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02-13-2011, 12:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Xspyrit View Post
I think some posters around here have a bit of a misconception problem. You really over-estimate the impact that a new GM has on his team and how long it takes in reality to set in. It takes year before you can see it and it's not as linear as you think.

Basically, whatever the name of the GM would have been, you'd have seen an inevitable decline with Ottawa. It just would have been slower or faster after the Stanley Cup run depending of the GM.

You just can't do anything when you lose key players (due to the cap or other personal problems) like Chara, Redden, Emery, Corvo, Heatley, Havlat, Volchenkov for (almost nothing) and when you have absolutely no quality prospects to replace these guys in some proportion, and in a very long 5 years span!

Only thing you can do is try to patch things up (Kovalev, Kuba, Gonchar, Ruutu, Leclaire, Carkner) and lean on your long time serving members (Fisher, Alfie, Phillips, Kelly, Neil) to do more and more each and every year... But at some point, it comes back to bite you in the ass and those players are unhealthy and tired.

My intent is not to go into another long debate (time is always precious) but what I'm saying is that people expect way too much for GMs, like if it was some sort of Walt Disney miracle movie.

Outside of the Red Wings who have hit so many homeruns at the draft and have a very good developping system, no teams in the NHL has had long time success in today's NHL (outside of Ottawa and NJ maybe)

A GM's role is to put a good scouting department in place and draft/develop players the best they can. After that, when those draft picks become good NHL players, he needs to identify a core and keep the good ones around for several other years (which Murray did after the SC run. Of course you had to show the money to those guys or they would have gone elsewhere). In hindsight, Murray should have traded Heatley at his top-value back then, but who knew what was going to happen? And how would the fans reacted if they traded a back-to-back 50 goals scorer...

So, every year, you need some young prospects to come in a replace aging veterans or guys that would just cost too much to keep around. If you have a hole in your team, you can then sign a UFA or 2, but your key players shouldn't come from the UFA market...

You need those young guns to take place in the line-up and some to develop into future core members and/or key players

That's how you build a NHL team in today's game. And of course, there is the coaching staff and etc. where Murray failed IMO.

Basically, it takes years before you can see a GM's impact, you'll see it when the young guys he brought in are core/key/impact players on the team.

And it's always a matter of timing. The Gonchar signing would have looked a lot better if we still had Heatley, or if we had a NHL coach and a healthy NHL goalie. It would have been great to replace Redden by Gonchar 2 years ago, but Gonchar wasn't available and we didn't have cap space because of that 20M$ pizza line

The timing Murray came in was when the team was scheduled to decline (as Alfie goes, the Sens go). It was only a matter of time. I'm actually glad our GM was Murray and his connections because we could be looking at a full rebuild without all the assets we already have : Spezza, Michalek, Regin, Foligno, Butler, Silfverberg, Karlsson, Rundblad, Cowen, Wiercioch, Lehner, ... Two 1st round picks in 2011

Thankfully to Murray and his staff, we are ahead on the rebuild IMO and we shouldn't rot in hell like the Leafs, Panthers, Islanders, Jackets and maybe even the Oilers

Just for fun :

Spezza vs Gagner
Landeskog (?) vs Hall
Butler vs Eberle
Michalek vs Hemsky
Foligno vs MPS
Regin vs Cogliano
Silvferberg vs Omark

Karlsson vs 2011 first
Cowen vs Smid
Rundblad vs Whitney
Wiercioch vs Marincin
Lee vs Petry
Gryba vs Plante

It's just a matter of who will be better than who
I'm well aware that Murray inherited a tough situation, but his decisions at the NHL level have been nothing short of abysmal. Given the state of our farm, we were going not going to remain a perpetual Cup contender, but there is no reason why we had to miss the playoffs twice in four years, win only two playoff games over that span, and become the 2nd worst team in the league. That's on him.

As for the players you list, most of the league has a young nucleus as good or better than ours. I would take the Panthers', Islanders' and Oilers' youth over ours without thinking twice. We've been bad for 4 years, and have a middling group of prospects to show for it. I can't justify saying he's done a good job, because the results say otherwise. He's a mediocre GM, and his tenure here will be looked back on as somewhere between mediocre and bad, depending on how many of his prospects actually become players.

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