BRISTOL - Nearly three months after suffering a late collapse that caused the team to miss the FCBL playoffs, the Bristol Blues made two huge changes at the top of the organization. General manager Rick Muntean and manager Pat Riley both will not return to the team next season.
“It was just time for a change,” Blues owner Elliot Scheiner said. “It’s nothing against either of these guys. They are friends. We just had a very bad season. We needed a change.”
Muntean was the general manager for the Blues in both of the team’s two seasons in existence, helping to put together the squad that reached the FCBL championship series in the Blues’ first season.
Riley took over as manager during the 2015 season after then-manager Barry Lyons was fired. He was the Blues’ manager through the 2016 campaign.
The Blues’ second season did not go as well as the first, as the Blues went 23-32, losing their final five games and six of their last seven to miss the playoffs by one game.
According to Scheiner, the Blues’ poor performance in 2016 was the main reason why the organization decided to move on from its general manager and manager.
“If you take a look at other clubs, some teams automatically change their general manager and coaches every two years. We didn’t want to do that. Had we been successful this season, we probably would have stayed [with Muntean and Riley],” he said. “It just seemed that we needed a change.”
While the 2017 season is still far away, the Blues are already beginning the search to fill the vacancies.
“As soon as we find [replacements], we’ll go with it,” Scheiner said.
Josh Kestenbaum can be reached at 860-973-1811 or jkestenbaum@ centralctcommunications.com