A Friend of Unfair Park directs our attention to yet another Sports Business Journal story about Tom Hicks -- this one, a massive profile that attempts to reconcile his personal wealth ("The Matisse on the library wall looks utterly appropriate") with his professional woes ("his sports portfolio, once among the most impressive in the industry, is in the process of disbandment"). Bruce Schoenfeld recaps Hicks's turbulent tenure as owner of the Texas Rangers, Dallas Stars and Liverpool FC -- all of which he's offloading, much to the delight of higher-ups within the respective sports. Says one unnamed NHL exec, "He needs to be gone."
Which has been Hicks's plan all along, he tells Schoenfeld in the 5,100-word profile. "This was never going to be a dynastic asset," he insists, meaning: He always bought with the intention of selling.
Grab your coffee. It's a long read, but worth every word -- very Fake Tom Hicks. Need proof? An excerpt:
What matters most to Hicks is the ultimate feedback of a big black number on his financial statement, and all three of his investments in sports franchises are primed to pay him handsome returns. That goes a long way toward mitigating the carping and criticism. "I've been doing high-risk, high-return investment since 1977," he said, leaning back in a chair at his home after a steak lunch cooked by his private chef. "It's all I've ever done. So I'm used to having some deals be great and some not work out. I don't get devastated because, at the end of the day, whatever happens, it's a deal. These are sports teams, so I have to read about it in the newspaper. That's the only difference."