Warbirds respond to ex-GM claims

ODESSA, Texas (KMID/KPEJ) — West Texas Warbirds general manager Zack Bugg announced Friday that he has stepped down from his role and stepped down.

Bugg said in a statement that the team does not share his vision for players. He accused members of the front office of trying to create a new arena football team in another city instead of focusing on the Warbids and that “didn’t sit well” with Bugg.

According to Bugg, sponsors were having difficulty continuing sponsorship of the team due to issues with the first two seasons.

“I have a reputation that I have to defend. I could not allow my integrity to be compromised for an organization that views football players as just players and is not about children,” the statement read in part.

Warbirds owner Leif Kertis responded to the claims by saying that as the owner of the company he was working with a group of investors to implement systems and processes for a new team in a city. different, but that he was not actively seeking ownership of the new team.

Kertis, owner of Kertis Sports and Entertainment Group, said he hired Bugg to manage day-to-day operations for the team locally from the Permian Basin and was surprised by his sudden departure.

“We hired Zack as general manager because we wanted someone local to be able to execute the vision and mission of what the Warbirds were originally brought in to do,” Kertis said. “The goal was to focus on our whole parent company, which was supposed to be why he was hired and the focus of the organization was his.”

Kertis said the team has hired a new general manager and the team has evolved since Bugg’s departure. The team released a full statement in response to Bugg’s statement.

Bugg also said in his statement that he was working to start a youth sports organization in the community.

Bugg is a local contractor and was promoted to general manager in August, at the end of last season.

The Warbirds season begins in April.


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