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Old
04-30-2013, 12:23 PM
  #1
drwpreds
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Expectations for the franchise?

There seems to be a lot of discussion about the expectations for the franchise, and I have debated some who have called the Predators results over the past several years “mediocre”.

So I thought since the season is over we could have a discussion about it. I went back and looked at the past 7 years- since the 04-05 lockout . (And yes, I am excluding this weird strike shortened season- if we have another year like this next year, I retract everything I am saying here)

Here are the results:
YEAR RECORD PTS
2012 48-26-8 104 SECOND ROUND
2011 44-27-11 99 SECOND ROUND
2010 47-29-6 100 FIRST ROUND
2009 40-34-8 88 NONE
2008 41-32-9 91 FIRST ROUND
2007 51-23-8 110 FIRST ROUND
2006 49-25-8 106 FIRST ROUND

That means over a 7 year span, we averaged 45 wins and 100 points per season, and made the playoffs 6 out of 7 years (and we also made it the year before the strike). I am pretty sure that would be in the top 10 of the entire NHL if you did the research. There are at least 20 franchises that would absolutely kill for those kinds of results. There is no way that is mediocre in any way shape or form in my book. Mediocre to me would be hovering around .500 most years with an occasional good season thrown in. In that 7 year span we had 5 great seasons, and 2 average- again, not mediocre.

Now, I will agree that the playoff performance has been disappointing- the 2006 and 2007 seasons really hurt. But making the second round the past 2 years is a pretty good result and nothing to sneeze at.

My question is this- what are your expectations for this franchise?? For me, I want us to have a team that consistently makes the playoffs, has an occasional great year in which we have a real shot at the Cup (like last year).

It is my contention that many people have unrealistic expectations- if your definition of success is “win the cup or bust” then I think you are never going to be satisfied. It hurts to say, but it is entirely possible that we will never win the Cup. Look at other famous franchises that went decades and decades without winning the Cup. And I also think people forget just how young we are as a franchise- 14 years is nothing, and the first few of those are expansion-type years that can be written off.

If you look at last year as a disappointing season, and I know many who do, then to me, that is being unrealistic. We won 48 games, had 104 points, and knocked Detroit out of the playoffs. Even though we missed out on a great chance of at least making the Conference finals, I still look at that as a great season. I really thought that this horrible, horrible year would make people better appreciate the really good years we have had, but I guess it hasn’t for some.

For me, I want us to have a team that consistently makes the playoffs, and has an occasional great year in which we have a real shot at the Cup (like last year). I just want a team that in most years is good enough to be a contender to at least win a round in the playoffs. If you look at history, the playoffs are such a crapshoot- anything can happen- just look at the number of 1 and 2 seeds who have gone down in the first round. Just get to the playoffs and see what happens.

I will close with this- if I told you right now, that starting next year, our next 7 years will be exactly like the previous 7 we have that I detailed above- averaging 45 wins and 100 points and making the playoffs 6 of the next 7 years- would you take that right now and be happy with it?? I absolutely would- even if we don’t win a Cup. If that is mediocre then I will take it all day long.

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04-30-2013, 12:58 PM
  #2
GwtGlads2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drwpreds View Post
There seems to be a lot of discussion about the expectations for the franchise, and I have debated some who have called the Predators results over the past several years “mediocre”.

So I thought since the season is over we could have a discussion about it. I went back and looked at the past 7 years- since the 04-05 lockout . (And yes, I am excluding this weird strike shortened season- if we have another year like this next year, I retract everything I am saying here)

Here are the results:
YEAR RECORD PTS
2012 48-26-8 104 SECOND ROUND
2011 44-27-11 99 SECOND ROUND
2010 47-29-6 100 FIRST ROUND
2009 40-34-8 88 NONE
2008 41-32-9 91 FIRST ROUND
2007 51-23-8 110 FIRST ROUND
2006 49-25-8 106 FIRST ROUND

That means over a 7 year span, we averaged 45 wins and 100 points per season, and made the playoffs 6 out of 7 years (and we also made it the year before the strike). I am pretty sure that would be in the top 10 of the entire NHL if you did the research. There are at least 20 franchises that would absolutely kill for those kinds of results. There is no way that is mediocre in any way shape or form in my book. Mediocre to me would be hovering around .500 most years with an occasional good season thrown in. In that 7 year span we had 5 great seasons, and 2 average- again, not mediocre.

Now, I will agree that the playoff performance has been disappointing- the 2006 and 2007 seasons really hurt. But making the second round the past 2 years is a pretty good result and nothing to sneeze at.

My question is this- what are your expectations for this franchise?? For me, I want us to have a team that consistently makes the playoffs, has an occasional great year in which we have a real shot at the Cup (like last year).

It is my contention that many people have unrealistic expectations- if your definition of success is “win the cup or bust” then I think you are never going to be satisfied. It hurts to say, but it is entirely possible that we will never win the Cup. Look at other famous franchises that went decades and decades without winning the Cup. And I also think people forget just how young we are as a franchise- 14 years is nothing, and the first few of those are expansion-type years that can be written off.

If you look at last year as a disappointing season, and I know many who do, then to me, that is being unrealistic. We won 48 games, had 104 points, and knocked Detroit out of the playoffs. Even though we missed out on a great chance of at least making the Conference finals, I still look at that as a great season. I really thought that this horrible, horrible year would make people better appreciate the really good years we have had, but I guess it hasn’t for some.

For me, I want us to have a team that consistently makes the playoffs, and has an occasional great year in which we have a real shot at the Cup (like last year). I just want a team that in most years is good enough to be a contender to at least win a round in the playoffs. If you look at history, the playoffs are such a crapshoot- anything can happen- just look at the number of 1 and 2 seeds who have gone down in the first round. Just get to the playoffs and see what happens.

I will close with this- if I told you right now, that starting next year, our next 7 years will be exactly like the previous 7 we have that I detailed above- averaging 45 wins and 100 points and making the playoffs 6 of the next 7 years- would you take that right now and be happy with it?? I absolutely would- even if we don’t win a Cup. If that is mediocre then I will take it all day long.
There's no doubt the Predators track record is far better than the team formerly known as Atlanta but, at what point do you say "well just making the playoffs just isn't good enough anymore". It is a balancing act I mean we all want regular season games in March and early April to mean something but at the same time a contender at least for me would be a team that can make the conference finals and Stanley Cup finals and win them on occasion. It is absolutely unrealistic to expect to win the Stanley Cup every year but at the same time you don't want to consistently get there only to lose either(see the Atlanta Braves and the World Series).

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04-30-2013, 01:00 PM
  #3
glenngineer
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I want to make the playoffs and to make some deep runs. While making it to the second round is nothing to sneeze at, the great teams or teams that make great runs go deep. I'd trade a season or two of making the playoffs to really go deep. Heck, Detroit is in the playoffs for what, 20 years in a row or something crazy like that? Granted, they're on the down swing of that cycle but that was one hell of a run and they even won a few Cups in that process. Yes, they had an owner who could afford an all-star roster. Yes, they had some amazing players but they still had to play the games.

I think every time one of these threads comes up we do ourselves a disservice to be satisfied with what we know and have done. 7 out of 8 years in the playoffs until this year is great. Is it great enough for me. Nope. I want a team that is going to go out and improve and build and grow and has a shot year in and year out. Merely making the playoffs isn't enough anymore. It shouldn't be. Not for me. Not for anyone around here. We deserve better. The players deserve better. The franchise deserves better. If you have expectations where the bar isn't high, you'll never be disappointed but you'll never achieve greatness either. Set the bar high and attain the goals you've set out to accomplish. Sometimes easier said than done but we've been around long enough to know that while it's been a fun ride, there is more to achieve. Until that happens, I will not be satisfied.

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04-30-2013, 01:23 PM
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triggrman
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I think we're doing it right, just need another piece or 2 to come together.

This franchise has been through quite a run since it's inception.

Think about a few things that have happened that rarely happen to other teams.

Vokoun’s freakish bloodclot right before the playoffs
Leipold’s betrayel
Jim Balsillie’s Hamilton crap
Leipold’s firesale
Radulov’s defection, return and defection
AK and AR party all the time
Suter and Weber drama
Missing 8 of 12 forwards at one time this season

How many franchises go through all that? Sure some of it was self-inflicted but still, that’s a lot of drama. I actually look forward to an offseason that’s a bit more normal.

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04-30-2013, 01:28 PM
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I Will Son
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I want everything to be how it has been. (EXCLUDING THIS YEAR)

Just with more lethal scoring

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04-30-2013, 01:48 PM
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triggrman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I Will Son View Post
I want everything to be how it has been. (EXCLUDING THIS YEAR)

Just with more lethal scoring
Agreed.

What I want more than anything is stability.

I want to continue to watch the NHL in my home city.

I want my team to win.

I want them to play exciting hockey.

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04-30-2013, 02:08 PM
  #7
ThirdManIn
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With regards to mediocrity, it can only be defined in context. I don't have the time (or desire really) to sit around and do the leg work here, but based on this article we would be among the most successful NHL franchises. In fact, have more playoff appearances and winning seasons than their number five pick (Anaheim) over the same period of time, though without the Cup win. It can also be argued that, again, minus the Cup win, the Predators have been more consistently successful over that same period of time than the Blackhawks.

Mediocre is a term I would use with the Predators when only looking at postseason play, but it isn't certainly not how I would define their play as a whole over the time frame given in the OP.

Keep in mind that both Chicago and Pittsburgh were able to land some big time players (Crosby, Malkin, MAF, Kane, Toews, etc) by being absolutely terrible during a time when the Preds were actually scratching and clawing to only end up on the outside looking in, giving them mid-round picks.

If what the Predators have done since the last lockout is mediocre, there are a hell of a lot of absolutely abysmal teams in the league. In fact, a disproportionate amount of abysmal teams.

I'm with Trigg. The Predators on going in the right direction, this season notwithstanding, and after the Summer of '07 that is a fantastic thing.

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04-30-2013, 02:12 PM
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This season was an enigma. I am personally just happy we were able to finish off the season the way we did to ensure a high pick for our future. Just about every stanley cup winner has gone through a few down years before making a cup run. The only team out there that has been able to consistantly make cup runs without being a bad team is Detroit. They can do that because free agents want to play there. The Predators do not have that luxery so I as a fan am willing to go through some down years to make a cup run eventually.

I trust in Trotz and Poile to build this team and coach it. I do not think our record truely reflects our talent right now. People who knock Trotx have no clue. He would have a job almost instantly if we let him go as an NHL coach somewhere else. Just ask the Avs if they would take Trotz. Be patient and don't expect a cup run next season. If we simply make the playoffs next season I would be thrilled and I think it will happen.

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04-30-2013, 02:14 PM
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TMI, I was thinking about this in the car a few minutes ago. While our regular season production has been pretty great, our poor playoff results hurt that production. To me, you base a teams success on two seasons, the regular and playoff. Mediocre may be a bit harsh but coming off great regular seasons, the playoff results downgrade that success. Is mediocre a fair word, probably not but we're not this amazing franchise either with a ton of success. Regular season success is great but if you don't have the playoff success to go with it, is it really success?

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04-30-2013, 02:18 PM
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I came to love the Preds due to the integrity of the organization, and their desire and ability to put a competitive product on the ice every year, regardless of the talent level of the roster.

My only expectations from this organization:
-Honest effort to be competitive every season from the management, coaches and players
-To act, and continue bringing in people, with the high character that has always seemed to be a part of this franchise

They do that, and I'll be a satisfied Predator fan. Winning a Cup is one of the hardest things in all of sports to do, so it's tough for me to place any expectations on end results. Provided everyone does what they can to improve the team, and they don't go out of their way to be bad, I can't really complain.

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04-30-2013, 02:24 PM
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ThirdManIn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AtrickhayOrnqvistpay View Post
TMI, I was thinking about this in the car a few minutes ago. While our regular season production has been pretty great, our poor playoff results hurt that production. To me, you base a teams success on two seasons, the regular and playoff. Mediocre may be a bit harsh but coming off great regular seasons, the playoff results downgrade that success. Is mediocre a fair word, probably not but we're not this amazing franchise either with a ton of success. Regular season success is great but if you don't have the playoff success to go with it, is it really success?
I think "very good" is a fair description of how the Preds have been since 2005. Not great, but very good. There is room to improve for sure.

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04-30-2013, 07:40 PM
  #12
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Build the team, build on success.

Next season - Make the playoffs.

Two seasons ahead - Second round.

Three seasons - Third round, new ground!

Four seasons - Lose in the Stanley Cup Finals.

Five seasons - Stanley Cup Champs!

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04-30-2013, 08:31 PM
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I don't get the fascination with just making the playoffs. In a league where over half the teams make the playoffs, that's not even really a feat.

That said, I'm totally prepared to ride the rollercoaster. You get good, you challenge, you rebuild. Lather, rinse, repeat. Heck, this picking in the top five is a blast - i'm excited about adding a guy like Barkov. I'd rather not do it every year, but i'm looking at the bright side.

I'm not a "Cup or bust" guy, but I'm also not a "WooHoo, we lost in the first round, wasn't that fun!" guy either. I think I can judge each season by it's own merits. FWIW, I think last year's loss to Phoenix was more disappointing than some of our previous 1st round exits, as I really expected us to challenge for the cup last year.

If this post is the age old question of whether it would be better to be great but take some bad with it or just be consistent - personally, I'd take Tampa's last 10 years (one cup, an ECF game 7, some decent playoff runs, some terrible lean years) over our ten year run of "meh".

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04-30-2013, 08:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adsfan View Post
Build the team, build on success.
Next season - Make the playoffs.
Two seasons ahead - Second round.
Three seasons - Third round, new ground!
Four seasons - Lose in the Stanley Cup Finals.
Five seasons - Stanley Cup Champs!
Quote:
Originally Posted by RaiderDoug View Post
I don't get the fascination with just making the playoffs. In a league where over half the teams make the playoffs, that's not even really a feat.

That said, I'm totally prepared to ride the rollercoaster. You get good, you challenge, you rebuild. Lather, rinse, repeat.

That really needs to be the expectation for ANY franchise. With free agency and roster turnover, especially for a small-market/shoestring-budget team, 5 years is a long time to keep things together. You've got to be able to put a team together, build up chemistry and experience and challenge for a title in that 5-7 year window and then you'll have to start again.

The Preds in the last 8 seasons have been mediocre in the sense that they have never challenged for a title. They should have done so last year, now it's time to rebuild.

Fortunately for us Preds fans, I don't think it will take another 8 years to get back to the point where we really expect a deep run. Maybe 4-5 years... and it really HAS to be, because at that point Rinne, Weber, Hornqvist and Klein will be on the other side of 30 and with Fisher and Legwand being well beyond useful.

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04-30-2013, 09:10 PM
  #15
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So long as Poile is in charge I don't expect us to ever become a true contenders. He hasn't gotten to that status in 30 years in GM, and I don't expect that to change anytime soon. 1 season in 31 years he's finished in top 4 (Conference Finals). Sure there are some years of expansion and limited budgets, but 31 years is a lot of sample size to see patterns.

He had a chance the last couple years to get us to elite status and blew it, really showing his flaws as a GM. That's not to say he doesn't have his strengths, but getting to elite status is not one of them. He's not a "deal sealer"-- in trade talks, in contract negotiations, in dealing with our star players, in bringing in UFAs, etc.

Finishing top 8 (Semi finals) is a success, but that's still only the 25th percentile. We also got whipped pretty good by a moderately skilled Phoenix team.

I expect us to get back to a playoff caliber team within next 2 years, but Poile can only take us far from what I've seen, and as evidenced by his long track record as GM.

That being said, I do like the Erat trade (thank you Marty Erat for initiating that and giving a long list of teams), and it looks like we should get a great prospect at #4. IF Forseberg and our #4 are true 1st liner players, Poile will have two elusive pieces he's been unable to obtain otherwise. But it's going to take several years to even find that out.


Last edited by dulzhok: 04-30-2013 at 09:19 PM.
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Old
05-01-2013, 12:35 AM
  #16
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I want the Predators to win the Cup as badly as anyone else; but my expectation is to enjoy good hockey win or lose.

I live and die with this team but good, entertaining NHL hockey is my expectation. We get in the playoffs ... great! We don't? Life goes on ... get ready for October.

Now, we had too much "not good hockey" this season but really this one was kind of a throwaway lockout season.

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Old
05-01-2013, 04:59 PM
  #17
Machinehead
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I wouldn't say I have expectations for consistently competing, much less a Cup. I've been in this business too long to expect anything anymore. It's hockey. It's crazy. **** happens, or as I like to say, hockey happens. So I'm not much for expectations.

A better word for me is hope. I hope that the Predators continue to compete. I'm not asking for Cups, although that would fantastic to see. Fact of the matter is there's 30 teams and only 1 wins it. You're gonna spend most of your existence NOT winning it, I don't care who you are.

That being said, what I hope for, is for the Predators largely to keep doing what they're doing. They've made the playoffs most years, they've been a team that's tough for anyone to play most years, they've been a team that has a chance to win every night. They're in it. And I think what goes along with that is, you like to make the playoffs at least. Some years you won't, but don't make a habit out of it. That's all you can really ask for.

We've all gone through years, and this was one of them, where you're losing most of the games, and the team isn't really hanging with their competition consistently, to the point where you can really get behind the team and really enjoy the ride. That happens to everyone. The important thing is they haven't made a habit of it and most years have put out a product you can get behind. All I want is for them to continue that.

If there's anything I'd like to change, a more offensive culture would be nice, but any way they can compete as long as they're competing is fine by me.

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