American glitterati just don't have the golden touch when it comes to owning athletic teams. That's something conservative radio maven Rush Limbaugh might consider as he makes a bid for the NFL's St. Louis Rams. Former NFL head coach Joe Gibbs runs a successful NASCAR team, but he's the exception. Here's our list of the Top 10 celebrity/high-profile sports owners who misfired.
10. Jon Bon Jovi, rock superstar
Majority owner of Arena Football League's Philadelphia Soul
Pros: Made playoffs in three of the Arena League’s five seasons, winning one championship. Legitimately went to games and stayed involved with the squad.
Cons: Arena Football League was livin' on a prayer … until it folded in 2009.
9. James Brown, CBS sportscaster
Minority ownership stake, Washington Nationals
Pros: The local boy chose the right horse in the competition to land ownership of the Nationals.
Cons: Bought into a putrid team in a beautiful ballpark.
8. Jay-Z, rap mogul
Minority owner, New Jersey Nets
Pros: Was in the bidding for the Nets from the beginning. Significant force behind push to move team from New Jersey to Brooklyn, his hometown.
Cons: Hired Lawrence Frank, the league's least intimidating coach. Overall record between 2005-06 and 2008-09: 158-170.
7. James Denton, "Mike the Plumber" of Desperate Housewives
Minority owner, Fullerton Flyers, semi-pro baseball team
Pros: Maybe "Desperate Housewives" star Eva Longoria will show up behind the home dugout?
Cons: When you're introduced in the press release announcing your purchase of the team as "who stars as Mike the Plumber," do you really even count as a celebrity?
6. Sen. Herb Kohl (D) of Wisconsin
Owner, Milwaukee Bucks
Pros: Bought the team in 1985 to make sure they stayed in Wisconsin. Didn’t sell the team to Michael Jordan in 2003, which turned out to be a stroke of genius.
Cons: Unfortunately, keeping them in Wisconsin is about all he did: the team is 867-1,028 under his ownership. Just traded star forward Richard Jefferson for journeymen.
5. Nick Lachey, former 98 Degrees heartthrob
Minority owner, Tacoma Rainiers, Triple A minor league baseball affiliate of the Seattle Mariners. Also created American Basketball Association team "The Hollywood Fame," which has since folded.
Pros: Combined record of 222-210 since LaChey's investment. Gave him something to do other than consider what’s left of him after breakup with Jessica Simpson.
Cons: Zero playoff appearances. Oh, and the only thing that folded faster than the "Fame" was LaChey's solo career.
4. Michael Jordan, basketball icon; Nelly, rapper
Minority owners, Charlotte Bobcats,
Pros: Get to hang out with BET owner Bob Johnson … for now.
Cons: Jordan drafted an 11th man (on a good day) in Adam Morrison with the No. 3 pick in 2006 and the hefty Sean May with the 13th pick in 2005. Nelly chose to become a co-owner of a team led by Jordan, who didn't exactly tear it up in Washington, D.C. Team has gone 144-266 in its five years in existence.
3. David Letterman, talk show host
Owner, Rahal Letterman Racing
Pros: One Indianapolis 500 championship (Buddy Rice in 2004) and 20 victories in a decade of racing. Gave Danica Patrick her start.
Cons: Going through a rough patch with infidelity admission. Almost missed 2009 racing season because of sponsor troubles.
2. Serena and Venus Williams, tennis pros; Marc Antony, Gloria Estefan, Jimmy Buffett , singers
Minority owners, Miami Dolphins
Pros: All Floridians by residence or by devotion. Buffett even wrote the team a song.
Cons: Makes majority owner have butterflies, which is never good. After a 1-15 season in 2007, the Dolphins shocked the world with an 11-5 rebound in 2008 and a trip to the playoffs. After adding this glittering cast to the owner's box? Toppled to 1-3 so far this year.
1. Wayne Gretzky, hockey legend
Majority owner, Phoenix Coyotes
Pros: He is The Great One. Gretzky drafted Peter Mueller and Kyle Turris, two rising stars.
Cons: Gretzky was so Great, in fact, that he quit because he felt nobody would be willing to tell him to step down after “leading” the team to a 143-161-24 record over four seasons. Team is currently bankrupt and a judge recently denied an offer to buy it because it was “unfair” to Gretzky and co-owner Jerry Moyes.
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