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07-30-2012, 12:27 PM
the random dude
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Join Date: Jan 2010
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Originally Posted by DAChampion View Post
In most things in life it is to better to plan, to be active, than to simply be reactive.

The problem with trying to compete every year when starting from a position of weakness, where "compete" is defined by the low bar of making the playoffs, is that you are at an extremely high risk of ending up like Toronto, Edmonton, and Calgary. You end up regressing a little bit every year, a slow painful death, because your core is getting older, slowly, and you're not replacing them with enough youth. Once you fall into tankdom by that route, you're no longer discussing 1-year surgical tanks. You're trapped into thinking about 5-year rebuilds like those teams did or will do, and you have little control over your destiny.

This season is already a wash for me. We're not competing for the cup. Period. I don't care if we make the playoffs and lose in the 1st round -- that has no value whatsoever.

It's important to identify the difference between planning ahead and reacting to a weak position. Here are some:
- Budaj plays for 20-25 games rather than 10. Actually, Price should never play 70 games imo, it's bad strategy to burn out your star.
- Bourque, Gomez, Kaberle are given privileged minutes to try and maximize their trade value. Under no circumstance do you do this if you're trying to claw your way to 8th place. Putting Gomez and Bourque on the power play is a rebuilding/tanking move.
- Once the inevitable injuries happen on defense, do not go out and trade away 2nd rounder, 4th rounder, etc to patch the hole. You first try and use Hamilton cal-ups. If Subban goes down for 30 games, do not trade a 1st rounder to New Jersey for Marek Zidlicky (or whatever), which is what you do if you buy into the theory of league parity and that simply making the playoffs qualifies you as a "winner". First give a 5-game callup to Beaulieu, then 5 games to Tinordi, then 5 games to Weber, then 5 games to Ellis, etc. It will help their long-term development, even though it wil almost certainly cost the team games as these players are not ready. They'll have to be sheltered in their call-ups. The end effect will be to increase their motivation for when they return to Hamilton.

Finally, I wish to call BS on the slogan of "league parity". There is a massive gulf between teams like the New York Rangers, Los Angeles Kings, Vancouver Canucks, Pittsburgh Penguins at the top and teams like the Montreal Canadiens, Toronto Maple Leafs and Columbus Blue Jackets at the bottom.
I've enjoyed reading your commentary.

I think the big thing to remember is that doing in-depth analysis and thinking about the hockey team and debating it with others who find holes in your ideas makes you a more knowledgeable fan of the game.

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