Joe Lacob Is Just A Lucky Guy But He Won’t Admit It, Guys Like Him Never Do
The venture capitalist and majority owner of the NBA’s stat busting and best winning season recordholder of all-time in the Golden State Warriors thinks a great deal of the success has to do with his management skills. The New York Times Magazine did a feature on the supposed annointed one and his managerial prowess, and unsurprisingly readers were left to feel the upper brass and their management played the central and pivotal role in the team’s relatively recent success.
Setting aside the emotions and enthusiams that come with owning any professional sports team, this dude is convinced that his designs on the business and its structure is what and why we should take note. This grandiose phrasing extends to how grateful Oakland should be in terms of how Lacob has reinvorgated a team that previously last won a championship back in 1975. We should all be waiting in anticipation for the handbook on how savvy a businessman that Lacob, along with his informed group of investors have to be in order to produce a championship team. When they bought the team in 2010 (with Curry already playing for the team) for about $450 million it seemed absurd to many because the team plays in Oakland, and that sharply contrasts with teams who play against the more ritzier backdrop and brighter lights of storied cities like Boston, New York, Miami, and Los Angeles. I believe the intent which was made public not long after the purchase was to eventually move the team to the affluent and more prodigious city of San Francisco which would almost immediately increase the value of the team. Lacob is said to have promised to win a championship within five years of the purchase. The Warriors did make their NBA Finals debut last season and is embarking on another championship this season.
The article continues to saturate you with stereotypes of the wealthy and their heroics by exploring Lacob’s philosophical self-indulgence. What struck a particular reverberating chord was when he noted that we shouldn’t focus on just Steph Curry, nor the team on the court, but moreso about how well thought out this was by the architect and chief himself.
“It’s not just Steph Curry,” he told me once. “It’s architecting a team, a style of play, the way they all play together. It’s all extremely thought through.”
This is like saying the Virginia Elite were the best in the cotton industry because of their acute management skills, becoming the most prosperous of all families with the largest plantations in the antebellum south. The rudimentary notions surrounding Lacob’s statements certainly have classist undertones.
I may come off as disparaging to some extent with my commentary but time and time again it appears that the so-called “self-made” seem impervious to owing any bit of their success to just plain luck. It would be hard to imagine that with such gratuitous happenstance came: a reasonable amount of drive and fortitude, copius amounts of disposable capital, access to people with exceptional and various levels of expertise, an unusually healthy team that actually likes playing together. To say that this incredible assortment of randomness should be considered a stroke a genius by capitalist design, when it is nothing short of an enormous stroke of luck is really and simply just caricature.
This is actually why we hope, we pray, we practice, we study, we learn, we earn, we support, we love, we hate, we fail, we try again, and we watch. This has very little to do with owners as their basic premise is to simply accommodate, facilitate and place your own faith into the business concern. They too are spectators, only from courtside or the skybox in all of this. That is what an investment boils down to. Forget about the bubbling frothy stock. The ingredients of the team that battles and plays against all odds is what gives the Golden State Warriors their winning flavor.
Steph Curry and his teammates seem more driven by the self-fulfiling prophecy of their shared commitment to becoming better as a team and humbly winning as a franchise. Curry contrasts with Mr. Lacob’s blustering who was quick in an apparent move to not jinx his team, and offered to clarify to Curry what he really meant by the statements he made to the magazine.
“Joe texted me right after the story was released, kind of explaining where he was coming from, what he meant to say, this and that,”
_Steph Curry interview with USA Today’s Sam Amick reported by mercurynews.com
…yeah this and that indeed.