steve Davis.

The next topic to address from the chat is the continued work towards getting a jersey sponsor. The Wizards are one of only a few teams that do not currently have a jersey sponsor. Earlier in the week during the State of the League address, Don Garber said that he hoped all teams would have jersey sponsors by next season and that he expected announcements in the next month or so. Heineman said during the chat that they aren't that close but that he hoped that they'd have something to announce in February.

Finally I wanted to touch on the topic of the other teams that the Sporting Club is bringing in under their banner. Currently they don't have any set plans for announcing any other teams but they have plenty of thoughts out there. One worry for fans is that other teams in less revenue friendly sports than soccer currently is would drag down the potential success of the soccer team. Heineman said that soccer is the groups biggest, most important aspect. "We won't do anything that has the potential to detract from our ability to win."

The part that stuck out to me was when he answered a question about what other teams would be named. Heineman said that "Sporting Kansas City will only represent the Major League Soccer team." This point makes me go back to the question of why rename the team in the first place. If the soccer team is going to be the only team called Sporting, then why rename the Wizards to Sporting? Why not just rename OnGoal to Sporting Club and bring in the other teams as well? Heineman says all the teams will also have their own logos with the SC being the only joining of the teams. If Heineman and OnGoal want a true Sporting Club, most would expect all the teams under the banner to have the same name. It almost brings out the old thoughts that the team was only renamed for the European connotation of the name.


Reepicheep said...

Some days I think Ongoal has this all figured out and is executing according to their internal plan. Other days, like today and since listening to that chat, I think they are flying by the seat of their pants on this whole thing.

It's hard to know what to think or feel about this. Well enough should have been left alone...but it wasn't.

Anonymous said...

This rebranding has killed my enthusiasm...fuck you Rob and the horse you rode in on!

Walter said...

As someone who allegedly prides himself with his open communication with the fans, he seemed pretty dismissive with his answer to my question about not buying the explanation of the new brand. The reasoning still seems weak and unconvincing to most everybody I've talked to. I'm more disappointed today than was last week. Hoping long-time fans will merely tolerate the new brand doesn't seem like the best move to me. But I could be wrong.

Anonymous said...

completely agree with walter

i really thought once i heard more i'd feel better about the whole situation but the way they've handeled it and their further explaination has only made me even more disappointed then last week.