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"Looking back at the Thrashers and Predators"

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Old
12-29-2004, 10:22 AM
  #1
vopatsrash
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"Looking back at the Thrashers and Predators"

USA Today's Hockey Rewind

NASHVILLE PREDATORS

Franchise notes: The Predators joined the league in 1998, with David Poile manning the general manager's seat. Poile, who was known during his years with the Washington Capitals as a GM as conservative as Rush Limbaugh, has slowly built the Predators into a pesky, hard-working bunch. The team is a lunch-pail group of the first order, and is probably the toughest (and, at times, the dirtiest) team in the league. They would have fit in well in the old Norris Division of the late 1980s. The crowds in Nashville are catching on quickly, and the next few seasons should be very interesting for this team and its fans, now that they've finally tasted a bit of what the NHL playoffs are all about.

Inaugural season: 1998-99

Number of years in the league: Six

Number of times in the playoffs: One

Final appearances: None

Stanley Cups: None

Best season: 2003-2004 (38-29-11-4, 91 points)

Worst season: 1998-99 (28-47-7, 63 points)

Number of coaches: One, Barry Trotz, who looks a little like Boris Badunov from the old Rocky and Bullwinkle cartoons.

Best coach: Trotz

Worst coach: Trotz ("He was the best of coaches, he was the worst of coaches … ")

Best captain: Tom Fitzgerald (1998-2001)

Worst captain: Greg Johnson (2002-present)

Best trade: On Halloween, 1998, the Predators got Cliff Ronning and Richard Lintner from Phoenix for future considerations. Ronning is still the Predators' all-time assist leader, and remains on many of the team's career leaders lists.

Worst trade: On June 27, 1998, before the Preds had even played their first game, they traded their first- and second-round picks to San Jose for the Sharks' first- and third- round picks. The Preds got David Legwand and Geoff Koch out of the deal, but the Sharks got Brad Stuart and Jonathan Cheechoo. Had Koch amounted to anything, this trade might have been a wash, but as it stands now, San Jose wins.

Best first-round draft pick: It'll eventually be Scottie Upshall (2002), but for now it's probably Legwand (1998).

Worst first-round draft pick: Probably Brian Finley in 1999.

Loves to play: Columbus (12-7-1-1)

Hates to play: St. Louis (8-19-4-2)

Ten best players: David Legwand, Cliff Ronning, Scott Walker, Scott Hartnell, Greg Johnson, Kimmo Timonen, Denis Arkhipov, Tom Fitzgerald, Karlis Skrastins, Mike Dunham




Of course, any article that includes a "Ten best Preds" that includes Denis Arkhipov and Mike Dunham, but leaves out Tomas Vokoun should be taken with a grain of salt. You could arguably insert AJ and Vladdy over Arkhipov. OK, you could arguably insert Adam Hall, Martin Erat, Kjellberg, and a month and a half of Sully over Arkhipov.

So, who are the top 10 Preds? how about a solid top 5 of...

Walker
Vokoun
Ronning
Timonen
Johnson

and a debatable 6-10 of...

Legwand
Dunham
Orszagh
Skrastins
Fitzgerald

with Johansson and Hartnell barely missing the cut and Adam Hall and Erat certainly poised to eventually break that list. I think a solid argument could be made for top 10 status for any of those 12-14. of course, Sullivan would immediately qualify as a top 10 pred in terms of ability and impact, but I am not including him since he has yet to (and may never) play a full season as a Pred. Also, I feel like I'm forgetting someone.

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12-29-2004, 11:01 AM
  #2
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Nice link, but it's so easy to pick apart. I guess that's why it's the USAToday.

Some quotes I find funny from the Atlanta portion

Quote:
Don Waddell, from the start was to build for the future, and take the inevitable lumps along the way. A combination of savvy hiring decisions ... and smart drafting (Waddell made Ilya Kovalchuk the first Russian player ever selected first overall in the NHL draft in 2001, a year after drafting whiz kid Dany Heatley second overall) has turned the Thrashers into a team with a very bright future.
Giving him credit for drafting either of those two is ludicrous. Anyone who didn't take Kovalchuk is a Canadian homer in love with Spezza. And Heatley should have gone first overall but was gifted to Atlanta thanks to Mad Dog Mike. Same deal with Lehtonen. There have been three picks in Atlanta's history where they didn't have to make any choice but to trade down. In those picks, they landed studs. I give them credit for putting themselves in that situation, but I just can't give Waddell credit for doing the same thing any other NHL observer would do.

The three picks where he had to make a decision on whom to take? Well, the results are spotty. Patrik Stefan (1st/99) was hardly the consensus top pick what with his concussion history. Waddell had to choose whom to draft here. The same can be said for Coburn (8th/2003) and Valabik (10th/2004). Neither have been exactly stellar since being drafted, but both could have bright futures.

A true test of a GM is how well he drafts outside of the top 10. Anyone and everyone finds winners in the first 10. But the Thrashers have only 2 NHLers they drafted outside of the top 2 on their hockey team right now: Garnett Exelby (8th round, 1999) and Pasi Nurminen (6th round, 2001). In that same span (and we'll include 1998 draftees that made it to the NHL by year 2003 (to make it even), the Predators brought in Karlis Skrastins (9th round, 1998), Denis Arkhipov (3rd round, 1998), Adam Hall (2nd round, 1999), Martin Erat (7th round 1999), Jordin Tootoo (4th round, 2001). And this doesn't include players like Shishkanov, Hutchinson, and Pivko who might very well have played on the Thrashers last year if available to them. My point is that the Waddell (and many other GM's) get credit for picking top picks when there is no decision to be made, but people look past pathetic drafting records outside the top 10. Well, enough of that pet peeve.

Quote:
The Thrashers are just two or three quality players from turning into a legitimate playoff threat.
Geez, how many teams in the league aren't in this situation? Maybe only the Pittsburgh Penguins don't fit that bill but you add 3 quality players to any team and they are going to become legitimate threats.

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12-29-2004, 12:10 PM
  #3
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maybe I'm wrong but I don't think the ronning trade is a better trade than sully for two 2nd's. essentially, that trade landed us in the playoffs. wether it was strictly due to sully's offensive contributions or the move just sparking the team, who is quite sure, but it did something.

I also think the dunham for murray, zidlicky, kloucek was more important. firstly, because of zidlicky, but most importantly because it gave vokie the chance to step up and prove he is one of the top netminders in the league.

It really depends on how you define "best" trade.

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12-29-2004, 12:19 PM
  #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crossxcheck
maybe I'm wrong but I don't think the ronning trade is a better trade than sully for two 2nd's. essentially, that trade landed us in the playoffs. wether it was strictly due to sully's offensive contributions or the move just sparking the team, who is quite sure, but it did something.

I also think the dunham for murray, zidlicky, kloucek was more important. firstly, because of zidlicky, but most importantly because it gave vokie the chance to step up and prove he is one of the top netminders in the league.

It really depends on how you define "best" trade.
I agree; I think the Dunham trade is the best trade. I do think the Ronning trade was a bit better than the Sully trade because what we gave up...One could also throw in the Kimmo for FCs trade. Although Legwand is my favorite player; I think that one our 2 D-men Studs will be our best first rounder rather than Upshall as the article states.


Last edited by tulsytrid1: 12-29-2004 at 03:22 PM.
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12-29-2004, 01:10 PM
  #5
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it could also be argued that the Karalahti trade was worse than the 1998 draft pick trade.

I can't remember who we drafted with the draft pick we got from LA in addition to Drinkalahti (i think it was a 4th rounder), so maybe that trade didn't work out as badly as it seemed. It also had the side benefit of taking away Legwand's crutch in Cliffy.

And, it also caused a poster on the official board (can't remember his/her name) to about lose his/her ****e for about 3-4 years.

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12-29-2004, 02:01 PM
  #6
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12-29-2004, 02:37 PM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vopatsrash
it could also be argued that the Karalahti trade was worse than the 1998 draft pick trade.

I can't remember who we drafted with the draft pick we got from LA in addition to Drinkalahti (i think it was a 4th rounder), so maybe that trade didn't work out as badly as it seemed. It also had the side benefit of taking away Legwand's crutch in Cliffy.

And, it also caused a poster on the official board (can't remember his/her name) to about lose his/her ****e for about 3-4 years.
Los Angeles Kings traded Jere Karalahti and a 4th round selection (Teemu Lassila) in 2003 to the Nashville Predators for Cliff Ronning.

Looking back this wasn't all that bad of a deal, Ronning was clearly passed his prime. Karalahti was a risk but if he wasn't there's no way would could get a player of his talent for a washed up Ronning.

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12-29-2004, 03:01 PM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by triggrman
Los Angeles Kings traded Jere Karalahti and a 4th round selection (Teemu Lassila) in 2003 to the Nashville Predators for Cliff Ronning.

Looking back this wasn't all that bad of a deal, Ronning was clearly passed his prime. Karalahti was a risk but if he wasn't there's no way would could get a player of his talent for a washed up Ronning.
lassila is the wild card in this trade and why it still cann't be called a total bust quite yet...this guy could still beat out finley a year or two from now

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12-29-2004, 03:02 PM
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Here's a few of the "Best trades"

Los Angeles Kings traded Jan Vopat and Kimmo Timonen to the Nashville Predators for future considerations.

Nashville Predators traded future considerations for Sebestian Bordeleau. The "considerations" was that Nashville selected Tomas Vokoun in the entry draft. They wanted Vokoun out so bad they threw in an extra player.

Nashville Predators traded Drake Berehowsky to the Vancouver Canucks for a 2nd round selection (previously acquired - Timofei Shishkanov) in 2001.

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12-29-2004, 03:20 PM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by triggrman
Here's a few of the "Best trades"

Los Angeles Kings traded Jan Vopat and Kimmo Timonen to the Nashville Predators for future considerations.

Nashville Predators traded future considerations for Sebestian Bordeleau. The "considerations" was that Nashville selected Tomas Vokoun in the entry draft. They wanted Vokoun out so bad they threw in an extra player.

Nashville Predators traded Drake Berehowsky to the Vancouver Canucks for a 2nd round selection (previously acquired - Timofei Shishkanov) in 2001.
Ya I was amazed Poile got a 2nd rounder for Drake.

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12-29-2004, 05:21 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tulsytrid1
Ya I was amazed Poile got a 2nd rounder for Drake.
And not just any 2nd rounder, one of the first picks in the second round.

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12-29-2004, 05:26 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by triggrman
Nashville Predators traded future considerations for Sebestian Bordeleau. The "considerations" was that Nashville selected Tomas Vokoun in the entry draft. They wanted Vokoun out so bad they threw in an extra player.
This is my favorite Preds transaction to date. We gave up nothing and got a great energy guy who was key in several milestone victories (first OT win against NJ, etc.) and our franchise goaltender. And we did so in an expansion draft lacking any noticeable talent (at the time) save for Dunham, Johnson, and Boughner (that we would actually realize).

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12-29-2004, 06:09 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeyClause
This is my favorite Preds transaction to date. We gave up nothing and got a great energy guy who was key in several milestone victories (first OT win against NJ, etc.) and our franchise goaltender. And we did so in an expansion draft lacking any noticeable talent (at the time) save for Dunham, Johnson, and Boughner (that we would actually realize).
Dulzhok made reference that Hejduk was available in the expansion draft. Whether or not that is true, I have no idea. Still, its not like Hejduk was a huge prospect of the Avs at the time, or he wouldn't have been left exposed (if this is indeed true).

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12-29-2004, 09:18 PM
  #14
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on the whole, any preds fan worth his salt will find large chunks of that article laughable.

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12-30-2004, 12:02 AM
  #15
triggrman
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He was left unprotected as was Chris Drury.

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12-30-2004, 12:06 AM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by triggrman
He was left unprotected as was Chris Drury.
Is there a list for this? I ask because Hejduk was great in the Czech league that year so it wasn't as if he was nothing. Maybe there was a fear that he had no desire to play in North America.

I am also curious as to why a 21-22 year old European and a 21-22 year old American have to even be protected by their respective clubs? How much different is the Expansion draft from the waiver draft?

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12-30-2004, 12:11 AM
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by triggrman
He was left unprotected as was Chris Drury.
I don't think Drury was available upon further inspection. Using the 2000 draft rules (the only ones I could find), any first/second year pro is not available for the draft. Any unsigned prospect is not available either unless that pick was a European selected in the draft 4 years previous. Drury was about to enter his rookie year and would not have been available. Hejduk, however, was likely unsigned and since he was drafted 4 years earlier (1994), he would need to be protected or left exposed.

Here is confirmation.

http://www.hockeynut.com/9899/exp98protect.html

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12-30-2004, 12:18 AM
  #18
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Some noticeable players available that didn't end up on our team...Adrian Aucoin, Arturs Irbe, Brett Hull, Paul Coffey, Sean Burke, Kim Johnsson, Dick Tarnstrom, Dave Andreychuk, Phillipe Boucher, Jaroslav Modry, Marek Malik.

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12-30-2004, 12:33 AM
  #19
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1998 Expansion Draft Protected and Available Lists
Anaheim
PROTECTED LIST
Travis Green (C)
Paul Kariya (L)
Josef Marha (C)
Jim McKenzie (L)
Jeff Nielsen (R)
Steve Rucchin (C)
Teemu Selanne (R)
Dave Karpa (D)
Jason Marshall (D)
Jamie Pushor (D)
Pavel Trnka (D)
Guy Hebert (G)
Patrick Lalime (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Shawn Antoski (L)
Ted Drury (C)
Peter Leboutillier (R)
Eric Lecompte (L)
Tommi Miettinen * (C)
Richard Park (C)
Craig Reichert (R)
Tomas Sandstrom (R)
Brent Severyn (L)
Jeremy Stevenson (L)
Kevin Todd (C)
Bob Wren (L)
Scott Young (R)
Drew Bannister (D)
Doug Houda (D)
Nikolai Tsulygin (D)
Mikhail Shtalenkov (G)
Boston
PROTECTED LIST
Jason Allison (C)
Rob DiMaio (L)
Ted Donato (L)
Steve Heinze (R)
Dmitri Khristich (R)
Tim Taylor (C)
Landon Wilson (R)
Ray Bourque (D)
Kyle McLaren (D)
Don Sweeney (D)
Darren Van Impe (D)
Byron Dafoe (G)
Robbie Tallas (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Ken Baumgartner (L)
P-C Drouin (L)
Bill McCauley (C)
Trent McCleary (C)
Kirk Nielsen (R)
Andre Roy (L)
Mike Sullivan (L)
Dean Chynoweth (D)
Dave Ellett (D)
Grant Ledyard (D)
Dean Malkoc (D)
Milt Mastad (D)
Anders Myrvold (D)
Charles Paquette (D)
Barry Richter (D)
Jon Rohloff (D)
Andrei Sapozhnikov * (D)
Yevgeny Shaldybin (D)
Andrei Yakhanov (D)
Jim Carey (G)
Joakim Persson * (G)


Buffalo
PROTECTED LIST
Donald Audette (R)
Matthew Barnaby (R)
Curtis Brown (L)
Michal Grosek (L)
Brian Holzinger (C)
Michael Peca (C)
Derek Plante (C)
Wayne Primeau (C)
Geoff Sanderson (L)
Miroslav Satan (L)
Darryl Shannon (D)
Richard Smehlik (D)
Mike Wilson (D)
Jason Woolley (D)
Alexei Zhitnik (D)
Dominik Hasek (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Randy Burridge (L)
Paul Kruse (L)
Scott Nichol (C)
Rob Ray (R)
Dixon Ward (R)
Bob Boughner (D)
Mike Hurlbut (D)
Sergei Klimentiev (D)
Rumun Ndur (D)
Shayne Wright (D)
Kay Whitmore (G)
Calgary
PROTECTED LIST
Valeri Bure (R)
Andrew Cassels (C)
Nisse Ekman * (L)
Theoren Fleury (R)
Ladislav Kohn (R)
Marty McInnis (L)
Michael Nylander (C)
Dave Roche (L)
Cory Stillman (C)
Jason Wiemer (L)
Tommy Albelin (D)
Jamie Allison (D)
Sami Helenius (D)
Cale Hulse (D)
Todd Simpson (D)
Ken Wregget (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Bobby Brown (C)
Aaron Gavey (C)
Mattias Johansson * (R)
Jorgen Jonsson * (C)
Andreas Karlsson * (C)
Valeri Karpov (R)
Esa Keskinen * (C)
Jasper Mattsson (R)
Marty Murray (C)
Mike Peluso (L)
Ron Stern (R)
Ed Ward (L)
Sergei Zolotov * (R)
Joel Bouchard (D)
Eric Charron (D)
Kevin Dahl (D)
Jim Dowd (D)
Johan Finnstrom * (D)
Keith McCambridge (D)
James Patrick (D)
Pavel Rajnoha * (D)
Dimitri Riabykin * (D)
Tyler Moss (G)
Dwayne Roloson (G)
Rick Tabaracci (G)


Carolina
PROTECTED LIST
Nelson Emerson (R)
Martin Gelinas (L)
Stu Grimson (L)
Sami Kapanen (R)
Robert Kron (R)
Jeff O'Neill (C)
Keith Primeau (C)
Gary Roberts (L)
Ray Sheppard (R)
Adam Burt (D)
Steve Chiasson (D)
Kevin Haller (D)
Curtis Leschyshyn (D)
Nolan Pratt (D)
Glen Wesley (D)
Trevor Kidd (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Kevin Brown (R)
Jeff Daniels (L)
Kevin Dineen (R)
Dimitri Gorenko * (L)
Steve Leach (R)
Kent Manderville (C)
Paul Ranheim (L)
Steven Rice (R)
Brian Secord (C)
Kevin Smyth (L)
Joacim Esbjors * (D)
Sean Hill (D)
Marek Malik (D)
Jason McBain (D)
Mike Fountain (G)
Pat Jablonski (G)
Manny Legace (G)
Chicago
PROTECTED LIST
Tony Amonte (R)
Eric Daze (L)
Steve Dubinsky (C)
Chad Kilger (C)
Sergei Krivokrasov (R)
Ethan Moreau (L)
Bob Probert (L)
Jeff Shantz (C)
Alexei Zhamnov (C)
Chris Chelios (D)
Cam Russell (D)
Gary Suter (D)
Michal Sykora (D)
Eric Weinrich (D)
Jeff Hackett (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Greg Johnson (C)
David Ling (R)
Reid Simpson (L)
Roger Johansson (D)
Alain Nasreddine (D)
Jeff Ricciardi (D)
Trent Yawney (D)
Marc Lamothe (G)
Chris Terreri (G)
Andrei Trefilov (G)


Colorado
PROTECTED LIST
Rene Corbet (L)
Adam Deadmarsh (R)
Shean Donovan (R)
Peter Forsberg (C)
Keith Jones (R)
Valeri Kamensky (L)
Eric Lacroix (L)
Claude Lemieux (R)
Joe Sakic (C)
Stephane Yelle (C)
Adam Foote (D)
Jon Klemm (D)
Sylvain Lefebvre (D)
Aaron Miller (D)
Sandis Ozolinsh (D)
Patrick Roy (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Tom Fitzgerald (R)
Milan Hejduk * (R)
Mikael Johansson * (C)
Jari Kurri (L)
Martin Lamarche (L)
Francois Leroux (L)
Christian Matte (R)
Jeff Odgers (R)
Warren Rychel (L)
Alexei Gusarov (D)
Uwe Krupp (D)
Pascal Trepanier (D)
Craig Billington (G)
Petr Franek (G)
Dallas
PROTECTED LIST
Bob Bassen (C)
Mike Keane (R)
Jamie Langenbrunner (L)
Jere Lehtinen (R)
Grant Marshall (R)
Mike Modano (C)
Joe Nieuwendyk (C)
Brian Skrudland (C)
Pat Verbeek (R)
Shawn Chambers (D)
Sergey Gusev (D)
Derian Hatcher (D)
Richard Matvichuk (D)
Darryl Sydor (D)
Sergei Zubov (D)
Ed Belfour (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Greg Adams (L)
Guy Carbonneau (C)
Patrick Cote (L)
Peter Douris (R)
Benoit Hogue (L)
Mike Kennedy (R)
Jeffrey Mitchell (C)
Dave Reid (L)
Kevin Sawyer (L)
Chris Tancill (L)
Dan Keczmer (D)
Craig Ludwig (D)
Craig Muni (D)
Evgeny Petrochinin * (D)
Manny Fernandez (G)
Jordan Willis (G)


Detroit
PROTECTED LIST
Mathieu Dandenault (R)
Kris Draper (C)
Sergei Fedorov (C)
Vyacheslav Kozlov (L)
Martin Lapointe (R)
Igor Larionov (C)
Kirk Maltby (L)
Darren McCarty (R)
Brendan Shanahan (L)
Steve Yzerman (C)
Anders Eriksson (D)
Yan Golubovsky (D)
Nicklas Lidstrom (D)
Larry Murphy (D)
Aaron Ward (D)
Chris Osgood (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Pavel Agarkov * (R)
Doug Brown (R)
Sylvain Cloutier (C)
Brent Gilchrist (L)
Mike Knuble (R)
Joe Kocur (R)
Toivo Suursoo* (R)
Viacheslav Fetisov (D)
Jamie Macoun (D)
Dmitri Mironov (D)
Bob Rouse (D)
Kevin Hodson (G)
Norm Maracle (G)
Edmonton
PROTECTED LIST
Josef Beranek (L)
Kelly Buchberger (R)
Bill Guerin (R)
Mats Lindgren (C)
Todd Marchant (L)
Dean McAmmond (L)
Rem Murray (L)
Ryan Smyth (L)
Doug Weight (C)
Valeri Zelepukin (L)
Drake Berehowsky (D)
Greg de Vries (D)
Roman Hamrlik (D)
Boris Mironov (D)
Reijo Ruotsalainen (D)
Eric Fichaud (G)

AVAILABLE LIST
Dennis Bonvie (R)
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Old
01-10-2005, 04:59 PM
  #20
dulzhok
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Missing out on Hejduk is probably the biggest blemish on Poile's record with the Predators. It wasn't a no brainer, but there was very good evidence that Hejduk had skills. He was ripping up the Czech league and was even on the '98 gold medal winning Czech team with NHLers. Poile has got to be kicking himself for this one.

The biggest thing that has hurt the Predators in the expansion is not losing enough. We were bad in the first 5 years, but we were always just good enough to miss out on drafting the true franchise players. In the meantime, Atlanta was losing a little bit more making no-brainer draft decisions like Heatley, Kovalchuk, and Lehtonen.

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Old
01-10-2005, 05:18 PM
  #21
barrytrotzsneck
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dulzhok
Missing out on Hejduk is probably the biggest blemish on Poile's record with the Predators. It wasn't a no brainer, but there was very good evidence that Hejduk had skills. He was ripping up the Czech league and was even on the '98 gold medal winning Czech team with NHLers. Poile has got to be kicking himself for this one.

The biggest thing that has hurt the Predators in the expansion is not losing enough. We were bad in the first 5 years, but we were always just good enough to miss out on drafting the true franchise players. In the meantime, Atlanta was losing a little bit more making no-brainer draft decisions like Heatley, Kovalchuk, and Lehtonen.

we lack the dynamo prospect like kovalchuk, but i like our team top to bottom much better than theirs or columbus's for that matter. Our later round drafting has been MUCH better than theirs. Both teams have firepower to spare, but no defense. Atlanta made a HUGE mistake in Valabik, and i'm not impressed with Coburn, either. Klesla is looking more and more like a bust as well for Columbus. Meanwhile, we've got a future blueline that's the envy of every team in the league and a couple of dynamic snipers coming up that...while no Kovalchuk or Zherdev...can get the job done. It feels more and more like we went the Ottawa route...while Atlanta and Columbus are pissing away the Florida and Atlanta route, moreso Atlanta than Columbus.

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Old
01-10-2005, 11:45 PM
  #22
dulzhok
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nomorekids
we lack the dynamo prospect like kovalchuk, but i like our team top to bottom much better than theirs or columbus's for that matter. Our later round drafting has been MUCH better than theirs. Both teams have firepower to spare, but no defense. Atlanta made a HUGE mistake in Valabik, and i'm not impressed with Coburn, either. Klesla is looking more and more like a bust as well for Columbus. Meanwhile, we've got a future blueline that's the envy of every team in the league and a couple of dynamic snipers coming up that...while no Kovalchuk or Zherdev...can get the job done. It feels more and more like we went the Ottawa route...while Atlanta and Columbus are pissing away the Florida and Atlanta route, moreso Atlanta than Columbus.
I agree, Poile and scouts (probably more the scouts than Poile) have done well in non-1st round selections. Better than ATL or CBJ.

Poile also grabbed some nice stuff in the expansion (Walker, Vokoun, Timonen, with Kimmo being a side deal). But to be fair, we did have first dibs at these guys. In that regard, we had an advantage over ATL in the expansion draft.

While I too like our lineup from top to bottom better than ATL or CBJ, I sure as heck wouldn't mind having Heatley over Hartnell or Nash over Upshall.

If I was GM, I wouldn't have necessarily lost intentionally the first few years, but I would have filled up our roster with projects. Whereas guys like Ronning, Johnson, Kjellberg, Houlder, etc were getting a ton of icetime, I would've had a rotating door of projects, hoping to land a St.Louis or Stillman or Steve Sullivan for that matter (Sullivan was a wavier wire pick up in '99). We probably would've lost more the first few years, giving us better draft position, but we also may have uncovered a gem or two in the process.

To an extent we did that, but we always gave the ball to mediocre veterans when it mattered. That's why we were always just good enough not to get the best draft picks.

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Old
01-11-2005, 07:41 AM
  #23
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personally i feel poile did a marvelous job balancing putting a competitive team on the ice against building for the future...it's one thing to say "hey we should have lost more and we'd be in better position now" in hindsight...but where was that idea in season three when we were actually fighting for that 8th round spot as late as February?.....poile and management had so many things to consider...1)they had to acquire young future players and picks true..2)they had to build a fan base from nothing,and the only way to do this was to be semi competitive from day one-knowing the novelty of hockey would wear thin in and of itself by year 3 if they weren't competitive...3)those "mediocre vets" were an absolute critical thing in teaching the youngsters 'how' to play nhl hockey in my mind-letting forcing younsters to totally carry a losing load like they do in so many other new teams...ruining many of them forever....hard to argue with the development of so many young starters we still have...

management did exactly what they set out to do with the 5 year plan in my opinion(ok it was in 6 years but so what)...we are much deeper than the two other clubs thrown out in this discussion-ATL and CLB....i also like poile's plan of building from the baseline-i.e. defense first versus the offense first concept by most startup organizations...i truely believe this will seperate us from other 4-5 year franchises for years to come

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Old
01-11-2005, 05:41 PM
  #24
dulzhok
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RE: THE NEED TO BE COMPETITIVE

We aren't talking about the difference between night and day here. We are talking about losing a couple of more games. For example, in 2002, we were one loss away from picking at the #4 spot, which would've been Pitkanen. I doubt a few more losses would have had an impact on establishing our fan base. Also, judging by our attendance in 2003, we weren't icing a team that was competitive enough to establish a strong fan base anyway.

I'm not saying that I wouldn't have acquired Ronning, Houlder, Johnson, etc. They did provide leadership for the younger players. But I might not have leaned on them as heavily as Trotz did.

Also, I'm not saying he should've given icetime to 18 year olds. I would've given time to "project players" that had already spent time in the NHL, but were getting shafted by their clubs. To an extent, we did this (i.e. WALKER), but I would've done more of it. Just some ideas.


Last edited by dulzhok: 01-11-2005 at 05:46 PM.
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