Hearne: Armstrong Finally Quits Livestrong, Ball in Sporting’s Court

Like I told you last summer, Lance Armstrong had to go, now he finally has…

There’s no way Sporting Kansas City – having foolishly embraced the seven time Tour de France winner in the middle of his high profile fall from grace – could continue with its Livestrong stadium branding if Armstrong continued on with the cancer charity.

Here’s what I said in August; “Beleaguered cyclist Lance Armstrong needs to fall on his sword and divorce himself from the organization that bears his name, The Lance Armstrong Foundation. The degree of difficulty: extreme. The importance doing so (and quickly): vital.”

But true to Armstrong’s sleazy form, it was far from quick.

The most disgraced sports figure in a lifetime continues to refuse to own up to his now proven drug cheating ways despite a mountain of evidence. Nor was he decent enough to step down from Livestrong, the charity he founded and built with $7 million in ill-gotten gains.

Speaking of which, as recently as last month Armstrong – who until recently remained on Livestrong’s board after stepping down as chairman – stood center stage at the organization’s 15th anniversary gala and got a standing oh from the faithful.

Never mind that celebrity guests Robin Williams, Matthew McConaughey and Norah Jones either no-showed or skipped the red carpet out front and slipped in the back way to avoid being publicly associated with Armstrong.

“It’s been an interesting couple of weeks,” he told the crowd. Interesting.

Why it took Livestrong so long to cut Armstrong loose is an unfortunate mystery.

Now it’s up to Sporting to decide if they wish to continue their shaky voyage aboard cancer’s Titanic and hope for the best…Or make a clean break and affiliate with another charity not harnessed to Armstrong’s name and ruined rep.

They’ve got an out, a mulligan if you will. But I’ll guarantee you if Sporting had it to do over, the name Livestrong would not be affixed to the outside of the local soccer team’s spanking new home.

Armstrong’s finally gone now it remains to be seen how his charity will fare.




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4 Responses to Hearne: Armstrong Finally Quits Livestrong, Ball in Sporting’s Court

  1. Rick Nichols says:

    As long as Sporting’s ownership group continues to field a good and potentially championship team, the fans will continue to flock to the stadium to watch “the beautiful game” regardless of what the big neon sign on the outside wall says. Most people know someone whose life has been touched by cancer in one way or another, so this cause stands to remain a popular one regardless of which celebrities, flawed or seemingly perfect, choose to be associated with it. Hey, if nothing else the ownership group could conduct a survey of the season ticket holders (I used to be one) and see what they have to say about the matter, then go from there. At least for the time being I see no harm in leaving the big neon sign in place and maintaining the existing relationship with Livestrong.

    • admin says:

      That’s fair and plenty of people probably see it your way.

      Now that Lance has finally pulled the plug, Livestrong can go forward. The only question being, have they imbedded themselves in the public conscience enough to distance themselves from Lance and, you know, stay strong?

  2. harley says:

    it doesnt say “lance armstrong” livestrong park.
    lance has left…livestrong will continue…
    why change it…livestrong is much bigger than lance and will
    continue the fight against cancer. end of story.
    mda will continue without jerry lewis….st. judes continues without
    danny thomas…
    livestrong is a movement…not one man. get over it!

  3. Gully says:

    You know it’s a great issue when Hearne and Tony are on the same soapbox. And no one cares. There’ll be a lot of emergency room bills as these two throw out their shoulders patting themselves on the back.

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