- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 22, 2003


Declan Bolger, the Washington Capitals’ senior vice president of business operations, is leaving to become chief marketing officer of the NBA’s Portland Trail Blazers.

Bolger, a key early hire by Caps owner Ted Leonsis in July 1999, is credited for helping resurrect the team’s season-ticket base from less than 3,000 to about 12,000 in 2002 as a franchise attendance record was set that year.

Since the Caps made yet another early-round playoff stumble six months ago, the season ticket base has retreated to about 10,000. But under Bolger, the Caps also made significant advancements in game presentation, merchandising and Internet outreach.

Bolger, who also has worked for the Pittsburgh Pirates and Florida Panthers, will join new Blazers team president Steve Patterson as that team tries to rebuild its badly sullied image after several years marked by numerous player arrests.

“This was really something out of the blue,” Bolger said. “But this is a next step, a bigger and better opportunity that seems to make sense.”

Stephanie Boyer, the Caps’ director of community relations, left the team earlier this month to take a similar position with the Philadelphia Flyers.

Eric Fisher

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