Good point. there are some key differences.
The Tainui were joint owners with Boyle and Lowe. Both expected more from the other than they got. Things were terrible from the start.
The club was in danger of collapsing and was saved by Lowe approaching Eric Watson in the toilets at Ellerslie.
Lowe was panicking, the NRL were never going to let us go down, but they never let Lowe know that.
On field was shite, but that belied a very good coach grooming a great young team. Daniel Anderson was a genuine lucky bastard.
That's really interesting, I didn't know it was a meeting in the toilets at Ellerslie. I'd been meaning to read a book from around that time called Beleaguered about the turmoil of the first 6 years of the clubs existence but never got around to picking up a copy. If I stumble across a copy I might actually give it a read. Have you?
I think it was David Moffatt that saved us back then. There was a strategic move to cut the comp down to 14 teams for the 2000 season which became a PR disaster in NSW and dropping a failing Warriors would have been a simple move to either unbolt one of the infighting mergers or to reinstate the Rabbitohs with the mass protests happening at Redfern, while still sticking with 14 teams for 2001 and beyond. The Warriors had no real history back then so could have gone the same way of the Western Reds and South Queensland Crushers without a whimper.
But it was Moffatts ties to NZ sport and his time as CEO of NZ Rugby where he was able to see the strategic importance of keeping a NZ interest in the professional Aussie comp. He exercised massive patience when the license issue was dragging out for the club. Had there been a different CEO at the time it would have been very interesting. I was a pretty naïve teenager back then so that's how I saw it at the time, but someone else out there might have differing facts.
These days with the lucrative television rights and the Warriors brand now deeply ingrained with a significant history for NZ followers there is now no chance the club would ever cease to exist. Introducing a second club though at this time seems like a very risky move as it just doesn't feel like we have the population outside of Auckland to sustain it, Wellington appears the only somewhat realistic option but the Phoenix are far from a roaring success in the football. And Auckland isn't big enough to have two NRL teams, particularly with the diabolical stadium situation at the moment. Maybe one day, but as we've seen with the struggles of the Dolphins a second NZ based club feels light years away at this time.