Repeatedly on this board, people have questioned why the Explorers don't have support in Great Falls. The Explorers don't have support in Great Falls because their owner (just like their previous owner) is a conman who should be behind bars.
"Tuckman also owes $550 to Universal Athletics for the team's blue uniforms, said Tim Preston, store manager.
Preston said former Explorers General Manager Ryan Acra came into the store at the beginning of the season, needing uniforms quickly. Acra told the clerk that Tuckman would be in at the beginning of the next week with a credit card. Universal had the uniforms to the team in about three days."
To be fair: Sorry. But this AIN'T the problem of Tuckman. Come back to reality, man. You can't go to a store and say "Well, next week a friend of mine will come to you and pay my 5,000 Dollar bill." This is just silly and dumb. And a businesmen who agrees to such a deal is definitely not a genius.
I'm confused, earlier this season, I was reading where Tuckman was waiting to hear from sources in southern States on getting money. Yet, in the recent articles, Tuckman claims that he is not responsible for payment for all of the Explorers sponsors. I agree that he owes them all and if he has the money, he has no reason not to pay since they are now HIS responsibility. The Arena has already said that once he pays the team can return. But I also have to wonder why the High Schools are letting them play when the Arena locked the team out?
Correct, the GM at the time was a rep of the organization and was acting for the organization. The organization owes the money.
I checked the boards today because of the article in the local paper here in Great Falls. I hate that I was mentioned in the article as I have wanted to distance myself from Mr. Tuckman and his business practices.
I cannot effectively speak on anything that has happened with the Explorers since I left at the end of November. What I can tell you is that last season, Joe Clark paid off all of the teams debts, all of the current debts are associated with the current season.
When the team changed hands, it was a transfer more than a 'sale'. Joe Clark knew he was in trouble with his three teams and he needed help. Therefore Joe transferred all of the assets of the team including computers, uniforms, mascot, furniture, and every other periferal item that the team and acquired over the past year, in return, Tuckman was to get the team on track. He told Joe and Dennis Truax that he was going to instantly put $100,000 into the team account and I was to get the team's momentum moving in the right direction. That sum would have put us in perfect position. The transfer happened but the money didn't come, therefore we had to start camp with players that would fly themselves in, we couldn't pay per diem and didn't have any cash for the necessities of camp. Coach Wedman and I went to our own pockets even though we hadn't been paid to try and keep the players positive. We lost out best player (Jamar Howard) and many others because of the situation.
We continually called Tuckman to ask for money so that we could continue our marketing efforts and produce the needed sales materials since at the time I was purchasing printer ink and paper. The phone bill had not been paid so we had no phone or fax machine. The momentum that we built over the summer had fallen off completely because we live in a small town and people could see what was happening.
The team's uniforms, ordered by Joe Clark, were not paid for in full so they were not available for our opening road trip. Tuckman told me to figure something out and he would pay for it. I went to Universal Athletic service and they came through in a pinch, even though a few of the uniforms were women's cut (no one knew that before now). I asked Tuckman before I made the order if it was okay to do so. He told me he would be in town on Monday and that he would pay for the uniforms, I paid to ship them to Yakima with my own dime.
The player housing deposit and first month's rent (October) was paid by Joe and Apex. When the change in ownership occured, the property management company wanted a new lease. I called Tuckman and told him the problem, he told me to "relax" as he always did even though he was the one who got worked up. He then told me to sign the leases Ryan Acra for West Coast Sports LLC, he told me to do it on the phone in front of Coach Wedman and an assistant. At this point, we though Mr. Tuckman would be a solid owner because the league said that he would be so I did it. On November 15, the apartment rental bills were not paid, the property management firm called Tuckman. He cussed at the woman who called him and said, "if Ryan Acra signed the lease for West Coast Sports, we should both pursue legal action."
That was when I gave my notice. Tuckman apologized like he often does and tried to talk me into staying, and even though he had missed two payrolls and only paid me a total of $250 for five weeks of work, he told me that I woud be making "six figures" when he took over management of the arena and brought in an "arena football team." Clearly this was a longshot since no one had been paid. He said that he couldn't put the money into the account because he was going through a divorce and his money was tied up.
When I left the team, I left all of the information on receivables, (there was close to $30,000) as well as all of the contract information. The files were solid and there were a number of deals on the table that could have been pretty lucrative, I have no idea where the ball was dropped but I can assure all of you that it wasn't dropped by Apex or Joe Clark (Butte has their own set of problems I am sure).
This isn't sour grapes at all, Tuckman cussed and screamed, but he never really personally bashed me. When I left I hoped that he could make things work even though I didn't like the signs. Some of the greatest guys in minor league basketball are still on his team like Marlyn Bryant and Mike Peeples, they deserve a better fate than what they are getting.
Mike Tuckman is a manipulator and a bad owner, and to be honest he knows it, he has never had a successful team and he probably never will. If he was honest and tried to work with people he would be more successful. The arena deal is $1500 a night, last year we had strong attendance and when the money was settled up we got a check from the arena and never a bill. He has run things poorly and the community and players have suffered. I hope the town can recover and basketball can come back and thrive like it started to last year and over the summer.
Joe Clark worked hard but had money issues, he took responsibility and tried to work it out, Mike Tuckman has money issues and blames anyone he can find. The article today was only the beginning, there are many more people out there who will be going after Mike Tuckman, including but not limited to your's truly.
Keep up the good work.