Rumor has it (from wrestling dirt-sheets) that the Wenatchee Wild of the NAHL, a Tier II Junior A league in the USA Hockey Program is about to announce former Shop-At-Home sports card guru and Total Nonstop Action Wrestling announcer Don West as their next General Manager. It adds to the lexicon of wrestling and hockey being intertwined.
For those who don't know Don West, here's some video action of what he has brought to many a TV screen late at night.
You cannot deny the energy and selling power West will bring to the table. It will draw a lot of attention to the team and maybe generate a few more ticket sales to people who remember him from his baseball card selling days or wrestling announcer days.
But, the question must be asked: What does Don West know about hockey and about management??
The answer right now-- not much about either.
West is a Purdue University graduate in broadcasting, then went on to be the pitchman at Shop-At-Home, hosting his own sports talk show in the Nashville area in 2001, then onto TNA wrestling as the color commentator. Aside from that, West has really nothing in way of management skills or hockey background when it comes to it all.
Of course, the dirt sheets could be COMPLETELY wrong in the reason why Don West is leaving, because it's so very random; but if this does come to fruition-- I know I'll pay more attention to the NAHL and Wenatchee Wild.
Yet, is that the only reason the Wild are doing this or thinking of doing this-- the publicity?? Because if so, it's quite the short-sighted idea and could be the start of the death kneel for the team in itself to hire a guy with no experience for such a position. Sure, it's not like he's going into the NHL and trying to run stuff, but the fact he really has no known hockey background or upper management background, it could make his team a sitting duck unless they surround him with a lot of knowledgeable people or he knows more than he lets on....it just seems like a crazy gimmick to attract attention-- which it has.
It may not be the best business move on the surface, but from a publicity stand-point, GENIUS.
And if, in fact, West does trade ten mixed boxes of wax packs for a top player; then he's craftier than we gave him credit for.