clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

UPDATED 3/16: The Blues need to step up for their Enterprise Center employees

New, comments

They did the right thing.

NHL: San Jose Sharks at St. Louis Blues Scott Kane-USA TODAY Sports

UPDATE: The Blues did, in fact, step up. Thank you to the team, Tom Stillman, Alex Pietrangelo, Andy Frisella, and local donors for taking care of your employees.

People say fans make the sports team run. I’ll say don’t forget about the people who take care of fans to enliven their overall experience.

The St. Louis Blues could play like crap, which they don’t often do, but they have produced their fair share of disappointment. On those unfortunate nights, the people who work the concession stands and keep the arena clean and function well make the night seem not as bad. They bust their ass, day in and game out. They are there long before the fans and players get going, and stay long after the drunken hockey fan has stumbled into his front door from the corner pub.

With the Coronavirus sweeping the nation, sports have been put out of business faster than a start-up restaurant in a small town. The NHL has put the regular season on pause, with most of the industry thinking it could be at least two weeks before things get going again. Arenas are empty and useless with a container of Clorox wipes being more of a hot commodity than front row seats. While the precaution is legit and people should heighten their awareness about a deadly pandemic, there’s collateral damage in certain areas.

The Enterprise Center employees are without a job, innocent casualties in an unstoppable medical emergency. The Blues had five home games left, including today’s proposed match-up with the Ottawa Senators. Those employees are out of luck instantly, dumbfounded by coincidence. They just lost a paycheck and may not be able to pay their bills.

Please save me the “they should have saved” rhetoric, because I’ll immediately ask you to relinquish your Stella Artois due to those statements. Most of the population lives paycheck to paycheck, scrapping by with the middle of them. Don’t take a guess at other people’s situation and status. Save that crap for your own mind.

Look around the world of sports and you see teams starting to look out for their workers. The Chicago Blackhawks may house a team and fanbase that carries a punchable face, but that doesn’t mean their hearts aren’t pure. The team announced on Saturday they were going to come to their workers’ aid during the timeout.

Andy Frisella, a local health and fitness mogul who happens to be a multi-millionaire entrepreneur who built his empire through social media, pledged 100K to help the Enterprise Center workers. Just a huge guy with a big career who could fit into a “Fast and Furious” henchmen squad wants to toss over that cash to help strangers out.

While I love Andy’s heart and passion, the Blues need to step up here. They can match his donation or quadruple it. Follow the Blackhawks’ lead and take care of your people. This has little to do with politics and regulations, and everything to do with right and wrong. The Enterprise workers make the in-game experience a consistent pleasure, never mind the result of the game. It’s hard work and shouldn’t be taken away due to nature’s cruel twist.

Step up. Don’t let Andy do it alone. Don’t give me this garbage about a company not being liable for this sort of event. Just save it. There wouldn’t be a company without workers like this. There’d be no action. Look outside the game. Apple is shutting its North American stores down during this social distancing moment in time. Yes, Apple is a very successful billion dollar agency, but that doesn’t mean they had to do what they did. The Blues don’t have IPhone money, but they need to act here.

Set up a fund for the workers while the games are cancelled. Take care of the people who know how to get the job done, so when the league gives teams the green light again, you don’t have to hire newbies right before the playoffs begin.

Look, you could make a better argument to me about fracturing Pride Night than simply stepping forward for your employees during the rare condition that not cancels major sporting events.

Do the right thing, Tom Stillman and company.