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-   -   Cox: Mediocrity not Meritocracy (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=1065687)

somecut* 12-29-2011 11:42 AM

Mediocrity not Meritocracy
Good article. If you think about it, hes very right. we all know the RW extension makes no difference in terms of Wilson's tenure. If he makes the playoffs he stays, he doesnt he goes. But what Burke has effectively done here is take company money and guarantee it to a friend, in essence, putting his neck on the chopping block. Its a ballsy thing to do, with little upside hockey wise


Embracing Mediocrity

It matters not, this contract extension Ron Wilson is gloating over. Or at least, it changes nothing.

He makes the playoffs, he'll stay as Leaf coach. He misses, he won't. This extension is mostly about feathering his nest, at least in terms of certainty. He'll get his money, which is apparently what he wanted under his tree and Brian Burke was happy to provide.

What does matter, in a larger sense, is that this is an undeniable instance of Burke's hockey club openly embracing mediocrity.

Miss the playoffs three straight years, then get to 14th overall in a 30-team league with a weak defensive record (25th out of 30) and the worst penalty killing (30th out of 30) in hockey and the coach responsible for it all gets a handsome, multi-million reward.

Mogwai 12-29-2011 11:51 AM

Pretty true.

Wilson's extension is nothing more than guaranteed money for next year from his best friend. Hell, I'd do the same, considering he might get fired anyway.

If the leafs don't make the playoffs, and Wilson isn't fired, I'm going to have a real hard time being a fan. I think he's the laziest coach in the NHL by a mile. His personality may be great with players, but it doesn't matter when you get out coached/tactically embarrassed in almost every game. That will be the real display of meritocracy vs mediocrity. Money is money to these guys, and the team has plenty.

Leaf Rocket 12-29-2011 11:51 AM

you have to post the link to the article and a small segment of the article to follow the rules on the boards.

hdtrax 12-29-2011 11:56 AM

I disagree with Cox most of the time (as do most Leaf fans) but he's got a valid point here. The team is far from a lock and yet Burke has provided his friend Ron with the equivalent of either a performance bonus (for making the playoffs) or a very, very good severance package (for not making the playoffs).

On the other hand...

I watched Moneyball last week, and I did notice something interesting in the scene where Art Howe (Philip Seymour Hoffman) tells Billy Beane (Brad Pitt) that he can't coach on a one year contract; that no one can "do what I do" for a year and have no plans for the year after. It dawned on me that Wilson likely thinks the same way. He can't keep his Leafs motivated and gunning for the playoffs while managing MASSIVE media and fan expectations without having some sort of guarantee for next year from Brian. I think Brian agrees and that's why a one year extension come forward. In that sense, the extension makes quite a bit of sense.

Nevertheless, I stand by my conviction that the extension was completely unwarranted.

mooseOAK* 12-29-2011 12:00 PM

Anyone have a link to a Cox article from the past where he stated that the Leafs had the roster strong enough to make the playoffs while Wilson is coaching?

Also, where the terms of Wilson's contract were published.

somecut* 12-29-2011 12:03 PM

In a true corporate structure, if this doesnt work out, Burke would have to answer to his stakeholders/shareholders on why he just handed Wilson a couple million dollars of their money. If the answer has an ounce of nepotism to it, then Burke would have to be fired.

I know we dont really care about the OTPP or Bell or Rogers shareholders, but if this doesnt work out, Burke just took a couple million bucks of either a teacher's pension or Bell/Rogers shareholders money and handed it to his friend for nothing. I dont see how Burke isnt fired for this if the Leafs dont make the playoffs and Wilson is dismissed.

BlueBaron 12-29-2011 12:15 PM

It was a short sighted artical showing no understanding of the bench dynamic. To compare the coach to Grabo or Liles....

The term lame duck coach exists for a reason, never heard the term lame duck 3rd line center before, and with good reason.

Coaches need some degree of security to have credibility with their players, "why change your game or your approach when this clown could be gone next year" is the thinking. Unless Cox has a share in the ownership why the hell should he care that Wilson got a 1 year extention that could have him fired at any time ? Makes 0 sense. And don't kid yourselves, if Wilson is fired he would not be unemployed for very long anyway so it costs the Leafs nothing to make this move while strengthening Wilsons bench presence for the short term.

How can anyone be bothered by this ?

Man Bear Pig 12-29-2011 12:17 PM

What doesn't make sense to me is the timing here. Why not just extend him last summer? The Leafs are in the hunt for a playoff spot, pretty much status quo. Unless this team was in the basement Ron was getting an extension regardless and I don't think anyone actually expected us to be in the basement.

Pyromaniac3 12-29-2011 12:36 PM

This team sucks on the boards. That's one area if you are not good at, then your play in your own zone suffers hence the atrocious penalty kill.

Boston is amazing at playing at boards and they use it to their advantage. Last year, the main reason Toronto had a winning record against Boston was due to KGM line where Kulemin was a beast at the boards. This time Kulemin regressed therefore we get blown out whenever we play Boston.

My second point is that we have no legit defensive players. Schenn is but he is making mistakes. Our best penalty killers would be sparingly on top PK units because defense is not their main forte.

I personally blame Burke for our issues in penalty killing. He thought Kulemin wouldn't regress but it backfired.

Cool Hand Luke 12-29-2011 12:37 PM

What a hypocrite. He questions the credibility of a decision based on the fact that it was personal, then writes an article which comes across as extremely personal. Cox just hates Wilson because Wilson won't play nice with the media. How about Cox just writes a good article for once, one where he actually fact checks and reports news, and we might give him praise based on "merit". Why he even has a job in Toronto still baffles my mind...

King Joffrey 12-29-2011 12:39 PM

I'm not sure mooseOAK deserves all this bashing, a man is entitled to his opinion, even if it is wrong.

Except Cox, whom I believe is at the heart of the media hellfire in Toronto. I disagree with almost everything he writes. He is a dolt whose writing would be better suited for the back of a Frosted Flakes box than a major Canadian publication.

TheOneArmedMan 12-29-2011 12:47 PM

I hope the Leafs don't make the playoffs so Ron Wilson can get fired.

I really hate that their friendship is killing this team. I like what Burke has done, but I just hate Wilson. 3 years of no playoffs with one of the worst pk's in the league and he gets an extension:shakehead

LetzgoEggo 12-29-2011 12:49 PM

I feel i have to start by stating I`m not a RW hater. I am a Leaf supporter and my opinions are at least in my mind logically focused on the goal of a Stanley cup, nothing less.

Is the conflict of interest between BB and RW`s friendship potentially causing a delay in that goal.. Yes. I`m not saying anything more or less but IMO that much is enough to cause me to worry.

Darylman 12-29-2011 01:08 PM

He got a one year extension. That's far from an outcry of support from Brian Burke! He prevented him from being a lame duck coach, and thats it. If he supported him fully he'd have given him a MULTI year extension, which he didn't get.

Article is ridiculous. Has this guy ever HAD a coach before? How about his editor? If his editor gave him mandates for his articles, but Cox knew the editor was leaving in a few months, would he take the suggestions to heart and try to become a better writer? Of course he wouldn't. Same goes for hockey. Wilson has built a great team dynamic, as everyone seems to enjoy being around each other, and that has a lot to do with the coach. We're better than we've been in years and we will continue to improve defensively. If we don't, then Wilson will be gone, there's no controversy here.

Epictetus 12-29-2011 01:16 PM

Okay article. The point is there, and I have been advocating it for awhile, but his arguments come across as personal rather than argumentative. Quite tragic really; it almost hit good journalism.

ForSpareParts* 12-29-2011 01:17 PM

how does Burke get unnoticed in this? everybody is bashing away at either cox or wilson, but burke stays clean?

without a doubt burke is sticking his neck out here. he will go down with wilson if this isn't the right decision. so be it. professional sports is one in which winning results count for everything. someone out there wants to make money and have playoff dollars coming in again.

SteveV* 12-29-2011 01:28 PM

If only we could fire the media.

vezna* 12-29-2011 01:32 PM

honestly i don't care burke giving wilson a severance package. if him giving komisarek 10+ million $ didn't get him fired i'm sure the $1-2M wilson got won't either

L Corncrick 12-29-2011 01:43 PM

Damien Cox is a megaphone hooked up to text-to-voice of Google Translate.

mooseOAK* 12-29-2011 01:52 PM


Originally Posted by mooseOAK (Post 41605465)
Anyone have a link to a Cox article from the past where he stated that the Leafs had the roster strong enough to make the playoffs while Wilson is coaching?

Also, where the terms of Wilson's contract were published.


Philkessel 12-29-2011 01:53 PM

even if the leafs miss the playoffs wilson will be the coach next year

EazyB97 12-29-2011 01:57 PM


Originally Posted by mooseOAK (Post 41609201)

This season he wrote an article about Wilson being given a "fair shot" with a team talented enough to make the playoffs.


Pi 12-29-2011 01:58 PM

Coaches need security? When I graduate and start working it'll take me about 12 years to make a million and in all those years I wont even have the security of knowing that I'll be going to work the next day...

This was just a neat severance package incase the Leafs miss the playoffs, his bestie still makes money. As a fan, I wouldnt be disappointed missing the playoffs if it means Wilson is gone.

If mediocrity can create a buzz in this city, meritocracy would get this place going wild. I would much rather see a young coach like Dallas Eakins make mistakes than see a 1300 games veteran coach get a too many men on the ice penalty on a penalty.

Funny thing is...nobody is to blame...its always our 4th liners that play like 10 mins a game people like to blame.

Center Ice Scrum 12-29-2011 01:58 PM

1. MLSE has a butt load of money, so a couple of mil here and there won't do a whole lot.

2. Not a single coach in this league has enough motivational and inspirational power to put the sorry ass teams we've had for the past 3 years into a playoff spot.

3. People who are bashing and saying no playoff spot for 3 years clearly have no gauge of continuity and progression. Start a FB timeline of the Leafs from 3 years ago and enjoy going through all the events. If you believe the quality of the teams in the past were even close to what it is today then you need some special attention.

4. "fibber Ron"?? Cox still sounds like he's butt hurt.

5. All the fair weather Leaf fans who are threatening to stop following this franchise because of Ronnie and Burkie's friendship... don't let the door hit you on the way out. I bet you are the same band wagoners that jump on to any team that's on a hot streak.

True Leaf fans who have any perspective can see that this franchise is going in the right direction. Rome wasn't built in a day and neither were any of these franchises that people claim to be big "contenders". It takes ****ing time and patience. For all the teams that are good now, have gone through pure misery in years prior, we are serving our time (extended it may seem) but we have people who aren't clueless as to how the business is run. Burkie doesn't cave under pressure and neither does Ronnie. They keep their chins up and fire back. Media doesn't like that.

Remember the days of Paul Maurice and JFJ. They always told the media WHAT THEY WANTED TO HEAR, NOT WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY. Now, JFJ and Pat Quinn were the ones who put this franchise in to this whole mess prior to and post lock out. So why haven't I read articles ripping on them, saying how this team has been recovering from all the crap its gone through for the years post lockout when JFJ had frigging Robbie Earl, Justin Pogge and Jiri Tlusty as our top prospects?

Burke's plans are working. They are very slow in progression but there is positive progression never the less. I don't know why people feel the need to jump ship just because it got a little foggy.

Oh and by Cox's logic. Shouldn't the Pens, Wings, Hawks, Nucks, Flyers, Sharks, Rags coaches be fired too? After all, none of those teams won the cup last year even though they were all viewed as heavy favorites? Because the big fish is the cup, not a playoff spot. Why do people base their justification of good coach/ team with playoff appearances rather than Cup Rings? Flawed logic don't you think?

Pi 12-29-2011 02:00 PM


Originally Posted by EazyB97 (Post 41609441)
This season he wrote an article about Wilson being given a "fair shot" with a team talented enough to make the playoffs.


This season is his fair shot..I'm fine that he is coach right now. The extension was a joke though.

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