Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Clark Hunt Voted To Keep Scott Pioli, According To Report

According to Bob Gretz of, Kansas City Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt voted to retain former GM Scott Pioli but was out-voted by other team officials.

From Gretz:

It happened near the end of the disastrous 2012 Chiefs season. Whether the moment came during a face-to-face meeting or over a conference call isn’t known. But the key members of the Hunt Family football franchise took a vote.

The voters numbered six, including Lamar Jr., Sharron, Clark and Daniel Hunt – all four of the team’s owners. Also part of the moment was Lee Derrough, former president & CEO of Hunt Midwest Enterprises and now a trustee of the Lamar Hunt and family interests in Kansas City. The sixth person involved was team president Mark Donovan.

The subject was the future of Scott Pioli as the franchise’s general manager. How much discussion, if any, that went on is not clear. What is known is that a vote was taken on whether to keep Pioli, or fire him after four years in charge of the Chiefs.

The vote was 5-1, in favor of dumping Pioli. The only vote in his favor came from Clark Hunt.

If Gretz goes on to elaborate, I can’t tell you what he says because his site has a paywall but if this report is true, it may disappoint some Chiefs fans that are feeling a little more happy with Hunt’s job performance.

Just a week ago, we ran a story praising Hunt for the job he has done restructuring the organization following the disastrous 2012 season. Part of that praise was that Hunt recognized he had made a mistake with Pioli and made the hard decision to move on.

When the season ended, Hunt acted swiftly. Head coach Romeo Crennel got the axe and Scott Pioli was put on notice that his days were likely numbered. I found it somewhat interesting that Hunt kept Pioli on board through the interview with eventual head coach Andy Reid. It was clear that Pioli didn’t get the job done and that it was time to move on but in the end, Hunt allowed Pioli to exit gracefully in what was trumpeted as a “mutual parting.” It was a kind way to deal with an employee that had taken the organization to new depths of futility and embarrassment, both on the field and off. To me, it indicated that perhaps the accusations that Hunt was nothing but a cold-hearted businessman that was only interested in money, were misguided.

Now it seems that, if Hunt had his way, Scott Pioli would still be the GM of the Kansas City Chiefs.

One could argue that by putting it up for a vote that Hunt still exhibited leadership and that that leadership led to making what most believe was the best decision for the Chiefs.

Still, it is a bit concerning that the man charged with running the organization couldn’t see that Pioli needed to go.

What do you think, Addicts? Is this much ado about nothing or does the fact that Hunt wanted to keep Pioli make you fearful of his future decision-making?

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Tags: Clark Hunt Kansas City Chiefs Scott Pioli

  • Chief

    Who cares. Scott is gone and he brought in a good new staff.

    • jimfromkcj

      Don’t count your chickens before they hatch. this staff has yet to prove that they are even adequate, let alone good.

  • berttheclock

    One thing really troubled me after the column by Kent Babb came out describing how poorly Pioli treated employees. Clark Hunt was asked about it and sided with Pioli in his management style. It didn’t surprise me as CH had never really worked in his life and had been trained in the Goldman,Sachs management program. Peons are peons, I suppose to some born with silver spoons attached to their mouths.

    • KCMikeG

      The organization had gotten lazy, entitled and was a total failure. When you are doing a crappy job and new management is brought in their job is to get results by kicking butt and taking names. What would you do with an embarrassment of an organization? Come in and give everyone a raise and encourage them to try harder knowing you have 3-5 years at best to turn around a disaster before you are fired. Hell no. People needed to have their world shaken up and be managed in a strict disciplinary style. There was no doubt that drastic changes needed to be made. Even though there weren’t instant results it did bring about a new mindset which is being built upon by the new regime.

      • mnelson52

        Pioli was a bad GM. End of story

        • KCMikeG

          Never said he was a great GM and that’s not the end of the story. If the state of the environment is ignored it won’t suddenly heal itself. There’s no denying what I said about our organization was true and needed to be addressed.

  • berttheclock

    May we collectively thank the five for their astute votes?

    • Da Menace

      Here, here

      • Brody Hall

        yes sir

  • P Heitman


  • Stacy D. Smith

    *Fingers in ears* La, la, la…

  • Stacy D. Smith

    That’s disturbing, but… He DID go on to hire both Reid and Dorsey.

  • kmon

    This makes me look at hunt in a new way. weak, no backbone, Mr nice guy, yes man. so if it were up to him then pioli would still be here, we would’ve drafted a kicker with the #1 pick, signed Barry Richardson to be the saviour on the right side, probably move crennel to offensive coordinator and make al Davis’s daughter our head coach smh c’mon son

  • Arrowhead Magic

    Regardless of what Clark voted, when it came time to find a new head coach and GM he went out and got arguably the best candidates for the job. So I’m not going to suddenly change my mind about how Clark has done this offseason. He’s still done a good job.

    • owensgone

      I am mostly in this camp, but it if this story is true, it does affect the way I will view Clark’s future handling of the organization. I also know how boards work in the corporate world, and it often works to the CEO’s advantage to occasionally blame touchy decisions on “the board.” Clark may have played this politically down the middle knowing there were five dissenting votes so that he could literally tell Pioli he had planned to honor his contract, but was outnumbered by the board.

  • Ephrom Marks

    Once he saw how his decision was accepted my Chiefs Nation he can’t help but see his desire to retain Pioli was a mistake. I would like to think he learned from the decision made by the family members and going forward he would make the correct decisions.

  • Matt Finucane

    So Donovan voted to can his former mentor? Can’t say that surprises me too much.

    • Chief Hokie

      Yep – it was the politically popular choice

  • Chief Hokie

    If Hunt voted last, then he did it purely out of respect for pioli so it wouldn’t be 6-0. If he voted first, then uh oh.

    • Chief Hokie

      *assuming it was an open vote

  • Lyle Graversen

    I don’t think this really changes what I thought about how Hunt handled the situation. It seemed clear to me that based on how Hunt handled the Reid interview and hire that he wanted to see if Reid could work with Pioli. When Reid didn’t want to, Hunt chose to do what he had to do to land Reid. I always thought that Hunt would have liked to keep Pioli with Reid if he could because it would save money, but he understood that saving money wasn’t worth it in the long run. I give Hunt credit for making the right call when push came to shove, but I understand that he’s a business man more than a football man.


      Agreed. But as JH says, I have a hard time believing anything that comes from the mouth of Bob Gretz. This is the first we have heard of there even being a vote. And if there were, I am sure that Clark Hunt’s vote would have been given a high priority. In any case, and as far as Chiefs Nation is concerned, Pioli is gone. And good riddance!

  • Jim Harper

    I have learned over the years to take just about everything Bob Gretz says with a grain of salt. What is his motivation to release this kind of story? Is he just wanting to rain on the Chief’s fans parade? Secondly I can’t imagine that anyone within the inner circle would give that information to Gretz thus allowing him to undermine Clark Hunt for whatever reason he has. I have a hard time believing the story

    • KCMikeG

      So true Jim. His motivation – a bigger audience to jack his ratings! I know it has been a long time since there has been great football in KC. One of the effects of that is some of the KC “media” has used this to their advantage by building their fan base from the disillusioned portion of Chief fans. There would be no one but the people in the room voting that would know the truth and absolutely no benefit to any of them to leak the info to Gretz. It almost seems like some people actually enjoy running down their own team and organization. Sorry no pleasure in that for me.

      • Darkwolf1414

        Didn’t Gretz used to write for And he was the sideline reporter for Chiefs games on KCFX. Just saw some pictures of him. HOLY SHIT his voice sounds much older than he looks. He sounds to be around 90 and knocking on death’s door. Anyway, perhaps it’s sour grapes for getting fired from the team’s website about 5 years ago.

    • Patrick Allen

      Just because we don’t like what someone is reporting doesn’t mean it isn’t true.

      • Jim Harper

        Nor does it mean it is.

        • KCMikeG

          Touch`e Jim.

          • Jim Harper

            Thanks Mike

      • KCMikeG

        What would make it true or not would be some substantiation by a named source instead of just Gretz spewing HIS misguided opinions as the “truth”. Do you seriously believe anyone in that room during the “vote” – if it ever really happened at all except in Gretz’s mind – would tell anyone anything about the results? What would be the reasoning for sharing that info? What would be the benefit? To further provoke an already distraught fan base? How would that help sell tickets or merchandise? How would it make for a better environment for the coaches and players moving forward? It wouldn’t. These are the many rational reasons, when combined with the past loads of crap Gretz has promoted as truth, that I will continue to doubt this “story” until there is some proof of what he says.

        • Jim Harper

          Now that is the truth!

  • paul pace

    Who cares???? The bottomline is the Chiefs have a new H/C and GM running the show and it appears that it is for the better!!

  • chiefridgy

    Maybe he gave him 1 vote out of pity.

    • Matt Walker

      Lol my thoughts exactly

    • KCMikeG

      Or maybe he is a man of his word and told Pioli he would stand behind him through the entire contract. Again – none of this is based in any reality other than Gretz says so without providing anything to back it up. Gretz is the same hack who spewed the Haley emotional breakdown under the pressure from Pioli. I don’t know which paragraph is more ridiculous than the other.

      • chiefridgy

        Chill baby. It’s all good.

  • Danny W

    Ah Bob Gretz lost this cat as a fan a few years back. He started making people pay for his content when it wasn’t that great in the first place.

  • e_racer

    Bob Gretz got fired. He doesn’t have the access to know what happened inside Clark’s office.
    People who say Clark Hunt was born with a silver spoon … need to have it rammed up where the sun don’t shine. I would be glad to facilitate that effort.
    I will not call Bob Gretz a liar. He just told a whopper this go round, and that does not make him a liar all the time. He is usually quite credible. However, this time he needs to make a confession to his priest.
    Clark Hunt is not going to tell anyone how he voted. He’s too smart for that. He probably polled some people in the office. I doubt anyone close to Clark Hunt told anyone how it went down. I really doubt if Bob Gretz was the recipient of a leak from within.
    Bertthecock, shut up!

    • Patrick Allen

      Gretz is still a credentialed member of the KC media and has contacts with the Chiefs. I doubt he just made this up.

      • Peter885

        Doubtful he made it up. But it could be bad info. Gretz was the reporter who said the Chiefs were going to announce during their most recent MNF game that they had sold the naming rights to Arrowhead Stadium, was he not?

        It’s also seems rather dubious to take this so out of context. The story’s title is about what to expect from Pioli now that he’s joined the media. What does a vote by the Hunt family have to do with the expectations for Pioli as a TV analyst?

        There’s clearly a lot of further context there that we don’t have. For all we know, Gretz got the story from Clark Hunt complete with an explaination for why he voted like he did, and that is included in the story. Or it could be another unverified claim like the naming rights story.

      • e_racer

        Being credentialed and being a staff reporter for the Chiefs are two different things.

        Gretz was used by Carl Peterson to spread propaganda. You had to consider who employed him when reading his articles.

        The Chiefs canned Gretz, and he became a better writer. He had the freedom to tell it as it was instead of giving the company line. However, he also gave up a lot of the access.

  • e_racer

    Patrick Allen,
    I know you are new to the community. We should welcome you in. However, you should also know better.
    Grow up.

    • Darkwolf1414


      • Patrick Allen

        Yeah I am a bit confused as well.

        • e_racer

          Gretz has a press pass. He does not have access to the administration.

          I like Gretz. He is one of the few writers I have a smidgen of respect for in KC.

          There were four people involved in the decision to can Pioli. Gretz did not get information from anyone of them.

          Bob Gretz used to have that kind of access. He doesn’t have it now, and it seems to me as if he might be getting a little desperate to sell his website.

          Your report is absolutely garbage. If Gretz is your only contact, then it isn’t enough.

          I enjoy some of what you have to write. I read it. That is more than I can say about others.

          The failure is not in writing a story. The failure is in not having it well sourced.

      • e_racer


    • KCMikeG

      Who the hell are you and WTH are you talking about?

      • e_racer

        Someone you will never know, and if you cannot figure out what I was writing about, then I can’t help you.

        KC Mike, nothing personal, but I was following the Chiefs when you were still in diapers. I hope that was not just last year. In that case, if it was, then I am truly sorry.

        • KCMikeG

          You should go to the clue store and get as many as you can afford because 1) Patrick Allen isn’t new to the community – he runs AA and 2) you in no way explained what he needed to “grow up” about so please feel free to use one of those clues you pick up and 3) I have been following the Chiefs since 1969 so unless you were a fan before 1963 the diapers wouldn’t apply either. The good news in your post is that I will never know you.

          • Darkwolf1414

            Thank you for explaining that to e_racer! I love how he can make the statement he made and somehow Patrick and I are the morons. Go figure.

          • e_racer

            I certainly would not call Patrick Allen a moron. I detest the use of that phrase. I hope you don’t stoop to words that debase the mentally challenged.

          • e_racer

            My dad went to Purdue, and that is how I became a fan of the Chiefs. We used to listen to the play by play of the games when Dawson quarterbacked the Boilermakers.

            So yes, I have followed the Chiefs for a very long time.

            If I am mistaken, then I apologize. I understood Patrick Allen’s biography said he moved to KC with his wife.
            My “grow up” comment may have been a little over the top. However, it irks me when people wear a journalistic hat, and don’t follow the rules. It may be a small point to you, but restating an opinion piece is not a well sourced document.
            KC Mike, I like your enthusiasm to the team, and have nothing bad to say to you. You are a true fan.

          • P Heitman

            Never claimed to be a “well-sourced document.” He’s a blogger. He was asking your opinion on Gretz’s piece.

          • KCMikeG

            I appreciate your response and was a little strong in my response too. We are all fans here and sometimes our passion gets the better of us. I am looking forward to a year where we have lots to celebrate together.

          • e_racer

            I agree… This should be an interesting year. With a couple of breaks the Chiefs could find themselves back in contention. I like all the moves the team has made.

            There would be nothing sweeter than to see Clark hoist the trophy named after his dad.

    • P Heitman

      Patrick Allen,

      How dare you write articles on relevant Chiefs news on the Chiefs blog you run. You should know better. Grow up.



      • e_racer

        He can write them, but it is only relevant if it is true. It is not valid if the source has an axe to grind. You must consider the source. In this case, there is only one, and that one is likely to be from a remote area south of Bob Gretz navel

        • P Heitman

          You’re entitled to your opinion, however misguided it may be. Go Chiefs.

          • e_racer

            I am glad you are the arbiter of truth. It makes it that much easier for the rest of us.

          • P Heitman

            Listen, I’m sure you know that this website is just as much about Chiefs fans interacting with other Chiefs fans, and the discussion that occurs in the comments, as it is about the articles written. Pieces are written to spur interaction and debate. That’s why this website exists. Patrick Allen writes his opinions on this site, and tries, consciously, to stir debate and encourage interaction.

            To write this article in the middle of June – an admittedly slow period in the near-twelve-month NFL season – and offer his opinion on a separate article written by someone else, in effort to share Chiefs-relevant news/opinions with a fan-base that visits his website for the sole purpose of discussing relevant Chiefs topics is in no way out of bounds. Calling into question his journalistic integrity and telling him to grow up is simply off the mark. Your beef is with concept of blogging, not Patrick Allen.

            I sure it was just a case of PWE (Posting While Emotional). I get it, I’ve been there. I just thought it was funny, and kind of weird, so I posted. Sue me.

          • P Heitman

            *THE concept of blogging, sorry.

        • P Heitman

          Truth does not make it relevant. Being something reported by a credentialed KC media member about the Kansas City Chiefs makes it relevant. What about free agent rumors, or mock drafts? Are those true? A rumor, by definition, is “a currently circulating story or report of uncertain or doubtful truth.” Gretz was saying, “Clark Hunt voted to retain Pioli.” Allen was saying, “Gretz is saying that Clark Hunt voted to retain Pioli. How do you feel about it?” That couldn’t be more relevant, especially for

  • Patriot42

    If Clark knew his was to be out voted maybe he stuck with Pioli because of loyality.

    • e_racer

      He may have stuck by Pioli out of legality reasons.

  • jimfromkcj

    I don’t know how many times I have remarked that the only constant in the Chiefs over all these years is the ownership. GM’s and coachs come and go, but I would guess that none of them did anything of consequence without the permission of ownership. The Hunts are cheap and there is no getting around it. I would bet that if there had been no fan revolt and banners flying over Arrowhead that Pioli would still be calling the shots and the conversation would be how Cassel was doing getting ready for the season in 2013 as a Chief.

  • Outback Chief

    Maybe Clark wanted to give Pioli the cleaning contract at Arrowhead

  • oldchiefsfan

    At this point in time I think it is irrelevant. Pioli is indeed gone and a new era has begun. All that about who voted for and against Pioli is a moot point as far as I am concerned.

    • e_racer

      The source was Bob Gretz, who is trying to sell a website. Usually, there are two sources to confirm a story. If this was anything other than Bob Gretz speaking out of his anal cavity, then it should have been reported that way