Blue Jackets president: Cup run doesn’t mean cash windfall
…Priest, low key by nature and measured when he speaks, isn’t bragging about the progress the Jackets have made on the ice and the implications it has for the club’s business model. He’s pleased by all that, but he said the Blue Jackets still have work to do in attracting more fans – regular-season attendance ended at 15,543 per home game, up about 1,000 from the previous season but well below the franchise high of 18,136 in 2001-02. And it faces the task of selling corporate sponsorships in the battered economy .
It also has to be bittersweet for Priest and the rest of the Blue Jackets family to be making the playoff run without franchise founder and majority owner John H. McConnell, who died last April at age 84. Priest was a top aide to McConnell as president of JMac Inc., the McConnell family holding company. He remains a close adviser to current Blue Jackets majority owner John P. McConnell.