Sports

The Worst Team Owners of All Time 

Blake Edwards
Originally by
Updated June 14, 2019 3.8k votes 597 voters 15.1k views 48 items

List Rules Any horrible owner in any sport ever

The worst team owners of all time are the rich and powerful men and women who were the most hated by fans, the least successful or even the most scandalous of their time. These football, basketball, hockey and baseball team owners are some of the worst ever, so much so that decades after these entrepreneurs have left these teams, fans still talk of the damage that these awful owners did.

Many of these owners were involved with professional sports teams for several years but unfortunately many of these years were some of the worst ever for the teams. In more than 20 years owning the Cincinnati Bengals in the NFL, Mike Brown's team only reached the playoffs twice. Michael Jordan's Charlotte Bobcats tallied the worst record in the history of the NBA in the shortened 2011-12 season, winning just seven games and putting him up for the worst NBA executive of all time award.

But it's not just having a losing team that makes an owner one of the worst ever. Some owners were notorious about treating people badly or making unpopular decisions. Arnold Johnson, who moved the MLB Athletics franchise from Philadelphia to Kansas City, sold all of his good players out of greed. Marge Schott, owner of the Cincinnati Reds from 1984 to 1999, famously once said "Hitler wasn't so bad." No one will ever forgive Harry Frazee, owner of the Boston Red Sox from 1916 to 1923, for selling Babe Ruth so he could finance more Broadway plays.

If that isn't bad enough, some owners were straight up criminal in their actions. Harold Ballard, involved with the Toronto Maple Leafs from 1961 to 1990, was convicted on 47 charges including fraud, theft and tax evasion leading to a three-year stay in prison.

Whether these terrible team owners just didn't have a clue and the franchise suffered because of it or if the owners were more scandalous, each of these team owners did something or another to earn them the distinction of being one of the worst team owners of all time. Have an owner you despise that we missed? Add it and vote for which owners you think are the best below!
list ordered by
1
Art Modell is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Art Modell
Cleveland Browns and Baltimore Ravens
2
Jeffrey Loria is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 79
Montreal Expos and Miami Marlins
3
Donald Sterling is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 86
4
Fred Wilpon is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 83
New York Mets
5
Daniel Snyder is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Age: 54
Washington Redskins
6
Marge Schott is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Marge Schott
Cincinnati Reds
7
Frank McCourt is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 66
Los Angeles Dodgers
8
James L. Dolan is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
muzziac added Age: 63
New York Knicks
9
Peter Angelos is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 90
Baltimore Orioles
10
Michael Jordan is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 56
Charlotte Bobcats
11
Maloof family is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added
Sacramento Kings
12
Mike Brown is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 84
Cincinnati Bengals
13
Tribune Media is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added
Chicago Cubs
14
Charles Wang is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 75
New York Islanders
15
Robert Nutting is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Dlamm added Robert Nutting Age: 57

Pittsburgh Pirates

16
Robert Irsay is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
muzziac added Dec. at 74 (1923-1997)
Baltimore Colts
17
Charles Comisky is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Charles Comisky
Chicago White Sox
18
Harry Frazee is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Harry Frazee
Boston Red Sox
19
Bill Bidwill is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 88
Arizona Cardinals
20
Dean Spanos is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
blackandsilver1904 added Dean Spanos
21
Jerry Reinsdorf is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
muzziac added Age: 83
Chicago Bulls, Chicago White Sox
22
Stan Kroenke is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
thebapper added Age: 72
St. Louis Rams, Denver Nuggets, Arsenal
23
Walter O'Malley is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
muzziac added Walter O'Malley
Brooklyn Dodgers
24
Donald Trump is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Rickster79 added Donald Trump Age: USFL New Jersey Generals
25
Lewis Wolff is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Worst Team Owners of All Time
Blake Edwards added Age: 84
Oakland Athletics