Friday, September 16, 2011

Golden State Warriors Try Again

I just read about the Warriors' plans for next season. It's the usual thing, really--introduce the recent new owners and the brand new coach to thousands of fans at an event. Try to whip up excitement. Sadly, it nearly always ends in disappointment. The franchise has had a hard time for a long time.

I worked fulltime at the Warriors office for eight years--1986 - 1994. All of those seasons were good for me, but not all of them went so well for the team. We had a 20-win season and a 55-win season. We went to the playoffs and didn't go to the playoffs. We drafted at 14 and we drafted at 1. But nothing really brought the team into the upper echelons of the NBA.

We did, however, provide a great time and took very good care of our season ticket holders, who repaid us by loyally buying their tickets again each year. I like to think that my work on the season ticket holder magazine and events helped, but what makes franchises function is the fans.

Fan is short for "fanatic" and that's what keeps rational people paying large sums of money to watch other people run back and forth on the hardwood.

It's like buying a lottery ticket, really, because you have no control but you're always hoping for a payoff. And it could happen. That's the mindset that keeps fans coming back. Making it a good experience is important too, and I hope that the new ownership takes some lessons from the ownership of the mid '80s to mid '90s, whose enlightened guidance made a lot of a team that was never great but was always fun to watch--and occasionally overachieved and thrilled its loyal fans.

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