More Men Behaving Badly in the NHL

Ducks GM and president Bob Murray’s monstrous behavior under investigation

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There’s no award for being a bad boss, Bob.
There’s no award for being a bad boss, Bob.
Illustration: Getty Images

It’ll be another banner day for the NHL when whatever story is waiting about Anaheim GM and president Bob Murray drops.

The Ducks put Murray on administrative leave as a preemptive strike before they do their own investigation. The L.A. Times outlines your usual unhinged exec, screaming at everyone and creating an atmosphere where everyone is terrified of even passing gas. We’ll know more in the coming days.

It’s hard to believe that a man so stable and mature that he nearly decaptitated a woman while hurling a chair after the Ducks lost a playoff game could create such a toxic workplace environment. Also, he got out of that lawsuit not because anyone disputed he hit that woman with a chair he threw, but because of a technicality.


It’s another step for sports as it, intentionally or unintentionally, comes to the conclusion that yelling and intimidating aren’t real marks of leadership. Less and less are we seeing coaches scream and stomp on the bench or sidelines at their players. Mostly because it’s been well proven that players have far more power over a coach when they want to wield it. It applies to the front offices as well.

Part of the reason the Blackhawks launched themselves into the morass they currently find themselves in is because of the terror that former president John McDonough generated throughout the offices. McDonough was legendary for treating his employees like dung on his shoe, which was actually the only thing he was good at. You can be sure that in 2010, when McDonough told the rest of the Hawks staff that he would take care of it, none of the others dared cross him. But it certainly wasn’t because McDonough had all the answers, or any of them as it turned out.


Anyone who is in a position of power or authority whose first instinct is to yell and belittle and berate, it is a sure sign of insecurity and not knowledge. It’s the base and last resort of someone who probably knows they don’t belong there and is doing their best to keep anyone from finding that out. It’s a complete lack of ideas or empathy. And more and more places are finding that out. Looks like Anaheim will be next.