BRIGHTON, Mass – While news broke this summer that Bruins longtime owner Jeremy Jacobs was handing ownership of the Original Six hockey club over to his six children, both Jacobs and his son Charlie Jacobs assured that there would be no change to the current power structure at the top of the B’s organization.
Jacobs will still remain the powerful Chairman of the NHL Board of Governors and Charlie will still be the principal ownership presence day-to-day in Boston while spending four days a week working at TD Garden. So it’s business as usual.
“I believe he had a vision long ago about trying to keep our family business just that, a family business, and continue with myself and my siblings in professional management roles,” said Charlie Jacobs. “This has been a journey; this has been a long time. I do have two siblings that work out of our corporate headquarters in Buffalo.
“I spend a day a week in Buffalo and have for many years. I work Mondays out of there, and I come and start my work week here on Tuesdays. But as for a decision-making process, most of our decisions are collaborative, unless of course our chairman has a thought. [Then] we do what he tells us to do.”
There may have been some speculation that Jacobs’ retirement from the NHL Board of Governors could be forthcoming given that he was signing things over to his kids. But the 79-year-old confirmed to NBC Sports Boston on Tuesday that he plans on continuing in his current role overseeing the league, and that “the business of hockey” is one of the things that provides him with great joy at this point in his life.
“It’s up to them more than me. I enjoy it. I enjoy the business of hockey and I’m happy to be involved where I can contribute,” said Jacobs, following his press conference with Bruins management at B’s media day. “At some point I’m getting to the age where a younger mind might serve them better, but it’s up to them to decide. I don’t see it as a lot of work or difficult for me. I still the interaction around it.
“I enjoy the game itself, of course, but I really enjoy the business of the game. I enjoy the interaction with [NHL] commissioner [Gary Bettman]. When we went through labor unrest it was great working with all of those people together. You’ve got to recognize that it’s a competitive league and you maintain those relationships on a competitive basis. That’s important. I like that about hockey and I like about the labor agreement that we’re all working with the same dollars.”
Long after he does retire, of course, Jacobs will be remembered as one of the hard-line owners that got the salary cap instituted following the loss of the 2004-05 NHL season, a move that has in part allowed for the overall health and well-being of the National Hockey League at this point. But there’s no reason to write those retirement stories quiet yet for Jacobs as it doesn’t sound he’s going anywhere else anytime soon.
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