Jets scouts an issue.
It appears as though last yearís honeymoon season is over and reality has set in. Our ďWinnipeg JetsĒ are simply the ďAtlanta ThrashersĒ playing in a better hockey market wearing nicer jerseys. Last year we saw the odd glimpse of a good team mixed in with some sloppy play and lazy legs. Nonetheless we were all so happy to have our Jets back (Iím still very happy)
The 2013 Winnipeg Jets seem to have taken a step back from last year. We lost a few pieces in the offseason and gained some new ones to replace them, but here we are ľ of the way through the season and we just canít seem to score.
Iím a big believer in building via the draft, but this can only be done if the proper scouting tools are in place. Cheveldayoff has proven that he can build a Stanley Cup champion (Chicago), but he did this with the Blackhawks scouting team. Chevy oversees a Jets scouting team that employs a large number of scouts from the franchises Atlanta Thrasher days.
During Atlantaís time in the NHL, the team made the playoffs once in 11 seasons. 12 seasons if you want to include last yearís season as the Winnipeg Jets. One would think that a team missing the playoffs 10 times out of 11 wouldíve built a decent roster via the draft. Pittsburgh did it, Anaheim did it, Chicago and Detroit did it. Edmonton is in the process of doing it. So why havenít the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise done it? One has to look at the scouting/management of this franchise over those rough years in Atlanta. Many of those same people are still employed with our Jets.
Currently the Jets have 12 amateur scouts, 4 of which came from Atlanta (Tavis MacMillan, Fredrik Jax, Pat Carmichael, and Bob Owen). The remaining 8 amateur scouts are very junior in their careers with only 1 having some scouting experience in the NHL (Chris Snell with Tampa Bay).
The above amateur scouting team is managed by the Head Amateur Scout Mark Hillier who has been with the organization since 2003-04 (Atlanta days) and the Director of Amateur Scouting for our Jets is Marcel Comeau who has been with the organization since 2003 (Atlanta days).
Our Head Eurpoean Scout is Evgeny Bogdanovich who has been with the franchise since the 1999-00 season (Atlanta days).
We have 5 pro scouts for our Jets (2 of which are new to scouting in the NHL). Jack Birch and John Perpich are the Jets pro scouts with the most experience. Birch spent time scouting in Florida and Vancouver and coached in New York way back in the day. Perpich has been with the organization since 1999 (Atlanta days). The Jets also employ Bruce Southern as a pro scout. Bruce has a long resume in the MJHL, but nothing in the pro leagues.
Our director of pro scouting is Mark Dobson who has been with the organization since 1998 (Atlanta days).
Our current assistant general manager is Larry Simmons. Simmons held the position of Vice-President/Assistant General Manager of the Atlanta Thrashers in 2004 until they relocated to Winnipeg. Prior to this, Simmons had been employed by Atlanta since 1999 and directly involved in player personnel moves.
For those that are interested, here are the top 2 draft picks this organization has selected each year since their existence and some players that were missed by the scouts:
1999: 1) drafted Patrick Stefan (1st overall). Stefan never amounted to the hype, spent six seasons in the organization before disappearing off the face of the earth.
Couldíve had: Daniel Sedin (2nd overall), or Henrik Sedin (3rd overall)
**Of note, Atlanta traded with Vancouver to obtain the 1st pick used to select Stefan**
2) drafted Luke Sellars (30th overall). Sellars played 1 game and left for a European career.
2000: 1) drafted Dany Heatley (2nd overall). Heatley had 3 successful seasons with the Thashers before he was eventually traded to Ottawa in 2005 for Greg Devries and Marian Hossa.
** Of note, in 2008 Atlanta traded Hossa to Pittsburgh for Colby Armstrong, Erik Christensen, Angelo Esposito and a 1st round pick in the 2008 draft. The pick turned out to be Daultan Leveille (29th overall).
Leveille never blossomed into an NHL player, Armstrong left Atlanta after 3 seasons and signed with Toronto. Christensen and Esposito were eventually traded by the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise in exchange for minor league players.
2) drafted Ilya Nikulin (31st overall), Nikulin never played pro hockey in North America.
Couldíve had: Nick Schultz (33rd overall), Tomas Kopecky (38th overall)
2001: 1) drafted Ilya Kovalchuk (1st overall). Kovalchuk had 8 successful seasons with Atlanta before he was traded to New Jersey for Johhny Oduya, Nick Bergfors, Patrice Cormier and New Jerseys 1st round pick in 2010. The draft pick eventually was dealt to Chicago when Byfuglien was acquired. Oduya was traded last season by the team for 2 picks (2nd & 3rd round). Bergfors spent 2 seasons with Atlanta before being dealt to Florida. Cormier is currently playing for the Jets farm team.
2) drafted Michael Garnett (80th overall). Garnett played 24 games in the NHL and eventually landed in the KHL.
2002: 1) drafted Kari Lehtonen (2nd overall). Lehtonen played 4 seasons with Atlanta before they traded him to Dallas for Ivan Vishnevskiy and a 4th round pick which turned out to be Ivan Telegin.
Couldíve had: Jay Bouwmeester (3rd overall), Scottie Upshall (3rd overall) or Alexander Semin (13th overall).
**Of note, Ivan Vishnevskiy was traded to Chicago for Andrew Ladd
2) drafted Jim Slater (30th overall)
Couldíve had: Duncan Keith (54th overall), or Juri Hudler (58th overall)
**Of note, Atlanta promised Florida that they wouldnít select Bouwmeester with their pick in exchange for 2 late round selections which turned out to be 2 journeymen players.
2003: 1) drafted Brayden Coburn (8th overall). Coburn played 2 seasons with Atlanta registering 5 points before being traded to Philadelphia in 2007 for 35 year old Alexi Zhitnik. Zhitnik registered 22 points in 2 seasons with Atlanta before departing for the KHL.
Couldíve had: Dion Phaneuf (9th overall), Jeff Carter (11th overall), Brent Seabrook (14th overall), Zach Parise (17th overall), Ryan Getzlaf (19th overall), Ryan Kesler (23rd overall), Mike Richards 14th overall) or Corey Perry (28th overall).
**Of note, Coburn is in his 5th season with Philadelphia and recorded his best career season in 2007-08 with 36 points.
2) drafted Jimmy Sharrow (110th overall). Sharrow left for a Dutch league after just one short season with Atlanta.
2004: 1) drafted Boris Valabik (10th overall). Valabik played 3 seasons with Atlanta registering a total of 7 points before leaving for a Czech league.
Couldíve had: Drew Stafford (13th overall), Travis Zajac (20th overall), Cory Schneider (26th overall) or Mike Green (29th overall).
2) drafted Grant Lewis (40th overall). Lewis has been an AHL/KHL player only thus far.
Couldíve had: David Booth (53rd overall), Brandon Dubinsky (60th overall), or David Krejci (63rd overall)
2005: 1) drafted Alex Bourret (16th overall). Bourret has not developed into an NHL player. Bourret has played in the AHL, CHL and KHL only.
Couldíve had: TJ Oshie (24th overall) or James Neal (33rd overall)
2) drafted Ondrej Pavelec (41st overall)
2006: 1) drafted Bryan Little (12th overall). Little is on the current Jets roster.
Couldíve had: Michael Grabner (14th overall) or Claude Giroux 22nd overall)
2) drafted Riley Holzaptel (43rd overall). Holzaptel has been an average AHLíer at best.
Couldíve had: Milan Lucic (50th overall)
2007: 1) drafted Spencer Machacek (67th overall). Machacek currently plays for the Jets farm team.
The 2007 draft was not deep with talent in the later rounds and the Atlanta Thrashers dealt their 1st round pick to St. Louis to obtain 35 year old Keith Tkachuk. The pick traded for Tkachuk ended up being the 24th overall and Atlanta missed out on the following players: David Perron (26th overall), and PK Subban (43rd). Tkachuk played 18 games for Atlanta registering 15 points before being traded back to St. Louis for a conditional 4th round pick in 2008.
2) drafted Niclas Lucenius (115th overall). Lucenius has not played pro hockey in North America.
Couldíve had: Jamie Benn (129th overall)
2008: 1) drafted Zach Bogosian (3rd overall). Bogosian is on the current Jets roster.
2) drafted Daultan Leveille (29th overall). Not offered a contract by the Jets, and is currently Montreal Canadiens property.
2009: 1) drafted Evander Kane (4th overall). Kane is on the current Jets roster.
2) drafted Karl Klingberg (34th overall). Klingberg currently plays for the Jets farm team.
2010: 1) drafted Alex Burmistrov (8th overall). Burmistrov is on the current Jets roster.
Other available players: Mikael Granlund (9th overall), Vlad Tarasenko (16th overall)
2) drafted Julian Melchiori (87th overall). Melchiori currently plays for the Jets farm team.
2011: 1) drafted Mark Scheifele (7th overall). Scheifele is finishing juniors.
Other available players: Sean Couturier (8th overall), Dougie Hamilton (9th overall).
2012: 1) drafted Jakob Trouba (9th overall). Trouba is still playing university hockey.
2) drafted Lukas Sutter (39th overall). Sutter is still playing juniors.
After breaking down the franchises draft history itís clear to say the team hasnít drafted well at all. Even more troubling are some of the trades that were made. Itís true that many other teams have missed out on some great talent, but with all the high picks this franchise received over the years, thereís little to show for it today.
2007 was the only year that the franchise did not have a 1st round selection (making their 1st pick 67th overall). The franchise has had 11 first round picks which have come in the top 10 selections of their respected draft year. The franchise has selected in the top 5, in six different years.
With the amount of top picks our team has had over the franchises 13 seasons, we should be further along than we are.
The above information wouldnít be so worrisome if the Jets scouting team was a whole new regime. For the most part, the people that built the Thrashers are still deeply rooted in the development of the Winnipeg Jets.
Itís true that Cheveldayoff gets the last say, but a GM is usually only as good as his staff below him.
After sitting down and researching this information, I donít have much faith in the current Jets scouting/player personnel staff. The team should have an abundance of talent and be in a position to trade really good players for missing pieces to the puzzle. The team should be a playoff contender by now.
The jury is still out on the Scheifele selection and many other current 1st/2nd round selections currently playing on the Jets roster. Iím not counting these guys out, but time is ticking.
We didnít address our scoring needs in the offseason and 1 of our 3 prized off season acquisitions has already been traded away just a ľ of the way through the season (Ponikarovsky).
The Jets need a shakeup, but I donít think it should take place at the player/coach level. Itís time to really look at our amateur and pro scouts if we want to be a contender some day.
Trouba will be a great dman for Winnipeg. He was a man amongst boys in the WJ's. Half those years you listed were god awful draft years. 1999 there are only really 2 superstars that came out of that draft and they play in Vancouver.
Ask again after this years draft. It's the deepest it's been in years.
If you want to see worse drafting. See the Canucks drafting. Patrick White anyone? And the Canucks don't even have a scout in the WHL
You could say this about every draft in every sport. Most of those players you mention were taken late in the 2nd or later so i guess everyone in the NHL screwed up not taking them either. There is no science to a draft its all about getting lucky.
At first blush, it looks like very solid drafting.
Playing "could-have-had" is a mug's game.
For all their misses, they also hit with a few early picks with Kovy, Heatley, Lehtonen, Kane and Bogo, in terms of impact NHL players.
Scheifele and Trouba are decent prospects, too, that many teams would want, and i'm sure if teams talk trade with the Jets, those names quickly come up as players they would want. Burmi, Kane and Bogo too.
Picks in rounds other than the 1st are really hit and miss - more so than picks in the 1st, which have their challenges too. The fact Enstrom worked out and Postma and Redmond look like NHL'ers, is a bonus too.
Once the Jets have a playoff calibre team, more of their picks can take time to mature. There won't be pressure from fans to get them in the line-up. Once that happens, you will likely see more of those later picks working out - sort of the Detroit model. When those later picks make the NHL, they are ready to play.
I think the scouts have done reasonably well, lately, in adding some talented kids into the prospect pool. I think that will continue, and this year may be the key.
For having a playoff calibre team, i think Chevy will have to move some assets to fill holes with players that are available, both for the short and long term. We haven't seen that too much, just with 3rd and 4th liners. I think other teams want to fleece the Jets of their young quality players, and Chevy is resisting until they know what they have with some of these guys.
Is it frustrating for fans? Likely. Is it the right thing to do for the organization? I, for one, think it is.
I agree with the above posters, and by the looks of it since 2008 the draft choices were getting better...or perhaps they had better luck.
Bonus note, Lowry seems to be developing quite nicely.
It's a total educated crapshoot, you look for all the hallmark signs, charcter, skills etc then you commit.
You can take the first round of any year and pick out a number of draft busts.
Correct me if I am wrong but, does Mark Scheifele have a higher upside than Couturier and Dougie Hamilton?
You wrote about how we could have had Michael Grabner. Every team could have had him he was put on waivers and claimed by the Islanders.
Wasn't that Dougie Hamilton looking very soft in front on that goal yesterday? Why yes I think it was.
Gotta lay some of this at the feet of Don Waddell and not just the scouting staff. He was able to overrule them and made the ultimate choices. When Atlanta Spirit acquired the team, DW's mandate was to fill the building with fans for one season in the hopes that the team could be sold the next and that mandate lasted for several years running. To help achieve that mandate, some of the picks had demographically motivated components to them in an attempt to bring in fans. He (and to an extent Dudley) would take a slightly less qualified American player in some instances. I am not a DWad defender by any stretch, and Stefan was a horrible bust, but the Sedin's said they would not sign to separate teams so that was a factor. I hope I don't have to mention the factors involved in the "suspect" Dany Heatly trade...
I disagree with the initial statement - Chevy DID NOT BUILD ANYTHING IN CHICAGO. He sat back and watched Dale Tallon. Then Stan Bowman promoted him within the organization when Tallon took HIS STAFF to Florida. So do not give him any credit. He was in the office when the calls may have been made. That's it.
I have no faith in Chevy at all. His trades are minor and waiver wire pickups tell me he has no urgency. The fans in the city will not have ANY patience with him.
I hope that the team falls to the low .250s this season. Chevy is an idiot so I expect he won't fire Noel - which is perfect. This way TNSE can clean the house next year (2013-14) and get rid of both mistakes - Noel and Chevy. Rookie management was a poor decision by TNSE and we're seeing the consequences. A losing club where vets are doing what they want, a coach who can't motivate and a GM afraid to pull the trigger. We've lost the locker room and this requires a significant rebuild with a well known/ respected veteran GM and coach.
Don't get me wrong - Don Waddell is at fault here too but let's no make Chevy out to be some remarkable GM. He has done almost nothing since inheriting this team. This is the same yo-yo who decided instead of building chemistry in their first practices, to break the team up and play split squad. The guy went to more baseball games than hockey games it seems.
He has nothing to trade.
He has no urgency, because he doesnt need to have urgency.
Build this thing properly rather then have knee jerk reactions because some of the fan base isnt happy.
That is a stupid way to build your organization.
I don't under stand peoples impatience with this organization.
Everyone knew that this team wasnt very good when they moved.
Stanley cup or playoff comtending teams don't move.
All Chevy has proven so far is that he does indeed track the waiver wire.
For the guys who say there is no urgency, give your heads a shake, their is an urgency to WIN games, there is an urgency to push for a playoff spot, what would be the point of fans attending Jets games and fans following the team if that ISN'T the case?
This team has some good core players. The trick is to weed off the supporting players you don't like and replace them with the players you want, but this is going to take time. I'm sorry, but most teams aren't run by GMs that can be taken advantage of, so when Chevy goes to shop say Antropov around, he doesn't get many people that are interested. Trading away really bad players for good just doesn't happen.
How about Chevy actually doing what TNSE hired him to do. How about building through the draft. That means draft day trades to move down and get additional players who can assist within the next year or two. Drafting underclassmen and hoping they pan out is foolish. Waiting FOUR years for Trouba is ridiculous.
Waiver wire pickups are for lowly teams. We don't need this. We have adequate players in the minors we need to see. Why haven't we seen our $!M AHL players like Jaffray and Machacek? What is Chevy waiting for? Is he waiting for them to bolt like Kulda who was almost promised a shot?
As for trades, only the village idiot trades players when their value is low. Wellwood should have been traded to the Canucks who WANTED him for a 3/4/5th rounder. Now, he's put in and out of the lineup - how do you think he feels? Think he's resigning or will have anything good to say about the organization?
Kane, yes he is our only legit scorer and I love him. But EVERYONE knows he will be run out of town eventually. Why not trade him when his value is high? He's worth 2 first rounders. Right now, TNSE KNOWS which realignment the NHL is going with. Find a trade partner and move on.
Buy out Pavelec at the end of the season and NEVER give 4-5 year deals for any player unless they are a true superstar. A second year starting G should have never been given that salary. We're the laughing stock of the league. Enstrom (a great transition player) and Byfuglien (a known disaster in his own zone but great offensively) could be traded for 1/2/3 rounders to again, restart the program.
Sign Burmi to a 3-4 year deal before he holds out. Consider him gone very soon because he's already ticked at the organization. I'm surprised Noel hasn't tried him in goal yet.
Trade Wheeler while he still has some value. If people say they want to build through the draft, this guy ain't it. He had a great year last year - trade him now before he loses value. You could get a second rounder for him and a decent guy in the AHL.
These are simple ideas to get a winner in 2-3 years not waste time signing guys like Jokinen who I do like but is a veteran player you bring in for a playoff run not for a rebuild. Chevy over-estimated the pieces he thought he had last year. Lots of people did.
So yeah, there are things he can do - but I would prefer to watch a young emerging hockey team like the Oilers than rag tag has been/ never weres that pull on these jets jerseys.
Getting serious about building through the draft can be done but Chevy hasn't done it. He doesn't know how. Trading down means acquiring pieces. If the scouts did their homework it shouldn't be a problem.
Resigning a floater like Antropov tells the players in the room it's okay to take a night off. Signing UFA Jokinen (a well known lazy player in every NHL circle) also tells the players this. Then Noel wonders why his players don't give 100%. Byfuglien is the ultimate, I'll play 100% the first 20 sec of my shift then I'll gear up if there is a scoring chance. What about keeping the puck out of his own net? When was the last time you saw his big frame race into the picture to get in front of his own net? These are Noel's type of players and obviously Chevy's as well. So I agree with your statement but disagree that we're weeding these guys out. We're adding to the problem.
I'd break down further why I think the above post (#16) is rubbish, but I think it mainly comes down to common sense. You've got it or you don't. I will ask however that some of the baseless speculation be removed unless it can be verified. Where did Burmistrov say or hint he was "ticked with the organization"?
Wheeler for a second? Come on.
I'm beginning to believe you may be Steve Tambellini. This is very much in the vein of young players and especially picks are always better than proven talent.
Do you know how the Oiler got their good young forwards?
Because they were bottom feeders for 5 years.
I kind of like Schief, Trouba, Lowry, Kosmachuk, Olsen. I think our drafts are just fine. Time will tell but I really like some of the guys we picked up in some of the later rounds.
I am originally from Winnipeg and I love saying that. Getting the Jets back is a cool thing because I went to games when they were good in the 70s and 80s, and even a year or two in the 1990s.
I want to watch the team succeed and I don't think what they did in their first year was successful. We overachieved and I will say it, buckled under the pressure at the end of the season. This year, we've done nothing to fix the problems on the PP, PK, find consistent scoring, fix the massive defensive leaks and address our goaltending. Our coach can't motivate the players and the GM has done very little to make any significant impact.
We're early in the year and we can right the sinking ship. Why repair the holes when the sink is old and broken. It's a terrible analogy I know...
The Oilers were bottom feeders for a reason. They traded away anything and everything to rebuild. Now, they are a playoff team three years later. That whole time, the fans have not abandoned them - they knew what was happening. Winnipeg fans will not abandon the team but they want to see some change, Anything!
Young players are fun to watch. It will kill me if this team gets rid of Burmi, Kane or Bogo without getting a lot in return. They are the only 3 players I think are stars in this league. The rest are simply good to marginal players on any other club.
I want the team to succeed but we are going in the wrong direction. Pavelec should have never got that contract. This offseason will be the determining factor for me (and many others). IF we are re-signing Hainsey to some 1 yr deal and Wheeler to a 3 yr deal, I think this rebuild will take a decade, if it even happens. We are WORSE off now than before the team moved from Atlanta. You may not want to believe it but we've had two drafts and counting .... look at all the other teams playing their draft picks. Teams are getting younger, not older like us. Then Chevy has the nerve to say we're building through the draft to get younger? Really?
Baseless speculation?? Really? No offence, but everything written here is opinion, they aren't empirically based numerical facts using the scientific method. Burmi was upset last year (there are media reports to suggest that). This year, he's got a lot of ice time and playing all over the place. Do you think a coach does that to great players? Also consider Noel has no idea what he's doing.
Wheeler for a second is a good deal. Fans are drinking the TNSE koolaid and I can't fault anyone for that. The Jets are back but fans are over hyping the value of the players. Wheeler was a first round dud in Boston. We got him and Stuart for our 2 duds in the draft = a lazy Dman and a small speedster. Stuart was still the best part of that deal. Wheeler is a third line player at best. So is Ladd. They get points because they are getting 17-20 min a night. They are also overpaid. No one is taking that kind of salary on for 3-4 line players. Those are players that can be found within their AHL affiliates unless they need them for a playoff run.
I appreciate the compliment - Steve T. is a nice guy and a good GM. He's also gotten something for nothing on many occasions. We can't say that about Chevy yet.
They can only hope so, as they soon won't be able to afford said young talent.
Not everything is baseless speculation, nor is it allowed under the blanket statement, "it's my opinion." I'd suggest you look at the rules of these forums.
You also can't just give third liners minutes and expect them to produce at the pace Ladd and Wheeler have. There's also statistics to prove this, but I'm guessing you're someone who doesn't believe in statistics.
Going to save my breath here anyways, if you think that Stuart is better than Wheeler I'll save my time.
This is one of those "could-have-been this" and "will be that" threads that go nowhere fast.
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