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Mike O'Connell doesn't know how to win

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01-07-2004, 06:18 AM
  #1
misterjaggers
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Mike O'Connell doesn't know how to win

O'Connell has never been part of a winner as a player, coach or manager.
He has never been part of a championship team in any capacity at any level of hockey.


Last edited by misterjaggers: 01-07-2004 at 07:20 AM.
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01-07-2004, 06:37 AM
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I'm not quite sure what you're saying. For one thing, what is a "winner?" Winning the Cup? If so, how many NHL coaches/GMs that have won a Cup did so before that happened the first time for them as coach/GM? I would have to research what the records are for teams that O'Connell played on. I would venture to guess that several of them had more playoff success than the Bruin teams of the past several years - what would that mean?

Another thing, O'Connell was a better mobile defenseman than any of the guys we have! I'm sure someone will bring up the different eras argument, but in fact MOC was the kind of player the Bruins need now. A Visnovksi of his day. By your rationale, he would be ideally qualified to build a puck-moving defense corps, but that has not happened. What does that mean?

I don't think that is the problem.

 
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01-07-2004, 06:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Eye
I'm not quite sure what you're saying. For one thing, what is a "winner?" Winning the Cup? If so, how many NHL coaches/GMs that have won a Cup did so before that happened the first time for them as coach/GM? I would have to research what the records are for teams that O'Connell played on. I would venture to guess that several of them had more playoff success than the Bruin teams of the past several years - what would that mean?

Another thing, O'Connell was a better mobile defenseman than any of the guys we have! I'm sure someone will bring up the different eras argument, but in fact MOC was the kind of player the Bruins need now. A Visnovksi of his day. By your rationale, he would be ideally qualified to build a puck-moving defense corps, but that has not happened. What does that mean?

I don't think that is the problem.
Excellent post BE.

Everyone piles on MOC because of his unpopular tenure as GM, but I'd venture that some of those same people are total hypocrites- and rooted for MOC when he was a Bruins defenseman making the 1985 Wales All-Star Team, or setting the team record for most goals in consecutive games by a defenseman. No, Bobby Orr doesn't own that record, nor does Ray Bourque or Brad Park. Mike O'Connell does!

This is the same thing you see with Steve Kasper- beloved as a player, but now hated because of what happened when he was coach. The jobs these guys did as coaches/GM's shouldn't have people taking shots at what they did as players, but lo and behold- there it is.

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01-07-2004, 07:11 AM
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Same thing about Mike Sullivan now. While Sullivan did not have the stature of O'Connell (a very good player in his day) or Kasper (ditto), he was a workmanlike guy who stayed in the league a lot of years. As a coach, of course the jury is still very much out.

The fact that some or all of these guys did not prove to be as effective in their new careers in management should not taint their overall rep, which should rightly be based on their playing days. As SR says, Kasper is possibly one of the more disliked figures in the Bruins family in the last 10 years (and I hated him, rightly or not, for the benching incident) and it's too bad this obscures the fact that he was a good player for us.

If anything, this all calls into question how the Bruins make their personnel decisions for management. They obviously like to hire company men they know and take chances on guys with little experience. This may be a very flawed approach. But you can't hang all the blame on the guy who grabs the opportunity and struggles, probably due to inexperience.

 
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01-07-2004, 10:22 AM
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BlackEye - I agree that it makes no sense to take pot shots at ex players for good or bad jobs they are currently doing in management or coaching roles (I usually agree with MJ but not on this one).

Playing and coaching / GM jobs are completely irrelevant - look at MOC, O'Reily, and then at the Burns' and Hartley's of the coaching community - the skills and knowledge to be successful are simply different.

Now on the second comment : that we can't hang (all) the blame on a guy who gets in over his head - Sully - by taking the reigns too early... We'll, where I work, if I take a promo with known politics, budget issues, people problems knowing it is an up or out proposition, and I take it and fail - I get the boot with a smaller parachute than Sully negotiated. Now, not all the blame needs to be put on Sully, but let's face it - if he made the right decision - he would have stayed in Providence for another couple of years to hone his coaching skills, learn the team and players better and get a stronger handle and power base with the management team than he has today. Sure he is MOC's lackey, and MOC is JJ/Sinden's lackey, but it was his choice to jump into the deep end of the pool and now he's having a hard time getting to the shallows - I feel for the guy but in the "real" world, it was his call and he misjudged and deserves some of the blame for at least that.

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01-07-2004, 10:35 AM
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With all due respect... DISAGREE COMPLETELY.

So, you are saying Sullivan is at fault because he accepted an NHL coaching offer? Come on! Timing is everything. You're telling me that YOU would turn down a lucrative position offered within your company, knowing full well that by doing so, it may never be offered again? If you can HONESTLY say that, then you are a rarity. Because in the real world- windows of opportunity are only open so long...if you snooze, you lose!

Sullivan, rookie or not- is still responsible for everything he does or fails to do. But to assert that he should have turned the dream job of a lifetime DOWN in order to stay in the AHL and gain a few more years of experience? That's simply ludicrous.

The Bruins felt he was ready and offered him the job- whether that proves to be a mistake or not has yet to be determined. But blaming the guy because he took the offer, one that may never be offered again if he turned it down, is way off base here.

Sullivan will have to answer for what he fails to accomplish- whether that has to do with his lack of experience or not. But taking the guy to task because he stepped up to the plate...I don't get it.


Last edited by Stock Rocks: 01-07-2004 at 10:41 AM.
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01-07-2004, 10:35 AM
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BB74, I would not disagree with that, meaning that of course Sullivan has to ultimately be judged and held accountable based on his work. But I don't blame him or anyone else for taking one of the Bruins "get in on the ground floor!" job ads.

But what I'm saying is that it's the selection process that needs to be looked at moreso than the individual selected. Because if that guy does not work out, they'll bring in another guy, and if he does not work out, they'll bring in another guy. Since 1997, Burns => Keenan => Ftorek => O'Connell => Sullivan is a lot of coaches. Even JJ called that right, stop looking to fix the problem there.


Last edited by Black Eye: 01-07-2004 at 11:12 AM.
 
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01-07-2004, 11:04 AM
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Terminate from the top down

Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Eye
BB74,
. Since 1997, Burns => Keenan => Ftorek => O'Connell => Sullivan is a lot of coaches. Even JJ called that right, stop looking to fix the problem there.
Your totally right! Dont look to fix the problem there, look everywhere. If that means Donny Delnegro is delivering Lattes in Dunkin Donut commercials so be it. Start at the head of the hydra and work your way around.. Harry, OC, Sullivan, Rene Rancourt.. All of em! Hopefully JJ swings extra hard with his sword and takes his own noggin too. They are truly reaping what they have sown.

On a side note, I do have some good news.. I just saved a lot of money switching to Geico..

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01-07-2004, 11:08 AM
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What?

 
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01-07-2004, 11:21 AM
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Stock Rocks. Here's where I am coming from. I don't think it is fair to take shots at the coach because he was an average player and therefore can't take the team forward as a coach - there is little or no correlation on the two points.
Now where we are in disagreement is my suggestion that Sully is at least partly responsible for taking the fall because:

He got in over his head.
He knew the situation in Boston with management & the owner.
He knew the track record with coaches and that with the CBA and likley lock out the B's aren't going to keep him on payroll because he is a nice guy in 2005. Therefore the coach is expendable.

Now I have nothing wrong with the guy for his personal choice to take the "dream job", however where we disagree is his timing - you suggest that he had no choice but to take the opportunity when it was presented to him - otherwise it would never come again. Well, knowing the above, my view is that Sully made a (potential) mistake - whether goaded by B's management or not that is irrevelant. He was an NHL player, had a good AHL coaching job, delivered results in 1 year and was respected by his players - a year from now, if he could built on that he would have other chances in the league (remember the lockout and league shake-up) Instead he made the decision to accept the responsibility and the opportunity and now he's paying, at least in part, for it. And in answer to your question of me personally refusing jobs that on face value look great and are financially interesting - yes, sometimes the best thing is to refuse - especially with such a dysfunctional head office as in the B's - and I've done just that on occassion and in hindsight I believe I've made the better choices. BTW - not at all offended by disareements.

And Black eye - I agree - but I believe it is more purposeful than we would like to believe.

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01-07-2004, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by misterjaggers
O'Connell has never been part of a winner as a player, coach or manager.
He has never been part of a championship team in any capacity at any level of hockey.
I give O'Connell credit for trying to build a team void of egos. I also give him credit for understanding the 'team' concept. But at the same time, I would say 'O'Connell does not know what it takes to win.'

While the Bruins organization shares blame for their very policies that essentially preclude an institutional committment to winning, Mike O'Connell definitely has had his part in building a failing team. Any GM is going to make mistakes, but when it comes to building a legit contender, O'Connell's judgment is obviously lacking.

Again, Jacobs and Sinden share blame. Jacobs has not empowered his managers nor has he demanded accountability to winning. Sinden, while a great hockey man who can judge talent and is probably one of the best ever at valuing players, has ensured the Bruins don't overpay for the occaisional needed piece, whether they are a contender or not. When the draft wasn't producing, Jacobs and Sinden weren't adding quality talent to fill key roles, but instead retreads and knock-offs like Andrei Kovalenko, Joe Murphy and Michal Grosek. This is why Guerin walks but a replacement like Amonte is only offered a short term deal. In essence, many of O'Connell's decisions are a product of this organizational approach.

But that doesn't account for everything.

You don't plan a team void of any mobility or offensive element along the backline. You don't go into camp with two proven centers on your roster and rely on an unproven rookie to be your #2. You don't identify work ethic and leadership as the failings of your playoff run and then stick with essentially the same players. You don't trade your second line center away without having a good plan to recover the loss. You don't take chances with critical positions like goaltending when you have a lot riding on your season. You don't carry problematic issues for years at a time without being able to address them. These were O'Connell's decisions, and his judgment can stink.

Two part organization, one part O'Connell. It takes a team to lose.

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01-07-2004, 12:42 PM
  #12
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Sorry my bad..

Quote:
Originally Posted by Black Eye
What?

I was thinking faster than I was typing..

I agree, the people making the choices are the ones who are making the bad ones - Not the guys accepting the oppertunitys - however, I would not look at Sullivan as a bad OC hire alone, rather OC and the lot of them (save maybe the scouting) should be relieved. Looking at Sullivan is nice and all, but clearly OC and his upperlings are the guiding light down this path to coaching ill repute. Including Harry..


Must have been the morning dental work.. space ghost, from coast to coast..


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