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Longtime Wizards owner Abe Pollin has passed

The only majority owner in the history of the Washington Wizards died on Tuesday at age 85. The Wizards just released a statement:

Washington, D.C. - Washington Sports & Entertainment Chairman Abe Pollin passed away earlier today. Further details will be released through Washington Sports & Entertainment as they become available. The Pollin family asks that their privacy be respected in this difficult time.


By Michael Lee  |  November 24, 2009; 3:58 PM ET
 
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Next: Reactions to Pollin's death [Updated]

Comments

This is a very sad moment in DC sports. Mr Pollin was a good man who did a lot for this city and he will be missed. Hopefully the Wiz can come together to play this season in his honor.

Posted by: bigcountry22 | November 24, 2009 4:05 PM | Report abuse

So this is how it ends for Mr. Pollin as he died today. A team bickering over egos and battling over playing time while he was battling for his life. Best regards to the Pollin family.

Posted by: ptp23 | November 24, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Abe Pollin was a very good man who did indeed give back more to the world than he took. That's the true measure of someone's life: Did they give or did they take? He gave.

Thank you Mr. Pollin.

Posted by: SteveMG | November 24, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

it might sound funny coming from me but lets not use this situation to take shots at guys on the team, but to honor and respect the family and friends of a man who's done more for my hometown than a lot of people even aspired to.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 24, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

".....would even aspire to do" i think that fixes it.

rest in peace to abe polin. the "cheap abe" commentary will be laid to rest as well. he was a good man and a decent owner. the dc area will definitely miss one of its most beloved philanthopists.

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 24, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 24, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Rest in peace, Mr. Pollin. You were a great owner and a great human being. Too bad your team couldn't have given you one more thrilling season while you were still here.

Posted by: paulstutz14 | November 24, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

Washington Wizards owner Abe Pollin dies at 85 -WAPO

The injuries continue to mount. Unfortunately this one could be career ending.
RIP

Posted by: midlevex | November 24, 2009 4:13 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe...thanks for bringing the only NBA championship to Washington DC

Posted by: Crunkenstein | November 24, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe.

Posted by: fourteenth_and_otis | November 24, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Rest In Peace, Abe

I have been a Bullets/Wizards fan since I was born. I have stuck through with this team through the good and bad....mostly bad but hey they are my team. This is truly a sad day. One of the great humanitarians of all time. May God rest his soul.

Posted by: natsfan007 | November 24, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe Pollin.

Posted by: WilliamCarr | November 24, 2009 4:24 PM | Report abuse

Rest in peace, Mr. Pollin. A wonderful Washingtonian.

Posted by: Kev29 | November 24, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe.

Hopefully this will provide a wake up call to the team and provide a rallying point to bring them together.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 24, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Rest in peace, Abe.

Posted by: J-Wiz | November 24, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

He was a good man. He built that arena with his own money, and look what it did for that entire neighborhood. I always had his back, even when he fired Jordan, 'cause I knew what he had done for the city over his entire career. He will be sorely missed. It would have been great to see him get another title.

Posted by: frankjomama | November 24, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe.

Hopefully we change the name back now.

Posted by: prescrunk | November 24, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Abe took his good fortune and tried to let the people of the DC area feel apart of it.

A good man.

RIP

Posted by: millineumman | November 24, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe. What a loss for the team and the city.

Posted by: tundey | November 24, 2009 4:35 PM | Report abuse


Dan Snyder should read this to learn what a good owner looks like.

Posted by: noups | November 24, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe...thanks for bringing the only NBA championship to Washington DC

Posted by: Crunkenstein | November 24, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for bringing the NBA to Washington DC.

Posted by: rbpalmer | November 24, 2009 4:39 PM | Report abuse

I wonder who will take over the team now. I hope he has a successor already identified and the Wizards don't fall into the hands of another Dan Snyder. Will Ted Leonsis take over?

Posted by: tundey | November 24, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Leonsis has the first shot at buying Abe's share of Lincoln Holdings. Not sure what that means ultimately as it has been a while.

Posted by: usiel3 | November 24, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

It's a very sad day for Washington. Abe Pollin, thanks for the amazing things you did for DC. You will certainly be missed. My prayers are with the family.

Posted by: gdiddy7 | November 24, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

^ DC_Man88

Posted by: prescrunk | November 24, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe. My condolences to your family.

Posted by: thecomedian1 | November 24, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Win it for the man tonight. Shut up and play hard like you know should.

Posted by: Blurred | November 24, 2009 4:47 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe

Posted by: malujoker | November 24, 2009 4:53 PM | Report abuse

Rest in Peace, Mr. Pollin. You'll be missed.

Posted by: pjkiger1 | November 24, 2009 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Feel heart broken about his death. Abe was a good man and he deserved better. Enough said.

Posted by: frediemac1 | November 24, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

Rest in Peace Abe. Thank you for the commitment to the city and our team. You have left your mark in DC...one that won't be forgotten. My prayers go out to you and your family.

Posted by: nurse1234 | November 24, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Damn! I hoped he would win another before he passed! RIP Mr. Pollin, thanks for bringing basketball to DC.

Posted by: Gooddad | November 24, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

God bless Mr. Pollin as we were blessed to have him as a citizen of this great city Washington, DC.

Posted by: hessone | November 24, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

From Baltimore Sun
With his death, a group led by longtime AOL executive Ted Leonsis is poised to take ownership of a Washington-area sports empire that began when Pollin purchased the Baltimore Bullets in 1964.

Leonsis previously bought two of Pollin's teams -- the NHL's Capitals in 1999 and the WNBA's Mystics in 2005 -- and secured the right of first refusal to buy the rest of Pollin's Washington Sports and Entertainment holdings -- including the Wizards, Verizon Center and Washington-Baltimore TicketMaster -- when Pollin retired or died.

Posted by: ptp23 | November 24, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse

Abe Pollin was a good man who loved Washington DC. He's done a lot for the city. He was a great philanthropist and will be sorely missed. My condolences to the family. Rest in Peace, Abe.

Posted by: original2cents | November 24, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Rest in peace, Mr. Pollin.

Posted by: VeCente115 | November 24, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr. Pollin,
YOU are the main reason basketball is even halfway relevant in the nation's capital.

Posted by: kman2 | November 24, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

God bless Mr. Pollin, you where a great man. You will never be forgotten.

Maybe this means no more "cheap Abe" post from bulletsfan78, maybe?

Posted by: zxhoya | November 24, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

as kal has previously stated the wiz are pro ball players and should not need Abe's death as motivation to win games.
Rip Abe, hopefully your team honors you tonight by earning their paychecks.

that kind of "motivation/aggression" is of the selfishly motivated variety, the kind where a guy goes out more focused on looking to prove something or fulfill a personal goal instead of focusing on the team goal of winning. Given recent events/comments, that's exactly the kind of "motivation/aggression" they don't need.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 24, 2009 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: lilhollywood10 | November 24, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

Abe Pollin was a fine sportsman, a great philanthropist and a true Washingtonian.

My fondest memory of Abe goes back to US Airways Arena when the Wizards rose up to beat a tough foe at the buzzer, and Abe literally jumped out and started dancing on the court with Rex Chapman. He was a man who understood the simple pure joy of an unexpected triumph. I wish he was still around to see a few more such victories.

My condolences to Irene Pollin, who has also done so much for so many worthy causes, and the family.

I hope that the team Abe built will honor his memory with a rededicated effort to make this a successful season.

Posted by: khrabb | November 24, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse


Abe created a dream for many, whether in our sports venues or with the revitalization of this community. He will be sorely missed, but he leaves a legacy that will enrich us for many years to come.

That great hope for a second championship kept Abe going, and I'm so sorry he didn't live to see that dream come true. Maybe these will Wizards take it to heart, and win one for Abe Pollin, a dedicated champion of Washington, D.C.

This should be his championship year.

Posted by: zinger1 | November 24, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr. Pollin

Posted by: arizona4 | November 24, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr. Pollin - you were a great Washingtonian.

Posted by: wizfan89 | November 24, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

"^ DC_Man88

Posted by: prescrunk | November 24, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse "

WTF?

I hope Leonsis can afford the team. It's too bad Abe's sons were not interested in inheriting the franchise.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 24, 2009 5:44 PM | Report abuse

A giant in the history of Washington sports, Abe Pollin's philanthropic work is perhaps his most enduring legacy. Before the Redskins won any Super Bowls, his Bullets won the first major sports championship for this city in most of our lifetimes (Bullets '78). He was an old school owner and businessman who was loyal to a fault. Hopefully his beloved Wizards (Bullets) will drop their childish internal bickering and honor him w/ an inspired performance tonight. RIP!

Posted by: randysbailin | November 24, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

My condolences to Abe’s family and friends. The Bullets/Wizards are the only NBA team I’ve ever been a fan of and Abe has always owned the team.

SteveMG said it better than I can…

Abe Pollin was a very good man who did indeed give back more to the world than he took. That's the true measure of someone's life: Did they give or did they take? He gave.

Thank you Mr. Pollin.

Posted by: SteveMG | November 24, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | November 24, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

lilhollywood10, nice job of missing the point. There's nothing wrong with the team being inspired emotionally, as a group, to honor Pollin's memory in a positive way. That's a completely different thing than a couple of players being selfishly motivated by the desire to "prove something" to the other team's coach for some imagined snub that's years a in the past.

Posted by: kalo_rama | November 24, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe, you were a good kind-hearted man.

I hope the team gets a little bit more centered and plays with joy and appreciation for their game tonight. That's what the old man would have wanted. I'm sure AJ will play like that tonight.

Posted by: SportzWiz | November 24, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm sure EJ will be equally inspired to win one for Abe too...and for himself.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | November 24, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

God rest his soul.

He made my city a better place to live.

Posted by: elfreako | November 24, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

You should not speak ill of the dead, so I will not. My condolences to his family; there is no dispute he put family first and I am sorry for their loss.

Does this now mean that Ted Leonsis will take over the Wizards? And not to be callous, but isn't that the real story to DC sports fans?

Posted by: gbooksdc | November 24, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr. Pollin...

You were a great owner. I used to love to go to the Cap Center to see the Bullets. You will never be replaced. You had integrity which is hard to find in pro sports today.

I am sad your last days were seeing this disapointing team, and a team that apparently can't get along due to egos. It had to break your heart.

It has been great to root for a team that put character above all else. A team you could truely be proud to root for. The respect you showed for Wes Unseld is rare today. Changing the name of the team was what you felt was the right thing to do. Bringing the team to the city was what you thought was the right thing.

I wish the fans had appreciated you more. Sometimes you don't realize what you have until it's gone.

Posted by: Darnell1 | November 24, 2009 6:10 PM | Report abuse

You should not speak ill of the dead, so I will not. My condolences to his family; there is no dispute he put family first and I am sorry for their loss.

Does this now mean that Ted Leonsis will take over the Wizards? And not to be callous, but isn't that the real story to DC sports fans?

Posted by: gbooksdc

TOTALLY CALLOUS remark! And so inappropriate.

Posted by: Lisa_R | November 24, 2009 6:11 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr.Pollin, Thanks for your all your hard work for all people in the DMV. You will be missed

Posted by: dsquare | November 24, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Condolences to the Pollin family. He brought a lot of joy to a lot of people.

Ironies abound as this happens the day that EJ returns, the team is in crisis and while Skins are craving for an owner like Pollin.

The "big 3" could use this to bury the hatchet and re-commit themselves to the team and to one another, not just tonight but for the rest of the season. the character of this team will be revealed in the next week. Either it turns around now or it never will.

BmoreRev

Posted by: stanlong23 | November 24, 2009 6:15 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe and sincerest condolences to the Pollin family. Thank you for everything you did for this community. You will be missed.

Posted by: regis429 | November 24, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr. Pollin and Family. No one knows the formula of what a Champion is, but for sure, you were one, indeed.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | November 24, 2009 6:40 PM | Report abuse

Condolences too the Pollin family.
The DC area lost a class act.

Posted by: VBFan | November 24, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

My condolences to the Pollin Family. RIP. The ' 78 Bullets were a magical part of my teen years. Thanks for that.

Posted by: rusty6 | November 24, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

A great man has left us today, however he will never be forgotten. Rest in peace Mr. Pollin.

Posted by: wagster69 | November 24, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

The greatest Washingtonian in my lifetime.
He really help build 21st Century DC as we know it.
God Bless AP.
Truly Saint Pollin. No1 can ever accuse him of not caring for this city & its people.

Posted by: Rocc00 | November 24, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

RIP Abe. Thank you for your work to help others. That is always the sign of a great human being.

Posted by: DrWho2 | November 24, 2009 8:41 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr Pollin - thanks for a great run with your class and integrity. you showed that owning a sports team doesn't have to be "just a business". the fat lady sings a sad song tonight.

Posted by: rm0659 | November 24, 2009 10:57 PM | Report abuse

RIP Mr Pollin you were a great man. The city of DC owes you a great deal of graditude. God bless your family.

Posted by: rskinz34 | November 24, 2009 11:20 PM | Report abuse

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