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Death to the Undertaker....The all purpose Fire McPhee thread

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05-15-2012, 05:38 PM
  #501
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yes, its odd.

* as a rule the coach hasnt turned down nhl coaching opportunities because he wanted to remain at home with his junior team and family.

* as a rule those midseason coaching replacements are not defacto interim coaches.

* as a rule the team involved is not a several seasons cup contender that was expected even after the coaching change to perform deep into the playoffs or be considered a failure.

this is not bruce boudreau taking over a losing team and making the playoffs for the first time who was also desperate for a chance to coach in the nhl. the boudreau scenario is the typical one.

we all considered that it was possible that hunter might well have walked away had the caps won the cup. that also would have been pretty odd.

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05-15-2012, 06:40 PM
  #502
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Really? No way? I disagree. After years of losing in the playoffs, and following every game with a press conference in which he's asked about his team's defensive deficiencies, I think it's possible that BB started to drink the defensive Kool Aid, and tried to get his team to do the same.
When was the last time in any sport a coach made major changes to their system of play because of comments from the media and fans...?

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05-15-2012, 06:43 PM
  #503
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I've been somewhat a GMGM supporter in the past but if he doesn't hire an offensive minded coach that preaches an offensively dynamic system then I'm done with him.


He's built a team where his high paid players are great offensive talents and he either needs to put them to good use or tell them to GTFO.

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05-15-2012, 07:09 PM
  #504
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I've been somewhat a GMGM supporter in the past but if he doesn't hire an offensive minded coach that preaches an offensively dynamic system then I'm done with him.


He's built a team where his high paid players are great offensive talents and he either needs to put them to good use or tell them to GTFO.
I bolded the critical part of your statement, and this is where I believe BB was lacking and a more experienced coach can succeed with this team. We need to have different options depending on how an opponent plays. You want to pressure the puck? We will burn you with quick, crisp passing. You want to overload one side of the ice to overwhelm our cyclers? We will get it to the other side and burn you. You want to stand us up at the blue line? We will have mastered the gentle dump in and fetch.

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05-15-2012, 08:45 PM
  #505
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I'd prefer not to think about the meaning behind it, but to me, Hunter doesn't walk away if he thinks this is a great chance to win a Cup.

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05-15-2012, 09:20 PM
  #506
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I think Hunter wanted to walk away no matter what. He was only doing GMGM and the organization a favor. I don't think Hunter had any intention of staying on as HC.

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05-16-2012, 07:14 AM
  #507
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I'd prefer not to think about the meaning behind it, but to me, Hunter doesn't walk away if he thinks this is a great chance to win a Cup.
That may be true, but I also think it's a stretch to call that a direct slight at the org. I think Hunter is smart enough to realize there's no such thing as a "great" chance at the Cup, so even if he liked the direction the org. was being taken (and he very well might not) he'd have to stick around for several years to really set himself up.

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05-16-2012, 08:00 AM
  #508
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Given the magnitude of changes that were made after BB left, it was dumb of George to make the change mid season. Sure hindsight is 20/20 but 500 hockey aside, we looked ugly in our new systems so more time was needed to learn it, or determine that our players just couldn't do it. Maybe it was the teachers, but that could have been determined as well.

While I appreciate that he gave Bruce one more chance, he wrongly thought things would change. We handily beat the Rangers which had to have helped BB keep his job. But who had lost Callahan, who I thought was their best player. Then we got swept.

George loaded up our playoff roster last summer and said as such, almost as if he had decided the coach/system for the entire season. And while it was nice for the players to know they wouldn't be traded, I would have liked to keep them more motivated. Then he pulls the cord and changes near everything, but not a single player added to supplement what were radical changes in what we did on the ice. No player sacrificed, to wake up and shake up the team.

George is trying but is gun shy. He has to look no further than our own history, to see the effect big roster trades have. Yes George, ship out quality players (Walter for Langway) or picks (the package to get Dale). Live dangerously for a year. Keeping the core intact, hording firsts, implies the core is not flawed and meshes perfectly, and you won't miss on 1sts.

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05-24-2012, 11:11 AM
  #509
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Is McPhee in a downward spiral?

When a GM is hired he is inspired and full of adreneline. He makes dynamic moves to gather assets and improve the future prospects of the team. The team improves and everyone is happy.

But after a time, the GM gets weary and has to think about saving his own job--even at the expense of the franchise.

All but the very best GMs go through this phase. Poile saved the Caps, then stagnated and failed. He is repeating that story in Nashville.

McPhee is in this phase right now.

Since the Montreal series he has been unsure of his actions. This trade deadline he did nothing to improve the team. He sat on his hands and hoped Hunter would (somehow) get them into the playoffs and save his job.

He got lucky. But really, it isn't good for McPhee or the Caps. When a GM gets into a downward spiral it's just a burden to keep the charade going. McPhee would do best to resign and take up a new job in a new city. All he is doing in D.C. is waiting to be fired.

And, of course, any GM in this spiral will only drag the team down further and further.

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05-24-2012, 11:13 AM
  #510
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There's a thread for this.

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05-24-2012, 11:40 AM
  #511
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Whenever GMGM talks about moves or decisions of note he mentions the involvement of Patrick & Leonsis so I have to think of this management group as truly a triumvirate. It's Patrick's unclear involvement in particular that makes me question just how much we should put their management failures on McPhee alone. If there's a downward spiral occurring it's that entire trio and their inability to recognize what it truly takes to become a Cup contender. They are entirely too loyal to mediocrity. See elsewhere: Grunfeld, Ernie.

If they do little in the way of trades or UFA signings and don't have a coach in place by August I don't see how anyone could have much confidence in the way this organization is being run.

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05-24-2012, 11:41 AM
  #512
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GMGM's not in a downward spiral, he's stagnated. That's the problem.

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05-24-2012, 12:26 PM
  #513
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It seems to me George is just running his business day to day, and doesn't have his eye on the prize; more treading water. Conservative moves at most, don't rock the boat, stay the course > go win a damn cup. Just compete every year, and keep his job.

So much of what we think are based on expectations. George faced increased expectations because Ovi unleashed by Bruce made us contenders overnight. He has struggled to keep up with fans expectations since. One step back, Montreal, was all it took. The Tampa showing, hurt.

But good points Langway, he may only have a 49% say in all that happens, for all we know. Was it his idea to move a pick for Wideman? Most wanted Wideman gone at the deadline, well who the hell wanted him in the first place. But he is the face of the management so he has to take the heat until we know different.

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05-24-2012, 12:58 PM
  #514
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Originally Posted by Langway View Post
Whenever GMGM talks about moves or decisions of note he mentions the involvement of Patrick & Leonsis so I have to think of this management group as truly a triumvirate. It's Patrick's unclear involvement in particular that makes me question just how much we should put their management failures on McPhee alone. If there's a downward spiral occurring it's that entire trio and their inability to recognize what it truly takes to become a Cup contender. They are entirely too loyal to mediocrity. See elsewhere: Grunfeld, Ernie.

Spot on.

If McPhee isn't even calling the shots it's even more hopeless. One guy can get fired. Triumvirates spin in the fire eternally.




Why are so few fans complaining? Are most so apathetic as to just take the pain?

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05-24-2012, 01:03 PM
  #515
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Spot on.

If McPhee isn't even calling the shots it's even more hopeless. One guy can get fired. Triumvirates spin in the fire eternally.




Why are so few fans complaining? Are most so apathetic as to just take the pain?
Decades of failure? I honestly can't understand it. I think many Caps fans were simply happy to make it to the 2nd round after years of no playoffs. Their eyes aren't on the prize IMO.

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05-24-2012, 01:23 PM
  #516
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Spot on.

If McPhee isn't even calling the shots it's even more hopeless. One guy can get fired. Triumvirates spin in the fire eternally.




Why are so few fans complaining? Are most so apathetic as to just take the pain?
Most are realists. We can complain about GMGM needing to be fired, Schultz, Laich, etc. to be traded, which coach would be ideal here. At the end of the day, we know the ineptitude of the front office will be oblivious to it all.

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05-24-2012, 01:29 PM
  #517
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Most are realists. We can complain about GMGM needing to be fired, Schultz, Laich, etc. to be traded, which coach would be ideal here. At the end of the day, we know the ineptitude of the front office will be oblivious to it all.
Yeah pretty much.

I mean fans can sometimes help in controlling the fate of a player I suppose by "booing him out of town".

They can even help move a coach out ..ie weren't there Fire Hanlon chants the game before he got fired? Perhaps that was a factor however small?

But there is almost nothing you can do about a GM..especially if he is part of a 3 headed monster with one of the heads being the owner!!! The monster is not going to cut one of its own heads off thats for sure.

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05-24-2012, 01:55 PM
  #518
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Decades of failure? I honestly can't understand it. I think many Caps fans were simply happy to make it to the 2nd round after years of no playoffs. Their eyes aren't on the prize IMO.
Fans having their eyes on the prize is going to lead to what? People have to realize that any fan-caused change in the direction of the team could very easily mean making things worse, not better, right? As long as people think the team has above-average chances they're probably going to watch. Stop watching, force Ted's hand via his pocketbook, and you lead down an uncomfortable path that could backfire very quickly.

It's one thing to talk about where the management, coaches, players need to be in terms of motivation. But for fans there's not many options. Watch or don't watch. Buy tickets or don't buy tickets. Vocalizing displeasure is mostly going to be dismissed, because there just aren't enough people to make that much noise (and even if there are, good luck getting a coherent message together among the fanbase).

And, frankly, given the ever-increasing ticket prices I don't know that Ted is worried about the happiness of the fanbase right now. If he thought he were on thin ice with the fans you'd imagine they wouldn't be as aggressive as they have been in that respect, right?

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05-24-2012, 01:56 PM
  #519
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Yeah pretty much.

I mean fans can sometimes help in controlling the fate of a player I suppose by "booing him out of town".

They can even help move a coach out ..ie weren't there Fire Hanlon chants the game before he got fired? Perhaps that was a factor however small?

But there is almost nothing you can do about a GM..especially if he is part of a 3 headed monster with one of the heads being the owner!!! The monster is not going to cut one of its own heads off thats for sure.
Fans can eventually vote with their wallets and their remotes. But the lag time is pretty high, and doing so is somewhat of a nuclear option, I think. Another rebuild is the last thing people are going to want but it'd be a risk depending on how severe the response was.

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05-24-2012, 02:03 PM
  #520
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Fans having their eyes on the prize is going to lead to what? People have to realize that any fan-caused change in the direction of the team could very easily mean making things worse, not better, right? As long as people think the team has above-average chances they're probably going to watch. Stop watching, force Ted's hand via his pocketbook, and you lead down an uncomfortable path that could backfire very quickly.

It's one thing to talk about where the management, coaches, players need to be in terms of motivation. But for fans there's not many options. Watch or don't watch. Buy tickets or don't buy tickets. Vocalizing displeasure is mostly going to be dismissed, because there just aren't enough people to make that much noise (and even if there are, good luck getting a coherent message together among the fanbase).

And, frankly, given the ever-increasing ticket prices I don't know that Ted is worried about the happiness of the fanbase right now. If he thought he were on thin ice with the fans you'd imagine they wouldn't be as aggressive as they have been in that respect, right?
If fans demand competent management decisions, and vote with their wallets, ownership has to respond (typically).

Good managers know you can't be afraid to make change. Leonsis and Caps management have never cared more about the fans opinion than they have the last few years. There's the season ticketholder advisory board and a lot of handholding if you've got a good rep. They're not dummies.

This is a fragile house of cards and they know it.

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05-24-2012, 02:10 PM
  #521
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If fans demand competent management decisions, and vote with their wallets, ownership has to respond (typically).

Good managers know you can't be afraid to make change. Leonsis and Caps management have never cared more about the fans opinion than they have the last few years. There's the season ticketholder advisory board and a lot of handholding if you've got a good rep. They're not dummies.

This is a fragile house of cards and they know it.
My point is they're getting competent management (on the whole). Demanding change is just as likely to backfire as it is to push them higher, and I imagine many fans (not to mention Ted) know this.

So yes, it's fragile, but knowing just how much risk is really involved do you really think either side is going to force the issue right now?

I mean, if the Skins turn things around and make a big dent into the winter entertainment budgets throughout the fanbase, then I can see desperation setting in (Caps fans who get tired of spending money on a good-but-not-great product, or management that can't deal with stagnation in the face of tougher competition) but until then I don't know how much uproar to realistically expect.

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05-24-2012, 02:46 PM
  #522
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My point is they're getting competent management (on the whole). Demanding change is just as likely to backfire as it is to push them higher, and I imagine many fans (not to mention Ted) know this.


There are individuals who say this every summer and I can't understand it to save my life.

What is the standard? The standard of competence can only be winning the Stanley Cup. Or at least coming so close that the it's clear the team will win soon (because the team continues to improve).

But the Capitals haven't won and the team is getting worse every year. Now we don't even have a coach. McPhee and Co. is not competent management right now.

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05-24-2012, 03:32 PM
  #523
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My point is they're getting competent management (on the whole). Demanding change is just as likely to backfire as it is to push them higher, and I imagine many fans (not to mention Ted) know this.

So yes, it's fragile, but knowing just how much risk is really involved do you really think either side is going to force the issue right now?

I mean, if the Skins turn things around and make a big dent into the winter entertainment budgets throughout the fanbase, then I can see desperation setting in (Caps fans who get tired of spending money on a good-but-not-great product, or management that can't deal with stagnation in the face of tougher competition) but until then I don't know how much uproar to realistically expect.
Competent is letting Semin walk for nothing? Competent is extending injury-prone Poti? Competent is signing Ward to a 4 year $12mil deal? Competent is letting Flash walk for nothing? Sure there are some good moves in McPhee's favor, but there seem to be a lot of bad ones and repeated failures in the postseason. Repeated underachieving.

I think you and I have a difference in the definition of competent.

Why is demanding change "just as likely to backfire"? Change for the sake of change is foolish. Change with direction and purpose is not.

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05-24-2012, 03:41 PM
  #524
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Competent is letting Semin walk for nothing? Competent is extending injury-prone Poti? Competent is signing Ward to a 4 year $12mil deal? Competent is letting Flash walk for nothing? Sure there are some good moves in McPhee's favor, but there seem to be a lot of bad ones and repeated failures in the postseason. Repeated underachieving.

I think you and I have a difference in the definition of competent.

Why is demanding change "just as likely to backfire"? Change for the sake of change is foolish. Change with direction and purpose is not.
Top 1/3 to 1/2 of the league is competent. Maybe not where you want to be in terms of results vs. $$ spent but still. We want/need above and beyond competent to win the Cup, but competent is what we have. It can get much, much worse from here. It's true that they need a vision, but the problem is a new GM probably means a new vision and you're SOL if that takes a long time to implement. That's the risk (I'm not against it, to be clear, but I think it's a high risk move that won't happen yet).

Individual moves, everyone's going to disagree for some (which is why I said "on the whole"). Semin, might as well look at him as a deadline rental if you're pissed that they didn't get anything for him (besides, the time to do that was years ago before he was so close to UFA, and at the time he was more important and more valuable even as a rental to us). Flash they got Hannan, again just look at it as a UFA rental situation. They got a decent amount out of those guys over the course of their times here, all things considered. I'm not angry that they didn't sell those guys for picks rather than do what they did towards the ends of their time here, if that's what you're getting at (Wideman on the other hand...)

GMGM hasn't been good enough, or perhaps hasn't been bold enough, to this point. But there is the potential for some really, really bad GMing that I think people are ignoring. Pushing too hard for a big change is always going to run the risk of things getting much worse, even if you think you have a vision laid out.

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05-24-2012, 03:44 PM
  #525
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We already had worse with McPhee...10 YEARS of it. Apparently that's not enough. ONTO our 3rd 5 year plan (or is it the 4th). If you don't succeed, fail fail again...

And no, I don't think McPhee is a bad GM. I think he's a good one. HOWEVER, his time has come and gone. He's failed to get this team over the hump. It's time for a new vision.


Also, I never advocated nor did I expect Semin or Wideman to get moved at the deadline. The resulting fan backlash would have resulted in a lot of season ticket cancellations and probably a missed post season. McPhee was NEVER going to show the white flag of surrender to fans like that.

I would have traded Semin 2 years ago when his value was at its highest.

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