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Thread: The TFC Effect

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    Default The TFC Effect

    Do you guys think that TFC's approach to team building, and then the success that has come with that, has rubbed off on the other Toronto teams?

    Now, obviously the Raps have been good for a while now, but they were never truly great; but this year all their talk is about the team first, always the team first, and now they've won the whole East.

    And the Leafs certainly saw their fortunes really turn around in the last couple of seasons, coincidental to the rise of TFC.

    Do you think those players are consciously following the TFC philosophy, or that MLSE has sort of 'imposed' it in a top-down way once they saw the success TFC has had?

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    Quote Originally Posted by James17930 View Post
    Do you guys think that TFC's approach to team building, and then the success that has come with that, has rubbed off on the other Toronto teams?

    Now, obviously the Raps have been good for a while now, but they were never truly great; but this year all their talk is about the team first, always the team first, and now they've won the whole East.

    And the Leafs certainly saw their fortunes really turn around in the last couple of seasons, coincidental to the rise of TFC.

    Do you think those players are consciously following the TFC philosophy, or that MLSE has sort of 'imposed' it in a top-down way once they saw the success TFC has had?
    Good question. I think it would have to be a combination of both. The real catalyst for change was when MLSE hired Tim Leiweke. He was the one who put the question out there "Why can't we be great?". He started the ball rolling but putting the correct people in the proper positions, and pushed to the forefront the fact that mediocrity was no longer acceptable. On the management side, they were required to do their homework on players that they wanted to bring into the mix. It does not matter what the internal philosophy is, if the players don't buy in, it will never be successful. We saw this first hand with the bloody big mistake. Defoe, as talented as he was, only cared about himself and getting himself into the best possible scenario. So, at least in my opinion, the 2 sides (players and MLSE) are entwined and the success that TFC has only proves that the team first model works and once you have full buy in, the sky is the limit.

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    Bring in good people to run things & let them do their jobs.

    Just happens that doing the job well in North American sports tends to be the same approach.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Blindside16 View Post
    The real catalyst for change was when MLSE hired Tim Leiweke. He was the one who put the question out there "Why can't we be great?". He started the ball rolling but putting the correct people in the proper positions, and pushed to the forefront the fact that mediocrity was no longer acceptable.
    Tim brought a new attitude and confidence to MLSE. He challenged everyone to think bigger and hired smart people to manage each team. TFC has seen the most dramatic improvement but each team is better organized and operated since Timís culture change.

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    Quote Originally Posted by benito View Post
    Tim brought a new attitude and confidence to MLSE. He challenged everyone to think bigger and hired smart people to manage each team. TFC has seen the most dramatic improvement but each team is better organized and operated since Tim’s culture change.
    I beg to differ that TFC was the biggest turnaround... Do you remember how bad the leafs were 5 years ago?

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    Toronto's success is absolutely influencing the determination to see the same in the other teams in MLSE.
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    Quote Originally Posted by benito View Post
    Tim brought a new attitude and confidence to MLSE. He challenged everyone to think bigger and hired smart people to manage each team. TFC has seen the most dramatic improvement but each team is better organized and operated since Timís culture change.
    Tim hired Bez. He is also directly responsible for bringing Masai Ujuri in for the Raptors and Brendan Shanahan in for the Leafs. He singlehandedly transformed MLSE by giving these guys the space they needed to create their teams in the image of long term contenders.

    It's not a TFC effect per se. TFC is equally a symptom of the TL effect.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul-collins View Post
    Tim hired Bez. He is also directly responsible for bringing Masai Ujuri in for the Raptors and Brendan Shanahan in for the Leafs. He singlehandedly transformed MLSE by giving these guys the space they needed to create their teams in the image of long term contenders.

    It's not a TFC effect per se. TFC is equally a symptom of the TL effect.
    Gotta agree with you there, particularly the last line stating that it is more TFC benefitting from the TL effect.

    There have also been a few instances that have contributed to the renaissance in the Toronto sports scene, some inspirational moments and slices of luck. Bautista's bat flip (not MLSE related, granted, but significant nonetheless) was one moment that whetted the city's appetite for success as was the hockey equivalent of winning the lottery when the Leafs were fortunate enough to pick up Matthews.

    TFC has certainly added to the fervour, but I don't really believe we have been the driving force.

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    Yeah this is a TL thing, not a TFC thing

    Each MLSE franchise turned around significantly in the 12 month stretch from mid-2013 to mid-2014

    - Raptors hired Masai, who flipped out some of the trash on the roster (ie Bargnani) and then the Raps won the division the next year. Admittedly they were a James Dolan veto away from blowing it all up but sometimes lucky > good
    - TFC started to get the influx of cash to go after DP's (Defoe/Bradley etc)
    - Leafs hired Shanahan and started the first real tank in years

    In retrospect its pretty incredible, considering that TFC/Leafs were either the worst or very close to worst run clubs in their respective leagues and the Raptors weren't far off. And now five years later its the exact opposite.

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    TL should have a statue.

    It's all on him. All of it.

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    Actually, I think a lot of it has to do with the sale of MLSE from the Ontario Teacher's Pension Fund to the Bogers consortium. I remember the Macleans article from around 2008 about why the Leaf's suck and how a lot of it could be attributed to the OTPF's value of stable cash flows over everything else - mediocrity or pure suckitude didn't matter so long as the money rolled in. When Bogers bought in, they had incentive to add value to their media holdings if the MLSE teams were good and more people would watch. Thus, they hired Tim Lieweke.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Initial B View Post
    Actually, I think a lot of it has to do with the sale of MLSE from the Ontario Teacher's Pension Fund to the Bogers consortium. I remember the Macleans article from around 2008 about why the Leaf's suck and how a lot of it could be attributed to the OTPF's value of stable cash flows over everything else - mediocrity or pure suckitude didn't matter so long as the money rolled in. When Bogers bought in, they had incentive to add value to their media holdings if the MLSE teams were good and more people would watch. Thus, they hired Tim Lieweke.

    Yeah I agree. It was a combo of the sale to Bogers, and the hiring of Tim L.

    Before this happened the teams were treated as cash cows and nothing more.

    No effort or inclination to winning.

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    I think its the Leafs and everyone else. For the most part winning drives ticket sales and overall interest. They have a hold on this city like no other and as the past showed even down and out seasons the building was still packed. For instances the Jays. Just look at the Jays the lowest attendance for a home game last year was over 28K where we have already seen it dip to early 2015 levels of just over 17K. That's the difference of coming off a big post-season run vs. missing out on it all together. The Reds are high right now but that is not to say a bad season or two the it could very fall back to nights in the area of 15-18K, maybe less. This opinion piece from the Star a few days ago while not mentioning the Reds, gives you an idea.

    https://www.thestar.com/sports/bluej...blue-jays.html

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    I offer another perspective - MLSE Finally put MLS Soccer/Football minded people in the proper roles. Anselmi, along with most of the TFC Front Office Staff were never into the sport much less MLS. I feel that over the years Lieweke, Bez, Vanney, Robin, Manning brought more direction and MLS Centric train of thought. They arrived at different times but no together for couple of years - it yielded results.

    By contrast, you would not see a Non NHL or Non NBA person in those respective Team Management.

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    I would say its an organization wide shift implemented by Leiweke. TFC are the first to see the benefits since its much easier to improve the roster for an MLS team than it is for NHL, NBA etc where the best athletes in your sport are under contract to competitors.

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    Leiweke provided and continues to provide cover for Bez. Even when Manning was brought in, Bez was protected. This patience is what has rewarded us with these two seasons.

    Leiweke similarly provided cover for Shanahan and Babcock (understanding that Babcock is a stronger, more well known presence in the NHL, but in the Toronto market he needed more protection because the media and fan base are crazy idiiots). The patience is similarly paying off.

    I agree that the variety of proper soccer minded people hired and listened to is what has created TFC of today. But that doesn't happen without Leiweke. It's on him.

    I'm certainly receptive to the argument that the Bell/Rogers buyout of Teachers' has provided *him* with the protection needed to be able to do this.

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    I would say enjoy this while it lasts.

    A lot of the investment in MLSE over the next 10 years is dependent upon some large unknowns:


    • ROI with a deep Leafs playoff run - assuming they do a deep run at least one year, is there a signifcant ROI for MLSE & for Rogers with their TV contract?
    • ROI on a deep Raptors run
    • Long term ROI with TFC - if they can sustain & become perennial contenders, what is the ROI?


    Less important but still a consideration

    • World Cup 2026 - MLSE & the Bogers can both milk a lot of stuff out of such an event
    • CFL uptick - can marketing & decent management slowly move this game to be as popular #'s wise in this market as it is in other Canadian cities i.e. can they get 25K (the goal isn't to be as relevant or reach the same % of the community as they do in Winnipeg or Calgary)
    • Other probable investments (a woman's soccer team)
    Last edited by OgtheDim; 04-10-2018 at 04:28 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by paul-collins View Post
    Leiweke provided and continues to provide cover for Bez. Even when Manning was brought in, Bez was protected. This patience is what has rewarded us with these two seasons.

    Leiweke similarly provided cover for Shanahan and Babcock (understanding that Babcock is a stronger, more well known presence in the NHL, but in the Toronto market he needed more protection because the media and fan base are crazy idiiots). The patience is similarly paying off.

    I agree that the variety of proper soccer minded people hired and listened to is what has created TFC of today. But that doesn't happen without Leiweke. It's on him.

    I'm certainly receptive to the argument that the Bell/Rogers buyout of Teachers' has provided *him* with the protection needed to be able to do this.
    Its pretty simple to me, TL is never brought in if the OTPS still was the majority owner, this would have been on a different path, likely meaning no major DPs.
    Last edited by Red CB Toronto; 04-10-2018 at 05:20 PM.

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    Disagree like the above on the TFC effect, it's more Leiweke. Raptors have been doing the same team-first approach for years, signing high-character team-first players and staff. They have improved every year, but the biggest factor this year was a playing style change, much as TFC's success upon switching to a 3-5-2. That's not really a TFC effect, that's a you have the pieces just finding the right strategy. It's the Bez+Vanney/Shannahan+Babcock/Ujiri +Casey strategy. Get good people in the right roles and let them do their thing. When management gets involved influencing decisions it gets messy. A business guy telling the basketball guy how to do basketball? Tim Leiweke knew you let the guy who knows make the call; that's why you hired him

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    Like everyone else said Tim Leiweke is a big part of why Toronto teams are now successful.

    He came in and ruffled feathers. He simply got shit done. Enjoy this while it lasts.

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    Leiweke effect.
    Brought some sports professionalism to the whole ship of fools. Let's face it, there was a lot of "speculation" about dodgy agents/deals/in it for myself type stuff going on, not to mention politics around DP nationalities to sell tickets for TFC in the first bunch of years.

    Raptors/Leafs? Yeah, they brought in legitimate professionals to run a team, not sell tickets.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard View Post
    Like everyone else said Tim Leiweke is a big part of why Toronto teams are now successful.

    He came in and ruffled feathers. He simply got shit done. Enjoy this while it lasts.
    This is correct. He spent the money and made the deals to get thing done. The focus now is reaping those benefits and collecting the revenue. When time comes to reinvest back into the machine to keep the good times rolling, will be interesting to see who's in charge and what they do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by OgtheDim View Post
    Less important but still a consideration

    • World Cup 2026 - MLSE & the Bogers can both milk a lot of stuff out of such an event
    • CFL uptick - can marketing & decent management slowly move this game to be as popular #'s wise in this market as it is in other Canadian cities i.e. can they get 25K (the goal isn't to be as relevant or reach the same % of the community as they do in Winnipeg or Calgary)
    • Other probable investments (a woman's soccer team)
    One thing often not talked about is the growth in their Live business. Lots of music in the ACC, new venues of various sizes coming. It's going to be a big piece of the MLSE machine going forward.

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    Leiweke deserves credit for sure. The guy deserves a statue for what he's done for this city.

    That said, if it wasn't Leiweke it would have been someone else. It wasn't a tough job for him to come in, just after Bell and Rogers freed us from the shackles of the OTPP, and point out that this was a massively under-served sports market in a highly desirable location. The extent to which he got the new owners to buy in on the same philosophy of spending more than anyone else in NA on infrastructure and personnel is worthy of praise, but it would have happened to some extent regardless. I don't wan't to play down his accomplishment, because he did go out and put everything in place and hire all those people and convinced Bell and Rogers to fork over metric tons of cash to fund all of it. I think it's very likely that this aggressive change in approach and philosophy would have happened in some form or another whether he was here or not.

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    Tim Leiweke deserves full credit! I completely agree 100%!

 

 

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