Inside the Mind of “The Chairman”

Love him or hate him, chances are you know who Ed Snider is and what he hasn't brought the fans on Philadelphia in 35 years.

The man behind the Flyers and Sixers, as well as their former and current homes, sat down with Larry Kane on Friday for a candid conversation about what it's like to be "The Chairman."

Listen to the whole converstation here.

But don't think this was an interview -- it was more like a sit down chat.

There was no talk about any pending Sixers draft moves or Snider's insight about controversial new Flyers goalie Ray Emery.

Rather, it sounded more like a goodbye speech.

Snider was constantly on the defensive, as exiting leaders tend to do.

“Everyone talks about the two Cups and we haven’t won a Cup in all these years. And believe me, no one hurts more than I do. Because we haven’t had the Cup, I’ve been working hard, all of our people have been working hard, and we just haven’t crossed that threshold.”

Thing is, this response came after Kane pointed out that Snider’s record of 1,812 wins, 1,360 losses and 457 ties, was one of the best for an owner in the history of the NHL.

Nothing hard, nothing negative. But it’s not the last defensive comment Snider would make. 

“It’s hard, it’s very hard, but I think our fans, while some may be naysayer’s because we haven’t won the Cup in so long, I think our fans appreciate the excitement we’ve created and we have succeeded to a degree. We haven’t won the Cup, but we’ve been in the hunt for a long time,” Snider added.

Snider also delivers a nice “Wait, what?” moment in the sit-down. He told Kane that he was wrong in self-financing the Wachovia Center -- after Kane set him up perfectly for a “peoples-owner” moment.

Kane asked Snider if it was a good feeling financing his own stadium. All Snider had to do was say ‘Yes, it was. I’m proud that I could bring this to the city.” Home run, next question.

But instead he said this:

“It is a good feeling, but sometimes I feel like maybe I shouldn’t have done it, because when you look at all the other facilities in the state of Pennsylvania they’ve all had massive infusion of capital from the state and the city. Not only here, but in Pittsburgh including an arena that is being built for the Penguins right now by whoever got the gambling license there.”

So essentially if Snider could go back in time, it seems that he would rather have the common person pay for the stadium he obviously could afford.


But the most bizarre quote came at the end of the interview. Kane asked Snider if there were something he would do differently given the chance (besides throwing a multi-million dollar stadium on the city, of course). While this is a pretty standard journalistic question, Kane made a point to acknowledge that Snider isn’t going anywhere.

“If you could do anything differently, and this is not an end-career because we know you’re going to be here a long time and you’re a forward looking person, what would you have done differently in your time?” Kane asked.

"In your time?"

Snider’s still in charge.


Does Mr. Kane know something we don’t?

It sure seems like it.

It’s Snider’s closing remark that seals the deal.    

“You know, basically I’m really very happy with my life and what’s happened. I can’t really think of anything I’d do differently. But I wish we had more championships,” Snider answered.

Now if that’s not a by-the-book good-bye, nothing is. 

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