Well it was an interesting hour not horribly enlightening but interesting that a group of us got to spend with Tim Leiweke and a few of his Henchpeople on Friday morning when he visited with our editorial board. The one thing that stood out to me and I don’t think I’m talking too much out of turn here is that he says he realizes now that he’s not the story nor the focus and that yes he probably came off a bit brusque and a bit — I think was his word — bullish – in his first few weeks on the job. And the one thing I was glad to hear was him suggest that he indeed didn’t treat Bryan Colangelo as well as he should have when that departure was happening. I think Tim’s over-exuberance at making the change atop HOTH World got a bit in the way his excitement to start something new with Masai Ujiri made it look like he was gleeful at dumping Bryan and a couple of shots that were taken were actually regrettable. I’m more than willing to accept that as an explanation and a bit of an apology too; I’ve always thought the treatment of Bryan at the end bordered on disrespect and it was good to hear Tim say quite sincerely that he realizes the mistake he made. Look it’s been a long time — maybe forever — since there’s been one face of the city’s sports franchises and that Leiweke came in all gangbusters took everyone by surprise because it was so out of the ordinary. I honestly think there’s a Canadian Sensibility that has to be learned there is a way we treat people and way we handle ourselves that might run counter to how things are done in the United States and there are nuances to running such a public trust as Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment that has to be learned. It won’t come easy I don’t think but it seems that fact has hit home and will be worked on in the coming months or so.
Tim Leiweke’s apology to former Raptors GM Bryan Colangelo a solid first step
Toronto Star | Jul 30