Miguel Ángel Lopez Discussion Thread

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I hate this, but understand it. I’ve been extremely critical of Lopez for his actions, but personally like the guy and think Movistar is better with him than without him.

At the same time though, I completely get why they would have to do this. On paper, they just had what should have been their best GT since 2019. Mas confirmed that he was more than a 5th place. Lopez won the queen stage and then wham...

this happens and overshadows what was arguably their best overall performance since Valverde podiumed in 2019 and Carapaz winning the Giro.

Instead of how they actually rode a great tactical race, now the team has to discuss what to do about Lopez. If I were Mas, I’d be pissed. He just finished on the 2nd step of the podium and looked much stronger than he did a year ago, and all anyone is talking about is the mess.

I don’t want it to happen, but can’t see it happening any other way at this point.
 
Movistar can just send Lopez to the Giro next year.
That was my first thought. If they keep him it would be the best solution for all of them.

The managers for Movistar Latin America were over the moon over the victory on Thursday according to some sources in ESPN. They travelled to Madrid and were expecting the double podium and did not watch the stage until they arrived to Madrid and heard the news. Winning those epic stages are very important to this sponsor according to the source. That was probably what has kept them waiting and waiting. They salivate when a rider like him can win a queen stage at the Tour. Oh well. We'll see what happens.
 
So, you're basically saying that he quit the race (left his job), because boss yelled at him (which by the way we really don't even know if it's true).
Interesting... I wonder how much people on the planet will leave their jobs in one single day, if they do the same thing Lopez did.
I’m not defending Lopez simply pointing out that Unzue didn’t help. Seems to have a long track record. Nobody is questioning him and I note today (story copied above) that Unzue “revealed” that Lopez didn’t attend the team dinner? Couldn’t that stay private? Sounds to me like Unzue is deflecting attention from himself again. Lopez won’t be the last drama at Movistar as long as he’s the manager. Been going on since Indurain’s time.
 
I’m not defending Lopez simply pointing out that Unzue didn’t help. Seems to have a long track record. Nobody is questioning him and I note today (story copied above) that Unzue “revealed” that Lopez didn’t attend the team dinner? Couldn’t that stay private? Sounds to me like Unzue is deflecting attention from himself again. Lopez won’t be the last drama at Movistar as long as he’s the manager. Been going on since Indurain’s time.
That’s a good point about him using the team dinner info as ammo, when that could have been kept just as a team matter. On the other, that is a huge thing to miss, imagine all the riders wondering, as the minutes ticked by, whether he was coming and what he would say to them. Also, the final team dinner would include a lit of people: mechanics, drivers, etc, and it would be a surprise even someone else didn’t post that somewhere on social media.
 
That’s a good point about him using the team dinner info as ammo, when that could have been kept just as a team matter. On the other, that is a huge thing to miss, imagine all the riders wondering, as the minutes ticked by, whether he was coming and what he would say to them. Also, the final team dinner would include a lit of people: mechanics, drivers, etc, and it would be a surprise even someone else didn’t post that somewhere on social media.
It's just one more example of Lopezs' Disrespect for everyone and everything because he missed a split and threw all his toys out of the pram like a baby!
 
Mas and López are very even players resultswise tbo, career lenghts aso. As Movistar is now considering termination of López's contract I say it's epitome of stupidity of the team management. First, if team let López get up to the front group in stage 20 (if he could get there) it would have broaden result potential for the team. Movi for 2nd and 3rd in gc. But no and so it was nationalistic decision made. Nothing new for Movistar. Not dedicated Sky/Ineos fan here but if Mas and López were in those jerseys, there would not been this drama to be seen.

Mas btw did quite lousy tt which shows how on the ropes he was afterall. Lopez was a non-spanish problem as he sure would have done better tt. Maybe Movi was collapsing also for the fact that spaniards were getting zero stage wins in all Gran Tours in 2021.

Second, I tend to believe there are teams that see athletes mental training potential: stress, anger, pain, fear aso management leading better overall performance. Spanish team with temper tantrum written deeply in nations genetics, is it the best platform for temper tantrum athlete? Sometimes yes sometimes not.

If all you want is to win high profile bike races and get your sponsors coverage through hype, boom-or-bust results, entertainment and column inches, you pick Supermán every time. If you want a reliable source of strong results, guaranteed levels of prize money intake and a good working relationship between riders, coaches and management to benefit the team as a whole, you pick Mas every time. Mas won't get you many wins, but he will definitely get you results. López might not get you as many results, but those he does get are going to be big.
Haha..for fairness sake if all one is looking for is sponsor coverage, hype et al, I suggest something else than procycling :p niche sport after all amongst big (pro sports business) players.
 
On the other, that is a huge thing to miss, imagine all the riders wondering, as the minutes ticked by, whether he was coming and what he would say to them.
We have zero reason to assume they were expecting him or that he didn't tell anyone he wasn't coming.

Regardless, normalize skipping work dinners. Nobody likes those.

edit: I'm half joking. But seriously, we don't need any shilling here. Cycling fans too often accept that DS's can treat their riders like crap if they underperform, and I honestly hope they don't see standard bosses in the same light. A las barricadas. Eat the rich.
 
What teams could take over Lopez's contract - Thinking Trek,Astana, Bike Exchange, ISN or it could be a French team like Cofidis.t
Or Ineos. Example Rohan Dennis a rider with a tricky temper. Dennis virtually won the Giro for his teammate. Ineos DS's don't treat their riders' like crap. Strangely they perform (and behave) better, go figure?

Treating riders disrespectfully on or off the road tends not to get the best from them regardless what you pay them. Just like any bad boss no matter how much he pays you. And with Ineos they seem less likely to make nationalistic decisions.
 
LOL Cookster. I know Unzue has a bit temper but a lot of coaches do. That is not new. We can not shift the blame to him. Lopez is responsible for this episode.

Having said that, it is true that some teams deal with riders like this better than others. Ineos could be one of them. Reminds me of the New England patriots of the NFL in the USA. They were one of the very few teams that used to take problematic players with big talent. They used to take the gamble. That was something that used to happen a lot in the NFL. Some talented players have issues with fame, money and cannot handle it for different reasons. Some of these athletes are very humble and with difficult upbringings.
 
LOL Cookster. I know Unzue has a bit temper but a lot of coaches do. That is not new. We can not shift the blame to him. Lopez is responsible for this episode.

Having said that, it is true that some teams deal with riders like this better than others. Ineos could be one of them. Reminds me of the New England patriots of the NFL in the USA. They were one of the very few teams that used to take problematic players with big talent. They used to take the gamble. That was something that used to happen a lot in the NFL. Some talented players have issues with fame, money and cannot handle it for different reasons. Some of these athletes are very humble and with difficult upbringings.
I thought I made it clear I wasn't excusing Lopez for his behavior? Of course he let down his teammates who buried themselves for him. But some blame should be apportioned to Unzue. Lopez isn't the first rider to lose it at Movistar and won't be the last.

Rohan Dennis was virtually written off with his hissy fit whilst riding for Bahrain and look what he did at the 2020 Giro.? That's an example of how management can influence difficult personalities and I am no Ineos fan.

Unzue has been treating riders badly since the 90s - even Indurain. Today he "reveals" that Lopez didn't attend team dinner. Nice bloke this Unzue - not. If I were the sponsors I would be asking some questions of his performance too.
 
Mas and López are very even players resultswise tbo, career lenghts aso. As Movistar is now considering termination of López's contract I say it's epitome of stupidity of the team management. First, if team let López get up to the front group in stage 20 (if he could get there) it would have broaden result potential for the team. Movi for 2nd and 3rd in gc. But no and so it was nationalistic decision made. Nothing new for Movistar. Not dedicated Sky/Ineos fan here but if Mas and López were in those jerseys, there would not been this drama to be seen.

Mas btw did quite lousy tt which shows how on the ropes he was afterall. Lopez was a non-spanish problem as he sure would have done better tt. Maybe Movi was collapsing also for the fact that spaniards were getting zero stage wins in all Gran Tours in 2021.

Second, I tend to believe there are teams that see athletes mental training potential: stress, anger, pain, fear aso management leading better overall performance. Spanish team with temper tantrum written deeply in nations genetics, is it the best platform for temper tantrum athlete? Sometimes yes sometimes not.



Haha..for fairness sake if all one is looking for is sponsor coverage, hype et al, I suggest something else than procycling :p niche sport after all amongst big (pro sports business) players.
Not having the legs to follow Haig and go with the other riders was not a nationalistic decision. Expecting Bernal to help him (lack of tactical mind) was not nationalistic decision (maybe on Lopez part...did he expect Bernal to help him because he is columbian? ) his damage repair is using nationalistic means to make him appear a victim. Sorry, isn't working. He didn't have the legs and he made a poor decision. Should own it like many other pro riders have and would have. Instead, temper tantrum. And having wife on the phone? ...basket case.
 
We have zero reason to assume they were expecting him or that he didn't tell anyone he wasn't coming.

Regardless, normalize skipping work dinners. Nobody likes those.

edit: I'm half joking. But seriously, we don't need any shilling here. Cycling fans too often accept that DS's can treat their riders like crap if they underperform, and I honestly hope they don't see standard bosses in the same light. A las barricadas. Eat the rich.
Really good point, and I don't doubt that Unzue was "weaponizing" that info about the dinner to put even more blame on Lopez.

Maybe I have the wrong impression about the final team dinner at a GT? I always thought they were a big deal because all the riders and staff had just spent 3 1/2 weeks together and it's quite an accomplishment. But, yeah, we don't whether the tea might new he was coming or not.
 
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