Dennis Mannion Rumors
Tellem will not be directly involved with the Pistons’ basketball side — coach Stan Van Gundy will still have final say over personnel. He will be one of three people who report directly to Gores, along with Van Gundy and CEO Dennis Mannion. And his duties will run the gamut from looking at improvements to the Palace, to improving the team’s footprint in Detroit, to potentially working on the creation of a regional sports network. In switching careers, Tellem is leaving his position at Wasserman Media Group, where he headed the agency’s basketball division, and was considered the most powerful agent in basketball. He represented 42 NBA players — almost 10 percent of all the players in the league, who made more than $324 million this season in salary — and 12 All-Stars.
The Grand Rapids Drive won’t have a winning season on the court, but management of parent company Detroit Pistons are pleased with the first-year relationship with the NBA Development League team. “This first year our primary goal was creating a structure that matches our structure,” said Dennis Mannion, president & CEO of Palace Sports and Entertainment and the Detroit Pistons. “…We’re getting better at it. We have a monthly call in to go over things and with what Steve (Ybarra, the lead owner of the Drive) has learned it will help him so much in support and planning for next year.”
The most expensive, eye-popping and perhaps impressive of all renovations done to The Palace under owner Tom Gores awaits Detroit Pistons fans Saturday night. A new state-of-the-art scoreboard hangs in the middle of the arena and although it’s been in use during the preseason, Saturday’s home opener against the Brooklyn Nets is when many fans will get their first glimpse of the latest renovation to the building. Calling it a scoreboard is actually a huge understatement. “People hear about it, ‘Yeah, yeah you’ve got a scoreboard,” said Dennis Mannion, president of Palace Sports & Entertainment. “Then they walk into the seating bowl and the usual expression is ‘Oh my. Wow. Oh my.’ They’re overwhelmed.
Palace Sports & Entertainment put the eight days between Pistons home games to good use. The corporation dedicated the Matt Dobek Press Room before Sunday’s game against the Boston Celtics to honor the late Pistons vice president of public relations. More than 10 members of Dobek’s family were on hand to watch the ceremony featuring comments from Pistons president of basketball operations Joe Dumars, Palace president Dennis Mannion and longtime NBA public relations executive Brian McIntyre. Pistons play-by-play announcer George Blaha presided.
Mannion said Tuesday there have been discussions about offering the space as part of a package with a high-end sponsor. “The ilk of sponsor that you could attract is typically very big consumer marketers, and they help you with your brand,” Mannion said. “So I think we are doing an OK job here in the Detroit metro area with the Pistons brand, (but) there are sponsors out there that can take you to a whole new level and other markets, and that’s exciting.”
He will oversee all business operations — including sales, marketing, finance and administration — while Joe Dumars will continue in his role as the head of Pistons basketball operations. “Dennis is very well qualified and will bring a fresh perspective to the organization,” Tom Gores, new owner of the Pistons and Palace Sports & Entertainment, said in a prepared statement. “He is an innovative guy and he shares our visions of creating the best possible experience for our fans. “He also shares our core values of hard work and commitment to the community. Dennis knows what it takes to succeed at a high level and we are excited to have him on board.”