Seahawks expected to name Peter McLoughlin CEO
NHL executive Peter McLoughlin is expected to be named the Seahawks new CEO, replacing Tod Leiweke who held that position for seven years.
Seattle Times staff reporter
RENTON — Peter McLoughlin shares the hockey pedigree of Tod Leiweke, the man he's expected to replace as Seahawks CEO.
McLoughlin spent the past four years as St. Louis Blues CEO, and he will be leaving the franchise for the Seahawks, a move first reported by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The Seahawks have not announced McLoughlin's hiring, but a news conference has been called for Thursday morning at 11:15.
The Seahawks are not hiring McLoughlin to make football decisions, but rather for his sports-business acumen. He is 53 and attended Harvard. Before coming to the NHL, he worked for 21 years at Anheuser-Busch, a national leader in sports marketing. Before that he was with NBC Sports.
Leiweke announced in July he would be leaving the team to become the CEO and minority owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning of the NHL. Leiweke was part of the process of hiring his successor, something he said could take months, not weeks, when his departure was announced on July 26.
Leiweke was at practice Wednesday, speaking afterward with coach Pete Carroll. Leiweke did not comment on the reports of McLoughlin's selection as CEO.
McLoughlin's hiring will complete a total facelift atop Seattle's NFL franchise over the past nine months. Back in January, Pete Carroll was named coach and executive vice president of football operations and John Schneider was hired as general manager.
One of the questions that still must be answered is the exact management structure. Previously, both Carroll and Schneider reported up to Leiweke.
McLoughlin will be filling the same job Leiweke accepted in 2003, but the circumstances are very different. For one thing, it is a bigger job as it will include Sounders FC, the second-year MLS franchise. For another, the Seahawks are a much more developed business now both in terms of ticket sales and with the franchise's new state-of-the-art headquarters.
The Seahawks weren't consistently selling out their new stadium then, and there was growing tension within the franchise between president Bob Whitsitt and coach Mike Holmgren.
The Seahawks have now sold out 56 consecutive regular-season home games, and five playoff games. The immediate task is to keep it full after the team went 9-23 the past two seasons. This June, Seahawks season tickets could be purchased without a wait for the first time in four years.
• Linebacker Leroy Hill had to wait out a one-game suspension before making his 2010 season debut. He'll have to wait even longer for his second game after suffering an injury that has him out indefinitely. Originally described as a calf strain, Carroll said the injury was in the area of Hill's Achilles. While not specified how much time Hill will miss, it's clear he will miss games, plural.
Danny O'Neil: 206-464-2364 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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