According to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, John Cassaday appears to be the man to replace out-going Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment president and CEO Tim Leiweke.
Leiweke, who joined MLSE in April 2013 on a reported five-year contract, is scheduled to leave the company on June 30.
MLSE is the parent company of the Toronto Maple Leafs among others.
Cassaday recently retired as president and CEO of Toronto-based radio and television broadcaster, Corus Entertainment.
“Cassaday is a proven leader,” said a person close to the MLSE board told TSN’s Rick Westhead in October. “He has handled a publicly traded company in Corus, its board and family ownership issues flawlessly. He is stable. A sure hand on the tiller. And he’s mature and knows how to manage divisions and factions within a company. And he’s Canadian and probably is looking for a change before he retires.”
Westhead reports Cassaday’s deal with MLSE could be in the neighborhood of $2.5 million per year, plus bonuses on a three-year deal.
Former Madison Square Garden executive Hank Ratner, NHL executive John Collins and former CFL Commissioner Mark Cohon were all reportedly candidates for the job.
MLSE chairman Larry Tanenbaum told The Globe and Mail “We’re close” when asked about naming a replacement for Leiweke on Thursday.
Cassaday could be announced as early as next week.
A day after it was confirmed that Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment President and CEO Tim Leiweke would leave the organization by June 2015, we may have more clarity on the 57-year-old’s next move.
According to TSN’s Gord Miller, reports have Leiweke is going back to Los Angeles to head up an Olympic bid for 2024, which would also include an NFL stadium.
Leiweke, who joined MLSE in June 2013, moved to Toronto after holding a similar role with AEG, which owns the Los Angeles Kings and Staples Center among others.
It’s not easy being a locked out NHL player. You can’t use team facilities to work out. You can’t use team ice to practice. You can’t use anything that has to do with your team, period.
Toronto’s Joffrey Lupul found out, as the National Post’s Sean Fitz-Gerald notes, that also means not getting reservations at Real Sports, a sports bar next to Air Canada Centre in Toronto. He took his complaints to Twitter for good measure.
Real Sports is run by Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, the same company that runs the Leafs, Raptors, Marlies, and Toronto FC soccer club. Apparently that means they can’t associate with any of the NHL players because of the lockout as well.
And here you thought the lockout couldn’t get any sillier. Maybe next time Lupul, or any other player who might want to go tip a few back there, can make a reservation under a fake name. I hear Abe Froman is a good name to use in Chicago.