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For the first time, there's a chink in the armor.

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04-07-2010, 07:28 AM
  #1
PHYS251
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For the first time, there's a chink in the armor.

For ten years I've been a Thrashers fan, following this team through its few highs and many lows. Across that stretch of time I've laughed at the disdain that people display when they say that NHL hockey can't survive in the Sun Belt. Not just particular markets--notably Dallas and LA, where it has thrived--but all southern regions. I note to myself how the Islanders' attendance has been awful for years, for example, yet you don't hear cries to move that team.

But after what I witnessed last night, for the first time I wonder if the naysayers just might be on to something. And it KILLS me to say that, but unfortunately they may have a point. Reason being the following: (1) Attendance was barely over 12,000. Folks there should have been a line at the ticket window stretching all the way to Alpharetta. There is simply no excuse for a metro area this size not coming to support their team, on the last week of the season, while we were in the middle of a playoff race, when the team's best former player ever is back in town for the first time. (2) At first I found all the Kovalchuk booing amusing, but the more I think about it, the more I feel that it was just wrong on so many levels. People, he didn't re-sign with them, he was *traded.* The way the fans acted, you couldn't tell the difference. And he repeatedly said that he wanted to play for a winning team. What exactly is so bad about that? Really, signs across the arena should been thanking Kovy for being one of the few very good things that's happened to this franchise, not deriding him for being some sort of traitor.

Now just to clarify, I don't mean that one poor attendance night or one poor showing of sportsmanship qualify as reasons to move the team. Far from it. Instead, for me they were the straws that broke the camel's back. The attendance thing especially, this would have been unheard of in a strong hockey market such as Detroit, Minnesota, or Philly. It just doesn't look good when we pull something like we did last night.

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04-07-2010, 07:30 AM
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The Kovy booing was uncalled for. Yeah, he should get booed if he scores or if he does something shady, but not the traditional Heater booing....

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04-07-2010, 07:48 AM
  #3
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Look, this isn't rocket science. For the last three seasons this organization has done it's best to drive people away from the arena. The sole purpose of the org right now appears to be winning the PR war regarding expectations. Waddell and the Thrashers did their best to portray Ilya as the bad guy, and it worked.

This is a very poorly run organization, and they do not deserve good attendance. They should not make money the way they run their business.
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04-07-2010, 08:04 AM
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Well, I for one was not booing other than the traditional entire opposing team sucks boo.

Kovy did some good things and some bad things here - same as anyone else. I won't really be pissed at him until he signs with another NHL team for less money than we theoretically offered him.

If it was really about the money and he goes back to Russia for $30mm or whatever that's fine. However, signing for less to play in another NHL city just confirms that "I wanna stay in ATL" statement was, in fact, lying - regardless of how poorly this org is run.

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04-07-2010, 08:09 AM
  #5
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This whole franchise just needs to be gutted: ownership, management, and hell if I was buying this outfit I'd even petition King Gary and his Board of Governors to change the name, logo, and colors of the team as well. This organization is just toxic and needs an absolute fresh start with people who truly care for and understand the game. The best marketing firm, community relations, youth development and MOST importantly, the best General Manager and Coach money can buy need to be brought in.

And then I would line them up in a press conference with all the local channels and say "Here's my commitment to you the fans and the game of "professional hockey" in this market. Say hello to all these wonderful new people - absolutely the best in the business. But I'm warning you now, don't get too fond of them because if we're not in the playoffs in 3 years, -make it 2 years if we're not even close- every one of them is fired and I'll be holding a new presser to introduce the new crew. Losing and mediocrity will NOT BE TOLERATED."


Last edited by Toque-trick: 04-07-2010 at 08:14 AM. Reason: last line
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Old
04-07-2010, 08:22 AM
  #6
BreakTheWallsDown
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No Phys, the naysayers are not on to something. This franchise definitely needs a serious overhaul, but it doesn't deserve to be moved. If our own fans start doubting the teams existence here in Atlanta then who the hell is going to be left to defend them? Don't give them any help. They don't need it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PHYS251
There is simply no excuse for a metro area this size not coming to support their team, on the last week of the season, while we were in the middle of a playoff race, when the team's best former player ever is back in town for the first time.
I really don't understand what some people think the fans owe Kovalchuk. Why should they show up just because he is coming back with another team? It's not like the guy won us a cup or even a single playoff game. I'm not placing the sole blame for that on him but come on... I mean thanks for spending the first part of your career with us but you're on the other team now so who cares? His contract situation was so drawn out that half the fans were pissed off about the situation by the time he was traded anyway.

As for being in the middle of a playoff race, that was a week or two ago. Just looking at the points in the standings before this game started and it was virtually impossible for the Thrashers to make it in anyways. Boston and Philly were not going to be caught by us. There was a slim chance of catching Boston but that would mean them losing basically all the rest of their games. You could hope that Philly would lose the rest of their games as well, fine. But then that means losing 2 of them to the Rangers who are also ahead of us in the standings which then hurts us just as badly as philly winning them anyway.

The time for the fans to show up because "we're in the middle of a playoff race" was 1, 2, even 3 weeks ago. NOT last night.

I just want to say, this forum is really starting to get tough to read. There is so much bellyaching around this place day after day. I don't know how someone is actually supposed to enjoy posting and reading on this forum with all this crap and whining popping up all the time.

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04-07-2010, 09:24 AM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PHYS251 View Post
There is simply no excuse for a metro area this size not coming to support their team, on the last week of the season, while we were in the middle of a playoff race
Don't fool yourself. Our playoff chances have been on life support since the Boston game. We weren't in a "playoff race" with last night's game, we were hanging on for dear life in a conference that has shown the world exactly how crappy it is. We would have long since been eliminated if we were in the west with 81 points.

People here are tired of the mediocrity, and would undoubtedly show up for meaningful games, no matter when they took place. If we burst into the playoffs and win a round or two, you'll have all those fans in that line to Alpharetta, regardless if it's baseball, football, or even hunting season. Regardless of whether the games were played on a Tuesday or a Sunday in the middle of the NFL season. Hell, you'd start to see more and more people making a "sports day" out of Sundays, attending the Falcons game at 1pm, then walking across to Philips for the Thrashers game, undoubtedly starting at 5pm or so.

Don't give us this "chink in the armor" nonsense. If you want to say you feel bad, come out and say it. Me? I want change, and I want it now. And I don't mean a change of city for this Thrashers team, either.

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04-07-2010, 09:42 AM
  #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toque-trick View Post
This whole franchise just needs to be gutted: ownership, management, and hell if I was buying this outfit I'd even petition King Gary and his Board of Governors to change the name, logo, and colors of the team as well. This organization is just toxic and needs an absolute fresh start with people who truly care for and understand the game. The best marketing firm, community relations, youth development and MOST importantly, the best General Manager and Coach money can buy need to be brought in.

And then I would line them up in a press conference with all the local channels and say "Here's my commitment to you the fans and the game of "professional hockey" in this market. Say hello to all these wonderful new people - absolutely the best in the business. But I'm warning you now, don't get too fond of them because if we're not in the playoffs in 3 years, -make it 2 years if we're not even close- every one of them is fired and I'll be holding a new presser to introduce the new crew. Losing and mediocrity will NOT BE TOLERATED."
^ ^^ POST OF THE YEAR!!!

I would like to apply as Zamboni Driver for your new franchise!

And hey everyone....don't EVER forget that Waddell CHOSE to keep Kovy around.


Don't let it fool you. If you parents out there let your kids take the reigns in your house, how many people would be blaming the kid for his dumbassery? I dare say people would blame the parents. Waddell did not do his job. He left Kovy out there and in the end, he made the "kid" the bad guy. Waddell should have put on his "Big Boy Pants" and set a deadline.....YES OR NO.

You think Lou Lamourello would have let him hang around in hopes that people would show up to games until March 1? No, and that's why Kovy said this organization is hopeless in so many words.


Last edited by ThrasherMinion: 04-07-2010 at 10:12 AM.
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Old
04-07-2010, 12:21 PM
  #9
Toque-trick
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chucky17 View Post
^ ^^ POST OF THE YEAR!!!

I would like to apply as Zamboni Driver for your new franchise!
Sure, just be sure to not miss any spots on the ice between periods and don't oversoak the endzones so there are puddles.

Remember, mediocrity will not be accepted at any level of the organization and I won't hesitate to ship you out to the MIC. That has to be the mantra through the entire organization, a complete 180 from this current state of apathy.

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04-07-2010, 12:45 PM
  #10
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04-07-2010, 12:51 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toque-trick View Post
This whole franchise just needs to be gutted: ownership, management, and hell if I was buying this outfit I'd even petition King Gary and his Board of Governors to change the name, logo, and colors of the team as well. This organization is just toxic and needs an absolute fresh start with people who truly care for and understand the game. The best marketing firm, community relations, youth development and MOST importantly, the best General Manager and Coach money can buy need to be brought in.

And then I would line them up in a press conference with all the local channels and say "Here's my commitment to you the fans and the game of "professional hockey" in this market. Say hello to all these wonderful new people - absolutely the best in the business. But I'm warning you now, don't get too fond of them because if we're not in the playoffs in 3 years, -make it 2 years if we're not even close- every one of them is fired and I'll be holding a new presser to introduce the new crew. Losing and mediocrity will NOT BE TOLERATED."
I agree - this is the total post of the year, too bad it should be filed under the same group as "Phoenix Coyotes Make Money" - pure fantasy.

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04-07-2010, 12:56 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toque-trick View Post
This whole franchise just needs to be gutted: ownership, management, and hell if I was buying this outfit I'd even petition King Gary and his Board of Governors to change the name, logo, and colors of the team as well. This organization is just toxic and needs an absolute fresh start with people who truly care for and understand the game. The best marketing firm, community relations, youth development and MOST importantly, the best General Manager and Coach money can buy need to be brought in.

And then I would line them up in a press conference with all the local channels and say "Here's my commitment to you the fans and the game of "professional hockey" in this market. Say hello to all these wonderful new people - absolutely the best in the business. But I'm warning you now, don't get too fond of them because if we're not in the playoffs in 3 years, -make it 2 years if we're not even close- every one of them is fired and I'll be holding a new presser to introduce the new crew. Losing and mediocrity will NOT BE TOLERATED."
I normally disagree with your negativity. But this post is spot on and I whole heartedly agree.

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04-07-2010, 02:36 PM
  #13
Toque-trick
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Dejavu all over again

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Originally Posted by Lynk View Post
I normally disagree with your negativity. But this post is spot on and I whole heartedly agree.
Lynk, the reason I tend to be so negative at this point is because I've seen and lived this once before and have actually seen it turned around and saved.

I lived through the Dead Wings era of the late 70's through the mid 80's. A horrible situation for an original 6 franchise and not a lot unlike our current situation. I've seen what the right Ownership (Ilitch), Management (Devellano), and Coach (Demers) can do when put together to turn a franchise around. It can be done, but you have to sweep the whole house clean to do it.

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04-08-2010, 04:46 PM
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PHYS251 View Post
At first I found all the Kovalchuk booing amusing, but the more I think about it, the more I feel that it was just wrong on so many levels. People, he didn't re-sign with them, he was *traded.* The way the fans acted, you couldn't tell the difference. And he repeatedly said that he wanted to play for a winning team. What exactly is so bad about that? Really, signs across the arena should been thanking Kovy for being one of the few very good things that's happened to this franchise, not deriding him for being some sort of traitor.
I cheer for the front of the sweater, not the back of it. I've booed the best of them and will continue to do so.

He's the one who misled the franchise, why should I have any respect for him?

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