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03-03-2007, 11:56 AM
  #34
BigE
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edge View Post
Be perfectly honest with you I don't think that's the problem here. I think that's the media's juicy story but I don't think that's the real problem here. The problem here isn't attitude, it's talent. Simply put this team never had a second line center, never had a good defense and never had scoring from the bottom lines.


I don't care if this team is running a boot camp or day care, if you're struggling to get scoring outside of 4 guys and don't have a defense to back it up, you're screwed.

The real problem here is that the NY reporters, like they do with everything else, loves to turn sports into tabloid trash. It's gotten to the point where more than ever the NY media is canablizing it's stars. From ARod to Jagr to whoever, there's more fiction in their work their research. Maybe I'm jaded from working with them for so many years but when stories start looking eerily similar (Arod and Jeter, Jagr and Shanny, etc.) I starts to scream of the same old BS to me.
Looking back at my post I don't think I stated or implied that Jagr was the only, and most important problem, with the Rangers. He's just one of them.

The reason I chose to talk about Jagr is just because this happens to be a Jagr thread.

To some extent, yeah, the media in New York are tough on their stars, but I don't think my wording was terribly suggestive of an all-out spat between the Jagr and Shanahan. Edge, you've even commented yourself that it's a pretty tense atmosphere and that's really all that I'm getting at.

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Their is no war and plenty of teams win with stubborn stars. However plenty of teams don't win if they no one can score. With all due respect to Nylander and Straka, their magical chariots revert back to the pumpkins of 60 points without Jagr and Shanahan still doesn't have a center and isn't getting any younger.

Jagr is not the problem, the problem with this team is their defense can't score or defend very well, their checkers can't score, their backup can't stop a puck and their prospects, despite the claims of some, weren't really ready.
That, is where I believe you've largely misinterpreted my entire argument and line of thinking. I'm not focused on the problems with this team, because they're pretty bloody obvious: can't put the puck in the net, can't stop the puck from going in our net, and we don't know how to hold a lead (which is a byproduct of the first two and of the team culture that every person, not just Jagr contributes to).

Jagr is not THE problem, but he is a problem for this club going forward. And again, this is my point.

As much as we need players to build around, I don't think Jagr fits with what we're trying to build as a team. It's very much a "my way or highway" out there and you can see it with everyone he plays with. When he taps his stick he expects the puck and if he doesn't gets pissed to the point where sometimes he starts shouting at his own teammates. This isn't what is best for the future in terms of trying to bring players that are ready into the fold. It stifles everyone's creativity, it lessons their confidence, and as I said earlier it makes a team tremendously one-dimensional.

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If This team doesn't have holes, no one gives a crap because we are winning. But we aren't, so now all the psychoanalyzing, all the guessing, all the theories come out and while everyone is so busy trying to read between the lines they aren't actually paying attention to the statements.
Easy, easy, easy. You know perfectly well that I've never been on the "lets ignore our problems" bandwagon. If you're going to make comments about others you'd best do it in a separate post.

Speaking of reading between the lines though, and perhaps I'm at fault for this too, but you might have done a better job of reading my post instead of generalizing.


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In theory yes, but a 38 (going to be 39) year old player is not a better choice to build around and I say that as a HUGE Shanahan fan. Until this team actually has a top young talent, it's got nothing to build around but mirages, no matter how much nicer they might look from a distance.
I'm not saying we build around Jagr. Quite frankly I don't think we should be building around any one player. Not Shanny, certainly not Jagr, and not anybody.

I'd rather have guys in the dressing room that can help build a team, rather than guys in the dressing room that we're forced to build around.

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I don't think the issue is a team of followers, but at the same time you can't have too many cooks in the kitchen either. I think we are overanalyzing Jagr's play with a bunch of theories about what is going on in his head and the fact is the guy obviously isn't 100% healthy and obviously doesn't have a lot of scoring behind him. Those things to me are obvious, everything else is just overthinking.
But it is an issue of followers. For a guy like "Jagr" to be happy he's got to have people that will do what he says without question. If you refuse to play the way he wishes while you're playing with him he gets angry, shows you up with a look or shake of the head (I know you've seen it), and that is only deconstructive for a hockey club.

Watch Marcel Hossa play. It's like watching a guy walking on egg shells. He's so happy to be on the first line he's doing his best to stay the **** out of Jagr's way, and feed him the puck EVERY opportunity he gets.

If Hossa represents the young player in any of the countless potential examples we might see in the next few years, is that what you really want him to be learning? As I said, it's stifling.

Lastly, I will acknowledge and agree that you can't have too many strong personalities on a team. Too many cook's in the kitchen, as you say, is just asking for trouble. There are some cooks that want to cook, and others that want to run the show. You can't have too many of either. The worst is when you have both in one cook - a Jagr for example.

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Now if a killer deal for Jagr came up, sure I'd trade him. But you're not going to get a young stud for him. You're going to get late first round picks (because afterall a team drafting at the top of the draft doesn't want Jagr and a team that is trying to acquire a final piece isn't planning to draft very high).

In theory it all makes sense if we're getting top ten picks and young players, but for a 35 year old Jagr that's not going to happen so that theory goes out the window. To me it's far easier to try and get a better defense (or build one) and try and add some depth than it is to tear the whole thing down again, get some not so amazing picks and try and replace the production that Jagr brings.
The point isn't to trade him and try to get something for him, really. I'm not so much caught up in the package as I am caught up in just getting him off the team. That, I believe, is going to allow us to move forward a lot more quickly than keeping him here to bridge the gap, which will ultimately continue on for longer than most of us would like. You follow me here? This is another point I want to emphasize, and I'm sure you know what I mean.

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Not every team in the league has a complete package superstar/leader. Sometimes instead of trying to make everything perfect you simply go out and try to maximize your strengths and minimize your weakness. This team has not done that yet.

Get some defense, get a healthy Jagr, get some scoring depth and I think we can make a more accurate test for what the problem is. Without those elements, we're just not working with everything we need to make a fair statement.
I don't disagree that those are things that would help this team. However, getting rid of Jagr might get us further in terms of long term outlooks and that's what I'm concentrating on.

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