The Ottawa Senators have announced the hiring of Anthony LeBlanc as President of Business Operations today. LeBlanc replaces Jim Little in the role after the latter was relieved of his duties, six weeks ago.
Anthony LeBlanc Becomes President of Business Ops
LeBlanc, an Ottawa resident, has been a sales and marketing executive for the past 25 years. He was most recently a founding partner of Schooner Sports and Entertainment. The group is currently in talks with the Canadian Football League to bring an expansion team, the Atlantic Schooners, to Halifax, Nova Scotia. However, the executive position at the Senators has caused LeBlanc to abandon the CFL project he spearheaded. He now returns to a sporting landscape he is very familiar with.
LeBlanc previously served as the President, CEO, co-owner and alternate governor of the Arizona Coyotes. He oversaw the change in the franchise’s name from Phoenix to Arizona in 2014. He was also part of the active discussions in 2016, between the Coyotes and Arizona State University, on a new arena for the team. The Coyotes were eyeing a relocation from Glendale to Tempe, AZ, to move closer to the fanbase’s residential hotspots. Unfortunately, the Coyotes announced the deal prematurely at a press conference without an ASU representative present. The deal would later fall through when Arizona State University pulled out, three months later.
Replacing Jim Little
“I am thrilled to be appointed to the position of President and Business Operations with the Senators,” LeBlanc stated. He said he has been “a diehard Senators fan since the Sens rejoined the league,” and that, “this opportunity is truly an honour.”
The Ottawa Senators fired the former President of Business Ops, Jim Little, on the 4th March 2020. The press release at the time attributed his dismissal to conduct “inconsistent” with the core values of the NHL and the Senators Organisation. Meanwhile, Little claimed that his firing was the result of a personal disagreement and some strong language exchanged with the Senators Owner, Eugene Melnyk. Little spent 54 days in the role.
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