The morning after in Thrasherville

So, the Kovalchuk era in Thrasherville officially ended last night. However, the sun still came up this morning. Well, at least I’m assuming so…it’s so rainy and cloudy out there today I can’t say that I’ve actually been able to eye-ball confirm that rumor.

Anyway…as widely speculated, Don Waddell and the Atlanta Thrashers dealt away Ilya Kovalchuk… their team captain, leading scorer, centerpiece and face of the franchise. Heading to New Jersey with him is young defenseman Anssi Salmela, who is actually returning to the Devils after coming here in the Nic Havelid trade a year ago.

Say good-bye to Kovalchuk and his potential 90-100 points per season (AP photo)

Say good-bye to Kovalchuk and his potential 90-100 points per season (AP photo)

In return for the pair, the Thrashers gain defenseman Johnny Oduya, forward Nicklas Bergfors, prospect center Patrice Cormier and the Devils first round draft pick this summer.

Let me start off with the two things I actually like about the transaction…first, there is the Oduya part of the transaction. If you tear apart the whole and examine this one part of the deal, we are swapping out Salmela for the 28-year old Swede. I think this is an immediate upgrade on defense. Certainly I think Salmela could turn out to be a fine player, but this helps in the “right now”, IMHO.

I’ll be curious to see how John Anderson shuffled the defensive pairing with Johnny in the lineup.

The second part of the trade that makes me happy…simply the fact that this whole sorted affair is finally over. The Kovalchuk contract drama that has hung over the team like…well, the rainy overcast skies that are with us today…and the team has been severely distracted by the proceedings, regardless of what some close to the organization may say. So, there is no excuse anymore…Kovy’s gone and so too the drama that sucked all the focus away form the players.

Now, with all of that said, what we are then left with is Ilya Kovalchuk…who is on pace for something like 95 points…being replaced in the lineup by Nicklas Bergfors…he of 13 goals and 14 assists in 54 games this season. He’s played a total of 63 NHL games with 28 overall points.

Really Don?…I mean, really?

Now, this isn’t meant to be a knock on Bergfors…and is it too soon to already start calling him “Bergie”? Fact is that it looks like he’s a player that can fit right into Colby Armstrong’s slot when Donny trades him away in the coming days. But how in the world can Don Waddell seriously look the fans square in the eyes and tell them that this helps us at all in any hopeful run for this springs post-season?

Then of course there are the two other pieces in the deal..a QMJHL player who cannot play in that league for the rest of the season given his suspension due to a flagrant hit to an opponent’s head…and a draft selection that will fall somewhere around pick number 26 or 27, if not higher.

Say hello to Johnny Oduya. He has 2 goals, 2 assists, a +2 rating and 18 PIM in 40 games this season (AP Photo/ David Duprey)

Say hello to Johnny Oduya, seen on left. He has 2 goals, 2 assists, a +2 rating and 18 PIM in 40 games this season (AP Photo/ David Duprey)

Those players may or may not work out in the future, and we’ll just have to wait and see how they eventually pan out…you know, much like the prospect and player Don obtained two years ago in the Marian Hossa deal.

Lastly, the two teams swapped 2nd round picks which…if I’m not mistaken…benefits New Jersey because I have a sneaking suspicion the Devils are gonna wind up a little better in the standings then are your Atlanta Thrashers.

So, as for the deal overall as a whole…color me unimpressed.

I guess what bugs the pure livin’ snot outa me the most this morning is the fact that the ONE thing I feared happening…seems to have happened. That being a trade that will more than likely leave us two years down the road no better than today and waiting to see how a couple of pick and prospects develop in order to deem the Kovalchuk transaction a “success” or not.

You know…just like we are now Hossa +2 years.

Now, let me respond preemptively to the most commonly used defense that I heard after the Hossa deal…and so far after the Kovy one. It’s the one that goes something like “But Waddell did the best he could considering the circumstances”.

Really?

Well, I just gotta be honest with ya…I am just sick and damn tired of see this Thrashers teams formed and shaped because Don Waddell found himself in a less-than-favorable circumstance. We have, for over a decade now, seen great players come and go…leaving D-Wad to have to clean up afterwards “the best he can”.

This organization needs a general manager that can direct the circumstances that make up his team…not simply “do the best he can” to make lemonade out of lemons.

After the Kovalchuk trade, the Thrashers are...

  • Closer to the Stanley Cup (3%, 7 Votes)
  • Further away from the Cup (70%, 174 Votes)
  • About the same (27%, 67 Votes)

Total Voters: 248

Loading ... Loading ...

Ya know…I don’t think Kovalchuk, or Hossa for that matter, rejected the offers Don Waddell made them when contract time came around. No, moreover I think it was more a rejection of what this team has become…and probably will be…under the management of Don Waddell and the Great Octocluster that is our current ownership.

In closing…I leave you with the one question that, to me, really is the only one that matters. Don Waddell possessed the crown jewel in this years trade deadline period…and we now see what he did with it. So I ask you, is this team any closer to the Stanley Cup then we were 24 hours ago…or are we a little further away?

It may be raining and cloudy outside today…but I think the answer to that is still clearly seen.

241 comments Add your comment

Matt

February 5th, 2010
10:52 am

Fire DW NOW!!! And Erste!

KovyPleaseStayotNot

February 5th, 2010
10:53 am

What does it say about Atlanta’s ownership that a guy – any guy – would turn down $101 million dollars to play here? If Kovy wants to win, he needs to go elsewhere. I see no reason for him to accept any offer -no matter how huge- if it means he’ll waste the prime of his career on a middling team which will never contend for the Cup while it’s run by this group of incompetent owners.

World Be Free

February 5th, 2010
10:53 am

We are light years away.
Hossa, Heatley, Kovy- 3 of the top 4 goal scorders of the decade all gone.

J.B.

February 5th, 2010
10:56 am

Oduya & Enstrom for a pairing is likely. they’ll be playing on the same olympic team for Sweden in Vancouver.

We may have lost kovalchuk’s scoring but we also disposed of his defensive liability.

I think our goals against are going to go down and there’s going to be alot more action toward the crease rather than out at the line.

I think Kovy became predictable to an extent and it worked against us. Now players will have to do something else other than pass back to kovy for a one-timer from the left circle.

I’m hopeful. This whole ordeal may be good for the team as long as we can keep them in town.

It’s worth noting that the dealing is surely not done with three goalies and so many pending free agents.

We could pick up some surpise pieces that will add scoring as well.

Telfo

February 5th, 2010
10:57 am

you sound like Jeff Schultz Bill. What did you expect him to get? this is a very good return for a rental and DW already said we will be making more moves pre-deadline. i assume to add a scorer or two.

maybe we will finally have a TEAM instead of superstars alone.

Lex

February 5th, 2010
11:00 am

Would any of you Hockey Ladies who are upset over Kovy’s departure like to cuddle?

Adam

February 5th, 2010
11:02 am

I wanted to say about the same because with this tool of a GM it didn’t matter if Kovy was here or not the rest of the pieces would never had been in place to go beyond the 1st round anyway. The reason I went with further was that if the AS ever kicks Donny to the curb and brings in a competent GM…

Ray Ferraro's Bobble Head Doll

February 5th, 2010
11:04 am

Did you think the team would be better off after trading Kovalchuk? That’s a little unrealistic (at this point). The value of Kovy diminished once his max salary demands were made. It essentially eliminated most teams from even thinking about trading for him (and signing him to an extension). Who was going to give up great value for a rental?

Mike

February 5th, 2010
11:05 am

Waddell needs to go, but this one is not on him. It’s on a greedy superstar. Blame the player here folks.

hip czech

February 5th, 2010
11:05 am

J.B….to echo your thought – everyone focuses on losing Kovalchuk’s 30 goals. But we are also disposing of his forever minus +/-. A 20 goal scorer who is a plus player seems to me to be a better deal.

Let’s see how we play now that we don’t have to play shorthanded for 22 minutes a game and the power play isn’t one dimensional.

Yep, what happened to the 3 goalie situation being addressed by this past Monday? Lehtonen may be gone after another start or two in Chicago, or Moose gone at the deadline. Wonder if Kozlov would waive his NTC? I saw some chatter about maybe him going back to Detroit at the deadline.

Krust

February 5th, 2010
11:06 am

Get those fire Waddell tee shirts ready. I am having one made today for the game Saturday.
Sad cloudy day. This is such a disturbing pattern. If I was some of the players I would be pissed. I hope they can get up for the game tonight. Fire Waddell now!

R. W.

February 5th, 2010
11:07 am

The scary part is that Don Wadell is gonna be in charge of making those deals as well. I hope he has a little better luck. But I sure as heck am not banking on it. I honestly think he has no clue when it comes to evaluating talent and making trades. That being said even a squirrel can find a nut somedays.

Buzz

February 5th, 2010
11:07 am

1) You can’t pay any player 20 percent of the cap.

2) The Thrashers should trade anyone of value NOW and try to get draft picks and start all over again. I would dump Hainsey, Kubina, Lehtonen, Afinogenov, Antropov ASAP. Try to find players with 1 year left on their contract and try to find 2nd round picks at least.

3) I would fire Waddell. He cannot draft, and we have hired someone that is allegedly good at it, but Waddell will ruin it somehow.

4) Start fresh, build around Kane, Pavelec, Bogosian, Little, Bergfors, Peverly. That is a good young core but you need snipers. I would keep also keep Enstrom, Valabik, Reasoner, Slater and Thorburn. I would pursue Mueller (phoenix), Filatov (columbus), Brunnstrom (dallas) and Okposo (a stretch but at least TRY).

With nice draft picks and prudent free-agent hires, we could have a quality squad in 2 years.

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
11:08 am

I think Don won a small battle (this trade), but it was a war of his making we never should have been in. Brendan, WBF and all the other great posters who were screaming for a contract or trade last summer look smartest in this whole debacle.

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
11:12 am

maybe we will finally have a TEAM instead of superstars alone

Telfo – I can only hope you are correct.

Did you think the team would be better off after trading Kovalchuk? That’s a little unrealistic (at this point). The value of Kovy diminished once his max salary demands were made. It essentially eliminated most teams from even thinking about trading for him (and signing him to an extension). Who was going to give up great value for a rental?

Ray Ferraro’s Bobble Head Doll - First off…great username! I can’t say your comments are incorrect…but, like I said in the psot, my frustration lies more in the fact that Waddell was once again placed in the situtaion. There’s a reason Kovy wanted to leave…and I thin a lot of it has to do with a lack of faith that the franchise is actually moving in the right direction.

Part of that is DW…part is Octocluster.

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
11:16 am

“Ya know…I don’t think Kovalchuk, or Hossa for that matter, rejected the offers Don Waddell made them when contract time came around. No, moreover I think it was more a rejection of what this team has become…and probably will be…under the management of Don Waddell and the Great Octocluster that is our current ownership.”

Well… DUH!!!!! :)

Daculafan

February 5th, 2010
11:16 am

I’m not extremely impressed either with the deal..and I feel ya on the whole master of our own destiny angle. I have been a supporter of D-Wad for a long while..but that has come to an end with this whole mess.

I don’t think this is ALL on him…I think that Kovy shares some of the blame for the situation we found ourselves in and I think that Jay Grossman has really over sold his client and it’s probably going to wind up biting them in that fleshy area that he sits on.

Are we any closer?…further away?…same?…I say the same..light years away…we were with Kovy and we are without him…yes he scores goals…but he also stands there with cranial-rectal inversion and watches plenty of them slip past the net minder that’s murdering himself out there night in and night out.

I think that the mentality of the team has always been driven by “give it to Kovy” now without him as a crutch I’ll be interested to see who steps up to the plate.

Honestly I’m going to be interested in seeing how well Kovy survives in the defense minded system of the Devils, where two way responsibility is on EVERYBODY..no matter what your position with the club is. I think he’ll find himself in ole Jacques dog house rather quickly and since he’s a rental I bet that the coach won’t waste any time letting him sleep there.

J.B.

February 5th, 2010
11:17 am

Buzz – Filatov is a team cancer. Left/Sent away from CBJ and then stripped of his C in his last Jr. Tourney I believe.

Hip Czech – Glad we see eye to eye. “Let’s see how we play now that we don’t have to play shorthanded for 22 minutes a game and the power play isn’t one dimensional.” That quote is spot on. Our opponents won’t know what to expect now that Kovy isn’t running the same play every trip down the ice.

Thrashers have become wildly unpredictable on and off the ice (with other trades) and that’s great.

Rawhide – There is quite a whiff of Schultzy in this column. I’m surprised. Certainly you didn’t expect us to get more than we did.

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
11:17 am

RW – DW isn’t the talent scout any more, Dudley is. And is shows with our draft (Kane, Klingberg, Morin) and this trade. Dudley doesn’t want to be GM – he’s at a comfortable spot of doing what he likes without having us all scream for his scalp constantly.

Buzz – I totally agree, except for Antro. He’s been selflessly picking up defensively after Kovy all year and I admire him for it. We could have over $10 M in budget room ($15 M in cap space) even with resigning Little, Pavs, Army(?), Slats, Bergfors and signing Kulda and Cormier to big boy contracts. Hello, Patrick Sharp… plus one more $5 M forward.

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
11:18 am

My question is how do Burke, Sutter, and Sather all seem to get more for less than Don did for Kovy? At least for the here and now they did… and I want to actually, you know, MAKE the playoffs, not keep living for two, three years down the road… that is my issue with this trade.

MASHAPlayer7

February 5th, 2010
11:18 am

JB-my thoughts exactly. I still don’t like what our team has become – and am overdone sick of the owners and management – but I am sadistically excited about seeing what this franchise can do with an actual team, and not just one lazy superstar and a bunch of supporting parts. We need to start operating like a small market team, because that is what we are (think: Nashville and their “sum is greater than the parts” approach year after year).

raindawg722

February 5th, 2010
11:19 am

Here’s the quote that is most telling from the Waddell interview:

Only thing I can say, this isn’t a knock of Kovy, it’s a knock on all of us, Kovy’s been here eight years and we still haven’t won a playoff game.

While I can appreciate that Waddell takes accountability for his role in this organization’s lack of success, it does not excuse that fact. I have zero ability to evaluate hockey talent. Skating backwards is amazing to me so I won’t comment on the substance of the players that the Thrashers received in the trade. However, having grown up watching the Braves become a model for how a professional sports team should be run, I can recognize the difference between a successful organization and one that is not successful.

Successful organizations are able to develop their own talent. By paying these players relatively less than established stars for the first few years in the league, they can use the rest of their payroll to sign the one or two key free agents to fill any holes in the roster. This allows them to remain competitive with other teams that have higher payrolls.

Successful organizations do not build through free agency.

Successful organizations are often able to sign their own players and other free agents at below market value because those players want to be a part of that organization.

Successful organizations rarely lose players they want to keep.

Successful organizations are not constantly in rebuilding mode. They are able to successfully mix the young players they develop with their current established players.

Successful organizations can accurately evaluate the talent of their players and the players of other organizations. When they trade with other organizations, most of the time they will get exactly what they expected out of the trade.

The Thrashers possess none of those characteristics. I will give them credit for trying to develop their own players so they can remain competitive without having to max their cap space, but for this strategy to be effective, you have to accurately evaluate talent. Their past player personnel record gives me little faith in their ability to do so.

The Thrashers had no choice but to trade Kovy. And Waddell was right. What has the team accomplished in the time Kovy was here? But who is the one person in the organization who’s been around even longer than Kovy was? What has the team accomplished in the time that he’s been here? Don Waddell seems like a fine guy, but I wish that someone else had been making that trade for the Thrashers.

Toby

February 5th, 2010
11:21 am

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
11:22 am

Operation Tankland 2010 begins today. A few have pointed out the Thrashers are within points of the playoffs. That’s true.

However, the Thrashers are also within points of another lottery pick.

After we lose the next few games before the Olympic break, the Thrashers will be seeded in the lottery pick group. And thus, Operation Tankland 2010 has begun.

If anyone thinks the Thrashers will be buyers at the trade deadline, you must have inhaled. The only thing the Thrashers will be buying at the trade deadline is prospects/picks/rejects from trading Kubina, Armstrong, Hedberg, Afinogenov, and Kozlov if he’ll waive his NTC.

The ASG better be ready to lower ticket prices next season, or maybe, they already have a buyer lined up, because, after the upcoming fire sale, the Thrashers will be a Calder Cup team.

DWTOO

February 5th, 2010
11:27 am

This is a definite step back! And there’s plenty of blame to go around. As has been posted here earlier Kovy should have been traded in July – the return would have been much greater. But Waddell and others (me inlcuded) bought into Kovy’s story about wanting to be a Thrasher for life. And I wouldn’t have blamed him for wanting to move on – this outfit, the ASG, SUCKS! So we glom onto Kovy’s line get strung along all season and them the GM’s hand is forced at the last minute and we get a fire sale trade.

At this point I don’t see anyone with a brain giving us equal value for a guy who can leave in July.

ASG – please sell the team to someone who likes and understands hockey and is willing to hire the right people to run it. Until then we’re stuck.

Also – think the return was OK. Johnny O. is solid and the Bergfors kid has potential. And with Comrier we finally have our own Avery.

Yankee

February 5th, 2010
11:28 am

Yeah but does DW and the Octocluster (good name!) understand our frustration? What are we as fan’s doing about it (and the media for that matter – who is pressing DW and ownership for hard answers)? I understand not going to games but the rest of the NHL just thinks we are not a hockey town.

What is the collective effort we (the fans) are doing to tell upper management we are sick and tired of this crap?!?!

I keep thinking of the movie Major League. If they stink bad enough, we can move them to a better place (ownership’s thinking).

Mr. Heat Miser

February 5th, 2010
11:39 am

Let the caterwauling and gnashing of teeth begin.
Yeah, I’ll be at the game Saturday night. Gonna yell and lead FIRE DW chants from up above. If I get kicked out I’ll go back to the truck and get another jersey and come back in. Gonna raise as much hell as I can.

Russ

February 5th, 2010
11:39 am

…and the battle goes on between Atlanta and Columbus to see who can claim the title as the most inept franchise in the NHL.

If the NHL was more popular I think the Thrashers would be the standard by which ineptness is measured rather than the L.A. Clippers.

It amazes me that people can still defend DW. Your loyalty is unwavering in the face of unbelieveable amounts of evidence against him. At this point I think he would have to go to a game and open fire on the 200 people there to lose your support.

Bob

February 5th, 2010
11:42 am

If some of you guys think Kovy left over money, you need to stop sniffing Waddell’s jock, step back, and take a whiff of reality.

He left because of Waddell and this horrible ownership. He left and he’ll wind up taking about the same money, or less money, from someone else who has a GM and ownership team that can put together a winner.

Why would Kovy want to tie himself to play here under Waddell and know he has no hopes of a Cup for the rest of his career? Kovy even just said he’ll keep his home here and this will be his 2nd home. It’s not about money, folks. It’s about Waddell and the Spirit. Same with Hossa, same with Heatley.

The day they fire Waddell and bring a real GM in here is the day that many of us former season ticket holders will return. The day they bring a real GM in is the day we have hope again. The day they bring a real GM in is when the players will want to stay here and compete and win.

Wake me up when that day comes.

Until then, the best thing you can do is stop subsidizing the incompetence of Don Waddell and stop making excuses for him. Those fans who naively have made excuses for him from the early ones are just as culpable in this mess as Waddell is. Why? Because you enabled him and you enabled the owners to be able to retain his incompetent year through your support.

Zoomo

February 5th, 2010
11:43 am

>>I am just sick and damn tired of see this Thrashers teams formed and >>shaped because Don Waddell found himself in a less-than-favorable >>circumstance

Bill, I have to agree with you. That is the most disconcenting part of all of this. The ownership and GM have created a place where very few players want to play, and that in turn continues to let this “Groundhog Day” scenario play out.

I don’t agree with the general concensus that we have to be in a 3-4 year re-building phase. Hockey is the one sport where total chemistry can generated a winner. Think about the cups won by the Lightning and ‘Canes. It wasn’t stacked lineups, it was the right pieces in the right places.

If we can manage to do that by adding a few vets in the offseason, and get better goaltending, who knows what we might have. Hopefully, Dudley will be the guy to help pull that off and the decision making will move to him in the near future.

LAC

February 5th, 2010
11:43 am

I have to say I am disappointed in Rawhide this am, in supporting don waddell. Bill just how much more of this THING can we take ?

J(Z)

February 5th, 2010
11:44 am

Anyone think there was any chance we could’ve gotten Jokinen and Phaneuf for Kovy?

Scotty

February 5th, 2010
11:44 am

The Cup is ours.

Todd White

February 5th, 2010
11:44 am

The trade of Kovalchuk will now allow new captain Todd White to show everyone that he was the real superstar of this team. Todd will score 30 goals and have 35 assists in the last 27 games, with a +62, to lead Atlanta into the final playoff spot. Then Todd will lead us to victory against Washington in the first round, an ironic 4 game sweep over the Rangers in the second round, and an amazing game seven win over the Devils in the conference finals, when, in a moment of confusion, Kovalchuk muffs a pass on the blue line while on the power play, goes back to get the puck, and thinks he has a breakaway against Brodeur, and shoots the game winning goal into his own net…………..”Todd….Todd….wake up honey, you’ll be late for morning skate”…”Damn!”

Wingsfan0310

February 5th, 2010
11:45 am

If the NHL was more popular I think the Thrashers would be the standard by which ineptness is measured rather than the L.A. Clippers
_______________________________________________________________________________
The Clippers may be bad, but the Lions are the standard of ineptitude!!! Give the Lions the credit they are due.

PB

February 5th, 2010
11:47 am

I am still a little sick to my stomach, but I am also actually excited that I can go watch a power play without assuming that Kovalchuk will give up a breakaway the other way. Now that he is actually gone, I realize that my distaste for Kovalchuk’s commitment level and completely aloof defensive attitude did not outweigh the joy of watching him blast one of those cannons from the point, but it was close.

I am not big on Oduya or Bergfors, and I really don’t like losing Salmela along with Kovy, but the only thing I REALLY hate about this deal is the Thrashers acquisition of that thug Cormier. I don’t care if he could be a good third liner some day, he is a cowardly piece of $#*!. As a fan of hockey, the video of his hit on Michael Tam made me want to puke, and it is not a was not his first time doing something of that caliber. There are a few of them on YouTube. If you haven’t seen them, you should check it out and form your own opinion.

I have one bottom line that I am clinging to, mostly in order to preserve my own sanity in this mess. Kovalchuk could not get this team near the playoffs. He was not enough, and I actually think he took away from the development of other players by being the entire offensive focus of this team. I think now that he is gone, we will see a mild resurgence of Brian Little, less of that stupid extra pass resulting in no shots from someone right in front of the net, and a Slava Kozlov that knows he needs to score some more to help this team survive. Max will fall off the map a little bit because nobody knew where he was going like Ilya did, but in the overall, I am hopeful that this team can surprise all of us with the level of success that they can have after losing one of the best offensive (and one of the most mediocre defensive) players on earth.

One very interesting thought that keeps me going too (and I know I might take a hard time for this), but what if Kovy really does sign back here in Atlanta after the season is over? Could there be a better team for him to have gone to than the NJ Devils for a brief respite from our playoff Siberia? What if the Devils teach him how to be not-completely-useless on defense? You KNOW the way he did it here will not fly with their organization. What if NJ gives Ilya a taste of what the playoffs are like, and he then decides that he can feed his kids on what the Thrashers would pay him, and comes back to give us that playoff feeling. With Oduya subbing for Anssi and this Bergfors kid working out? And that my friends, is my optimistic pipe-dream of the day. I hope it gives you the same comfort it gives me. And now, I am going to buy a lottery ticket. Powerball, not one of those 10%-chance-to-win jobs.

So, in summary, I’ll be in my season ticket seats on Saturday night, giving this new Thrashers team a chance to earn my renewal for next year. I’ll probably be wearing black, but I’ll be there.

Miami Screaming Eagle

February 5th, 2010
11:48 am

Today-the day after Kovy is traded reminds me of one of a line from one of my favorite Steely Dan tunes–

“When Black Friday comes, I’ll stand out by the door and catch grey men when they dive from the 14th floor”

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
11:48 am

Let’s look at it this way… Would any of you be willing to give up Toby Enstrom, Brian Little, Spencer Machacek and a 1st Rounder for Patrick Marleau as a rental?

That’s almost what this deal equates to.

hip czech

February 5th, 2010
11:51 am

Hokie, well played sir…

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
11:53 am

He left because of Waddell and this horrible ownership. He left and he’ll wind up taking about the same money, or less money, from someone else who has a GM and ownership team that can put together a winner.

I keep thinking of the Seinfeld episode where George turns down the NBC contract offer and then has to settle for less money… “Let me get this straight… you held out… for LESS money.” :)

Russ

February 5th, 2010
11:54 am

The Clippers may be bad, but the Lions are the standard of ineptitude!!! Give the Lions the credit they are due.

Wingsfan0310 – Sorry to have overlooked the Lions. How long was Millen in charge there? Certainly not as long as DW’s ongoing tenure. The fact that he still has a job is beyond ridiculous.

Ray Ferraro's Bobble Head Doll

February 5th, 2010
11:55 am

I agree, Rawhide. DW isn’t doing the greatest job, but I think the bigger problem is ownership. Not spending to the cap limit is ownership. My only complaint with DW on this issue, is that he should have traded Kovy last year. If the rest of the league thinks Kovy is crazy, and he ends up in the KHL next year, that may make this a little easier to stomach. As it is, I think DW did OK with the trade (at this point)…given the circumstances. DW needs Cormier and/or Esposito to show us something next year. Not sure he’ll be around for that though…eventually the owners will start pointing fingers, and DW will be an easy target.

Randy in Conyers

February 5th, 2010
11:55 am

Bottom line – DW misread the Hossa and Kovy situations. Both players weren’t going to stay and both should have been dealt prior to their last season with the Thrash. We might have ended up with players who actually want to be here and wouldn’t have had to listen to all the BS leading up to these last minute player rental trades.

Phil Myre

February 5th, 2010
11:59 am

I am as happy as a tornado in a trailer park,I have been watching for 8 years this overpaid figure skater hog the puck,give it away @ the blueline,and generally one-way this TEAM into the bottom half of the Eastern conference.I promise you that you will now see the real Nik Antropov,that will pick up the scoring and replace “MR ME”.You won’t see a winger wide open in the offensive zone with his head on a swivel looking for a floating #17 to HAVE to pass to,so that he won’t whine about not getting all the offensive looks,you also may see people crashing the net as we have been screaming about for years.I won’t spill another adult beverage when he tries to go 1 one 4 to try to up his numbers.Thanks D-Wad,I would have thought you could get more in return,but now you got lots of cash to wave at FA’s.A couple of 20 goal scorers would be nice.Get on with the other pieces to better this club!!!!

Russ

February 5th, 2010
12:01 pm

Enstrom > Oduya
Little > Bergfors
Thrashers 1st rounder > Devils 1st rounder
Marleau < Kovalchuk

Not a fair comparison IMO.

Nikita

February 5th, 2010
12:02 pm

*My question is how do Burke, Sutter, and Sather all seem to get more for less than Don did for Kovy?*

They trade from a position of strength, and we trade from a position weakness. It’s always been like that.

I’m fineish with the trade, though I asked Santa to get me Marian Gaborik or Michael Ryder and he didn’t come through.

I never want to see Cormier in blue. Everyone else I’m happy with.

And I get tired of everyone treating the team like it’s Kovalchuk and a bunch of scrubs. That’s how it was structured as long as we kept Kovalchuk and had to feed his lazy, one-way ways. But when Kovy was injured, the team was .500. That’s not good enough for a playoff berth, but with another piece or two, or even if the guys we got can contribute a little, we may see the team be fairly effective. One thing’s for sure: we won’t be seeing the other team watching and neutralizing Kovalchuk.

So, I’ll miss the guy. But I won’t miss his cost to the team.

ThrasherTim

February 5th, 2010
12:03 pm

Rawhide –
I think your post is right on. We as fans as sick of this scenario and having to wait and re-build another 2 years out. It’s pretty obvious that the elite players in this league DON’T believe in the management and ownership. When Armstrong, Kubina and Max don’t want to sign and stay, then what? More trades to ‘gain assets’? Wow, I am fired up to drive down to Philips now and cheer on….?

We have had trouble scoring goals of late with Kovalchuk and pretty decent efforts. Who is going to step up? Players should have been stepping up all along as we have been cratering since Thanksgiving. Only a handful of teams have beaten the Caps at home this year..and they are firing on all cylinders right now. Then we have a 3-game road trip before the break. 1-4 seems likely, maybe 2-3.

I am glad this is over and glad we traded before the Olympics and didn’t risk a Kovvy injury — but we are going to have to go something like 2 wins every 3 games after the break to maybe have a chance at the playoffs and obviously, unless we suddenly ‘gel’ as a ‘team’, that sounds improbable and a lottery pick again is not out of the question.

Don – thanks for the letter to fans explaining your plight — but you TOTALLY mis-read Kovvy and the tea leaves and for that alone – you should be fired. This is unacceptable…again. I have had enough.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
12:07 pm

Mr. Heat Miser – I’ll be leading the FI-RE WAD-DELL charge from Section 222.

It’s time to exercise our right to free, not vile, speech.

I encourage EVERYONE to join with me Saturday night as I chant “FI-RE WAD-DELL” using “THE BULLHORN” until my voice is completely shot.

Two years ago, several mediocre “FI-RE WAD-DELL’ chants were heard throughout the building. It’s time for all to join in, have some guts, and try and save hockey in Atlanta.

If you already have seats, don’t toss them, protest, be heard.

I guarantee you the PA music guy will try to drown us out. Thrash will try to drown us out. Be relentless.

If you want to support the team and players, help extricate this baffoon that is destroying this franchise one year at a time. If you want to continue to lose lottery pick after lottery pick, do nothing.

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
12:08 pm

I’m with Russ, I don’t think the comparision is true at all.. The Devils 1st round pick is like getting a 2nd round pick, ours is sure to be top five again… Toby is better than Johnny O.. and right now I’ll take Little over Bergors…

Russ

February 5th, 2010
12:09 pm

Scotty – Your 11:44 post had me laughing out loud.

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
12:10 pm

I would love to protest ownership outside of Phillips. Maybe we can make a little noise doing that. All three of us!

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
12:10 pm

Rawhide – There is quite a whiff of Schultzy in this column. I’m surprised. Certainly you didn’t expect us to get more than we did.

J.B. – Honestly and for true? Hey, I tried to put the positives first, ya know :cool:

Brett

February 5th, 2010
12:10 pm

Players that want to be here?? Do you think Oduya and Bergfors want to be here? They leave a class organization run by a true GM to the laughing stock of the league. I bet they’re pi$$ed! Any available UFA isn’t going to be lining up to play in this nut house of an organization. All we’ll attract are players who are at the end of their careers …..or have no other options any where else until this organization changes. Unfortunately it doesn’t look like change is in the near future, so sit back and enjoy mediocrity!

Jeff97

February 5th, 2010
12:11 pm

Rawhide,
would you have rather the Thrashers pay him max money? I for one dont think he is worth that. Ovechkins contract is 13 year 124 million. thats about 9.5 per year. We offered Kovy a lifetime contract worth about 8.5 mil or a 7 year deal worth 10 million. I give it to you that our ownership stinks, but DW cant control that. When other teams saw how much money Kovy was asking for, the market shrunk dramatically. There are only a few teams out there that can take on that kind of salary and no one is going to give you premium multiple players for a rental player, it just wont happen.

This team needs to find a new indentity, stick with a system and get a real good goaltender. Look at Buffalo, they are a perfect example. no stars other than Ryan Miller.

I will be curious to see what we can do with all this cap money now that Kovy is gone. There are teams such as Chicago that will have to dump good players that they simply cant afford.

If Waddell sits on that cap money or screws it up, then we get what we deserve, but lets see what happens before the trade deadline and even into the off season.

Pittsburgh Pirate Fan

February 5th, 2010
12:13 pm

I am officially changing my name from Miami Screaming Eagle to Pittsburgh Pirate Fan. Why? Because I want to get the full effect of continually trading star players for very little, or letting them walk for nothing then “rebuild for the future”. So here it is folks, my identification with being inept.

There is good news-pitchers and catchers report at the end of the month.

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
12:13 pm

Unfortunately it doesn’t look like change is in the near future, so sit back and enjoy mediocrity!

Brett – You know…I think you’ve found next year’s Thrashers campaign slogan. This year it was “The Hockey Way”.

Now, it can be “Thrashers hockey…feh, we’re just OK”.

Wingsfan0310

February 5th, 2010
12:13 pm

Russ, it was 7 long miserable years. Like the Thrashers it doesn’t end with Millen, the real problem is the owernership. William Clay Ford has owned the Lions since the 1964, with 0 Superbowls and a grand total of 1 playoff win.

billandjessie

February 5th, 2010
12:14 pm

Great blog Bill… I couldn’t agree more. In the end, regardless of what I think about losing Kovy, the thing that galls me the most is DW trying to “spin” this to the fans (or what’s left of them!). As the old saying goes “Stupidity is doing the same thing over and over and expecing a different outcome.” I’m sick and tired of seeing the same thing done over and over with the SAME outcomes. We’re always “building for the future”. What a croc!!!

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
12:18 pm

Jeff97 – No…I never thought DW should pay Kovy “max salary”. However, I am judging his management as a whole. This latest situation is just another in a long line of disappointments. Like Nikita says…we always deal from a position of weakness. I’m tied of that.

Look at what Burke did in Toronto. He’s got a plan…bring in a solid, reliable keeper…and then put a big, dependable defender in front of him…build from there.

Don…? Well, it’s just “do the best he can given the circumstances”.

Agree with you 100% about the team identity thing. Hopefully that can happen with this team…if so, then maybe this mess can get turned around.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
12:18 pm

Jesus, it’s like arguing with first graders…

Toby Enstrom is a Top 4 defenseman… so is Oduya.
Brian Little is a Top 6 forward with RFA status… so is Bergfors… Little might be slightly better because of his one 30 goal season, but he’s certainly not going to repeat that this year… I call them fairly equal. (I certainly wasn’t going to use Kane for this example. Little is the closest comparison).

As the draft pick goes… we’re assuming we make the playoffs with Marleau, so consider it a 20-30 pick just like the Devils pick.

We wouldn’t trade for Marleau if we were going to end up with a Top 5 pick… come on fellas.

drajax

February 5th, 2010
12:22 pm

lets stop the whining and see if the team can be led by their Coach the remainder of the season to a playoff spot. I’m tired of watching the other players waiting for Kovy to carry the team or for Kovy to get that one good shot on the power play. This hasn’t been team hockey and every successful team with a superstar has a strong supporting cast. We haven’t had the supporting players for reasons I can’t fathom (ok, blame Waddell) however, that doesn’t mean that the contingent we have now will not be able to get together and win by playing defense and hard checking.

World Be Free

February 5th, 2010
12:23 pm

Tired of talking about it, so I am going to focus on tonight and Saturday night. Maybe the rest of these guys can come together, under a new captain and be a decent team. I’ll take decent right now.

PS-the new captain should avoid the childish, emotional outbursts we were so accustom to with Kovy. The leader needs to be a clutch player, who excels at both ends of the rink and has the respect of the players AND THE FANS! I think I just described Rich Peverly, with Marty and Hainsey wearing the A’s.

Kovy’s gone folks, let’s move forward.

Bob

February 5th, 2010
12:27 pm

Enstrom > Oduya
Little > Bergfors
Thrashers 1st rounder > Devils 1st rounder
Marleau < Kovalchuk

"Not a fair comparison IMO"

No kidding. The funniest part is comparing Kovy to Marleau.

Hokie, what little credibility you have goes completely out the window when you post tripe like that. Get a grip and quit sniffing Waddell's jock. The arena is empty because most all season tix holders caught on long ago to Waddell's ineptness. Heatley, Hossa, Kovy et al don't stay here because they know Waddell's ineptness.

Stop subsidizing and enabling it. If you truly love this club, you will demand they get a real GM in here. Or you can keep being a part of the problem and keep enabling the Spirit to retain Waddell. Remember, the only reason the owners have this team is to try to make money. Quit giving them yours and demand a better product.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
12:27 pm

Bob

February 5th, 2010
12:28 pm

“Furthermore… Patrick Marleau is better than Kovalchuk right now.:”

dude, stop while you’re behind . . .

Riceowls8891

February 5th, 2010
12:37 pm

Bergfors’ 13 goals and 27 points places him 3rd and 6th respectively. Playing for New Jersey. He was doing fine (26 in 39) until he was taken out of the top 6 and his ice time dropped to less than 13 minutes per game. Because New Jersey got healthy, not because of bad play.

So maybe we don’t see Kovy’s 20 goals over the last 30 games, but maybe we get 10. The rest of the underperfomrers will just have to step up.

Little better than Bergfors? Not this year. Bergfors is better in goals and plus minus.

Tobie better than Oduya? Oduya has more goals and a better plus minus. Tobie leads in assists.

Are they better? We’ll see. They have a choice: Confirm that Atlanta was Ilya and the Kovalchuks or step up, play as a team and stick it to everyone. I fear its the former. I hope its the latter.

Anyway, hopefully our power play got less predictable, and a little better.

Besides, in October, we’ll still have 4 assets, and Jersey will have nothing. (Well, maybe a Cup but the Thrashers weren’t going to win that anyway.)

Thrashers27

February 5th, 2010
12:41 pm

Anybody think Kovy will come back and sign a new contract with the Thrashers in the Summer?

ATL Native hockey fan

February 5th, 2010
12:41 pm

Guys, Yes Kovalchuck is gone, So is the Prima Dona attitude. Now the thrashers have room for several players to shine instead of a focus on a non effective captain/player.

I have seen Kane, Bogo, Army, and even White leave every bit of themselves on the ice after a game. For the last few months can you say the same about Kovalchuk? and no that tantrum the other night doesn’t count.

Yes Waddell and ASG need to be held accountable for the way they have run this team and the fans into the ground, But we still need to support the rest of the team….. Kovalchuk was not the TEAM. He was an ineffective part of that team.

I wish the Team the best of luck and now maybe we will see some glimmer of hope.

TableHockey

February 5th, 2010
12:42 pm

On paper we certainly can still make the playoffs. March has a very favorable schedule for us. In 17 games we will have 8 games against teams with fewer points than us and 5 games with teams that have 4 or less points more than us.

To me the important thing is how well the team bounces back after the trade. We have to get out of February into the Olympic break with some points. We cannot go 0 for February. We certainly can’t go into April needing points as we will face the Pens twice, the Caps twice, and our former Captain’s team once.

Points will be hard to come by in April but it could be a good primer for the team if we are a lock for the playoffs at the end of March.

The only downside of making the playoffs is that the ASG folk will herald DW as the hero. I am willing to lose Kovy and not go the playoffs if the end result is DW not getting renewed at the end of this season.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
12:44 pm

dude, stop while you’re behind . . .

Um, did you click on the link… and did I not say “right now”?

5 Holer

February 5th, 2010
12:48 pm

I understand Kovalchuk wanted way too much to keep him here… but out of all the teams in the “Kovi Sweepstakes” we got this? The Bruins, Flyers, Rangers, Blackhawks, Kings didn’t offer a little more talent than this??????? Hard to believe!

James Brown

February 5th, 2010
12:52 pm

Bill………… a lot has been made about Cormiers` hit that resulted in a season ending suspension but I am not going to throw this kid under the bus for that hit.Granted it was immature and dirty but it was blown up even bigger because Patrick Roy coaches the Quebec team. If he was a prospect of a Canadian team instead of an American team it probably gets swept under the rug. He was the key to the trade and DW was not going to make this deal unless he was included. I like his grit to go along with somewhat high skills. I think he will mature…………….Leadership qualities are there (Captain of The Canadian Juniors). I can`t predict the future but I see a bright upside with this kid. As soon as the Junior league is done I would have him playing at Chicago. You go back to the Hossa deal and I can`t blame Don completely……Esposito had a great upside and was improving………..who knew he would blow out both his knees……..He still may come back and be a force.

That being said…….ten years is long enough…….new leadership is needed…the Table is not empty……lots of young talent and a great core to build around………We just need to go in a differnt directioin as far as the GM goes.

Russ

February 5th, 2010
12:53 pm

“Furthermore… Patrick Marleau is better than Kovalchuk right now.:”

dude, stop while you’re behind . . .

And they have been playing with similar linemates all season, right?

World Be Free

February 5th, 2010
12:54 pm

Table-I was just looking at the March schedule; it certainly is favorable for us. I think the team has to move forward on resigning the UFAs we want to keep, with the hopes of solidifying the core of pleayers that are left. I am not delusional that this team can go anywhere, but………

Marleau vs. Kovy- Marleau was stripped of his captaincy in San Jose after underachieving for a long period. He’s playing on one of the better teams in the league, so there is less pressure on Marleau to be “the man” vs what was expect of Kovy in ATL. Marleau is a great player, but not a team leader. He would struggle mightily in Atlanta without talent around him to protect him.

Kovy is going to one of the better teams in the East and he has an opportunity to make the team better. Players like Kovy (strictly as a player) have the ability to create space for other players and make the team better. Strange, as much as we talk about Kovy as being a selfish puck hog, he does have the ability to make others around him better.

SadChris16

February 5th, 2010
12:54 pm

Great trade Don? Want happen to getting a top 5 offensive player or top 5 defense player for kovy did you say something like that. This looks like the hossa deal. We need to win alot games and get to the playoff for me to feel happy about losing Kovy period.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
12:58 pm

Wow… a simple analogy gone haywire… nevermind *shaking head*

Go back to grunts and groans.

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
1:03 pm

FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
1:05 pm

ATTENTION OWNERS…………

FIRE DUMBASS DON, NOW! BEFORE HE HAMSTRINGS AND DESTROYS OUR TEAM ANY MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

EVERYTHING HE TOUCHES TURNS TO S++T!!!!!!

EVERYTHING!!!!!!!!

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
1:05 pm

Will someone force Don Waddell to watch the movie Groundhog Day?

Nikita

February 5th, 2010
1:05 pm

I’m sorry, WBF, but I don’t agree. Kovy was on the negative side way too often to be said to make others better. Someone who makes others better doesn’t negate their scoring upside with turnovers, disinterest, abandoning your D, and so on.

I don’t know how the Kovy trade will go for Joisey. They have one of the best defensive systems in the league and a great goalie, and maybe that will allow them to take advantage of Kovy’s scoring without paying for his defensive laziness. Or maybe Kovy will be held accountable in his privileged little career for the first time, and will finally develop into the player he can be.

So…when are we trading Max?

lilibeter

February 5th, 2010
1:06 pm

I do not blame Kovy for making the decision he made. On the surface it looks like “Holy Wow, Kovy turned down over $101 million dollars!”, but I think it goes deeper than that. Kovy is a great player, and I believe he wants to go down in history as one of the greats. Experience taught him that this was not going to happen as long as he stayed in Atlanta. I am reminded of a conversation I had recently with my husband about Brodeur. I was asking why many still question if Brodeur is the greatest goaltender ever given how he now holds practically every major goaltending record. FIF’s answer was simple – Brodeur doesn’t have the Stanley Cup records and victories to back the “greatest goaltender ever” claim up yet. I think that may very well be the crux of what pushed Kovy away from Atlanta – a city we know he loves. Kovy knew that, even if he scores more goals than anyone else ever has in this league, he would still never go down in history as “the greatest goal scorer ever” with no Stanley Cups under his belt. And I think Kovy believes that the elusive Stanley Cup will always remain just that in Atlanta – elusive.

That being said, I have mixed emotions about Kovy’s departure. I believe that we may very well become a better team without him. The dynamics are always skewed for any team housing a superstar in their midst. That is simply an unavoidable fact of life. It is difficult to play as a true team when one among your team is operating on a different level than the rest, especially if that individual is treated differently as well. I don’t blame Kovy for being great, but I do believe his presence skewed our team so that much of the team’s focus was on him – feeding him the puck so that he could snipe a goal for us. Given the talent that we are now left with, I am encouraged. I truly, truly hope that the Kovy incident doesn’t split the team into factions because, if they can truly band together, I believe we can come out of this better than we were.

Look at it this way. FIF and many others on this blog constantly refer to Anderson’s “system”. Well, I have come to learn that this “system” is defensive oriented, which is why defensemen who truly work his system supposedly reap so many offensive benefits (and yes, I do actually believe that the best offense is a good defense). With the whole team skewed towards feeding Kovalchuk on offense because, admittedly, he is an awful defensive player, how then could our guys truly focus on working JA’s defensive-minded system? I, for one, am interested to see how the team’s defensive dynamic shifts without the superstar focus. And I, for one, am encouraged by what I hope to see.

lilibeter

February 5th, 2010
1:07 pm

Crap. I got all long-winded again.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
1:08 pm

“He left and he’ll wind up taking about the same money, or less money, from someone else who has a GM and ownership team that can put together a winner.”

Like the New York Rangers?? Come on man, Kovy’s delusional if he thinks he can get more money from a contender not named L.A. And I’m not so sure Lombardi’s drinkin’ the kool-aid either. Kovy is not even a Top 12 talent in the NHL and he’s harder to build a team around than any of the top players playing on a Top 12 team right now.

Bob, I respect your viewpoint and normally agree with you (and I’m not saying DWad isn’t culpable in this mess), but it isn’t an either or proposition. All parties are culpable. In my view, the dunderheaded owners are most culpable for obvious reasons. Then Waddell, then Grossman, then Kovy. But Kovy shares in the blame as well. He was annointed King and he pissed in his throne.

Jeff97

February 5th, 2010
1:09 pm

Rawhide,
just remember that the market here and market in Toronto are two vastly different markets. Toronto has much more $$ to spend. Burke spent a lot of money on an aging Giguere (anyone drafted orig by the Whalers has to be old) and Dion Phaneuf who has been a declining player the last year and a half. We have tried that route here when we got players like Zhitnik and Holik, guys on the downside of their careers.

We do have one other thing going for us. Rick Dudley. dont be surprised if he is the GM next year. He did a great job in TB and in Chicago in building those clubs with good young talent. That is why i would not rule out us getting some of Chicagos players either at the deadline this year or during the summer.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
1:11 pm

GaVaHokie – Don’t you get tired of Waddell playing the same record over and over? Uh, “it’s the best I can do, we made a great offer, the player decided to move on.”

Why does (insert name of player) always want to move on. BECAUSE THE ASG AND WADDELL ARE MORONS.

At some point, you must realize that Waddell is the one putting himself in this position, year after year. The man doesn’t learn.

World Be Free

February 5th, 2010
1:11 pm

Nikita-I see where you are coming from. Some nights Kovy was the difference, other nights he was invisible. I promised myself I would not over analyze this situation, so I guess I am going to leave it at that.

rightshot

February 5th, 2010
1:15 pm

Don Waddel couldn’t manage his way out of a wet paper bag.

Stat Man

February 5th, 2010
1:18 pm

Anyone wanting to put their venom away for a couple minutes needs to go to ESPN, where both columnists there actually gave props to Waddell for the deal.

Bottom line – Kovy was not going to sign period. So what ever we got is better than nothing.

Key points to remember:

WE SUCKED with KOVY
WE SUCKED with KOVY & HOSSA
WE SUCKED with KOVY, SAVARD & HEATLEY

What we need is a TEAM – not 1 or 2 “studs” backed up with the likes of an overpaid Kozlov & White.

All this said, however, is the “next step” will never get here until real ownership & real management are brought in.

Tincup9

February 5th, 2010
1:22 pm

Don ruined the market for rentals when he sent a pile of picks, players and our top denfensive prospect for two rentals only to be swept in the playoffs and revert to crap the next year. All the other GMS’s took notes… his Hossa and Kovy deals are the culmination of a decades worth of mistakes and personnel mismanagement.

English Teacher

February 5th, 2010
1:23 pm

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

That’s sums up this “trade”. Honestly, we got nothing for the “crown jewel”.

There better be a cinnamon pretzel in our future very soon, because D-Wad needs to D-Part.

Tincup9

February 5th, 2010
1:24 pm

Interesting reading the boards from the Star Ledger today. They all think Kovy will sign for 5 years and $50M to play for a team with a cup chance. Won’t that be very telling. Is a cup worth $50M?

World Be Free

February 5th, 2010
1:24 pm

Stat-Man, ESPN lost their hockey creditability when they lost Tom Mees. TM was a classy guy, back when the network had REPORTERS and not the current group of amateur comedians. They make me sick.

Riceowls8891

February 5th, 2010
1:28 pm

How about TSN, then? Dreger, McKenzie and Cullen all think Waddell did all right.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
1:29 pm

WE SUCK WITH WADDELL TOO AND HE’S BEEN HERE FROM DAY ONE!

Kaat

February 5th, 2010
1:32 pm

How depressing it is to go through this every year. But we can all take heart — now we have nobody of note, so we won’t have to do it again next year!

But I have to agree with what Stat Man says above — with the exception of the swipe at Kozlov.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
1:34 pm

RIP Tom Mees.

RIP journalism at ESPN

No one can argue that we are better off now than we were yesterday. But if Kovy doesn’t want to be here and truly lead his team, then all we can do is hope that Oduya returns to form, which I think he will, and Bergfors excels again playing Top 6 versus Top 9 minutes. No doubt his stats suffered when players returned from injury.

By the way, y’all are delusional if you think Oduya isn’t at least on par with Toby Enstrom. And Oduya is a hell of a lot more solid than Ron Hainsey. But I expect Hainsey to play better as well because we’ve got more blueline talent to spread and a certain forward won’t be turning the puck over at the other team’s blueline thus leading to as many odd-man rushes the other way. But having said that, if Bogo and Ron don’t start playing more aggressive all the time, it won’t matter.

Russ

February 5th, 2010
1:36 pm

During the annual “should DW be fired or not” debate a few years back, I suggested Dean Lombardi as a possible replacement. During that same offseason (I think 3 years ago) Lombardi was hired by the Kings and at that time they were about at the same point in the standings as the Thrashers. How are the Kings looking now compared to Atlanta? I believe they are currently fourth in a much tougher conference. And before anyone says ownership OK’d Lombardi to spend wildly don’t forget most people thought Kovy was going to the Kings because they were about the only contending team that would have cap room to sign him to an extension. I’m just sayin’…

Tincup9

February 5th, 2010
1:38 pm

Let me be clear – I hate this deal, but I found this comment on tsn.ca interesting

“When Boston traded Thorton people said it was one of the worst deals ever,but in the end it worked out better for the Bruins. They freed up a lot of salary and made way on the roster for new young talent.”

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
1:39 pm

The only way the Thrashers win tonight is if Kovy took Ovechkin & Semin out last night and got them hammered.

Pittsburgh Pirate Fan

February 5th, 2010
1:39 pm

Rice Owls-I guess TSN’s expectations are low too.

J.B.

February 5th, 2010
1:40 pm

Stroz. Oddly enough I was thinking last night about DW & Groundhog Day (the movie). It occurred to me that the last game kovy played in thrasher blue was played on Groundhog Day, Feb. 2nd. Fitting huh?

Riceowls8891

February 5th, 2010
1:42 pm

Low? or realistic? They have no dog in the fight.

Russ

February 5th, 2010
1:44 pm

I don’t think most people are saying DW did poorly in this trade (at least I know I’m not). When you are backed against the wall, you get what you can before the player leaves for nothing, knowing it probably isn’t going to amount to much. The point is that he misread the entire thing and should have made a trade a long time ago when he would have gotten much more and he is also the one who created the culture that no players want to stay here beyond their 1st contract.

Whitaker

February 5th, 2010
1:58 pm

TinCup9 -Yeah it wourked out mainly because of a former Thrasher, Savard. They trade Joe away and then that summer sign Savard (one can debate who is better Savard or Thornton), a playmaker that is almost as good if not as good for a steal.

I do not see a player that could replace Ilya coming here, without over paying him.

Don needs to go, and yet again we are rebuilding a team. Who do we build it around?

Pavs? Sorry I do not think he is the future he cannot play 60 minutes
or play consistently past 10 games.

Tobie or Bogo? Anderson’s system is all about offence, we are not
Boston, Minnesota, or New Jersey.

Kane/Little? Little is in a sophmore slump, Kane is having a good
year, but he is still finding his way.

Do we have one area that we can say is GREAT? My uneducated eyes says
no!

A bad goalie can be great with GREAT Defensemen, but currently we do not have that. We just lost our sniper one and really only Sniper (Max is gone after the season). We do not have a playmaker like Savard/Thornton.

Is it just best to Trade away any player that we can get a good return on and rebuild from scratch like it was 1999 again? I would hate it but that may be best, but to do so we need a new GM.

Which brings us back to what everyone here knows and most people out of the Atlanta area are saying Don Waddell need to be gone from Atlanta.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
1:58 pm

Here’s something for everyone to chew on from March 3, 2008:

Last week we traded Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Colby Armstrong, Erik Christensen, Angelo Esposito, and a 2008 first-round draft pick. While Don Waddell is being praised for the amount of talent we acquired in this deal, the decision to trade Marian was reached after exhausting all other possibilities and was one of the most difficult moves we have been forced to make in our three seasons of owning the Thrashers.

In light of Marian’s departure, we felt it was important to let you know how we view this team, and what our goals are for the future. We want to stress to you our commitment to winning and to bringing a Stanley Cup to Atlanta. We are excited about this franchise and the continued development of our top players this season. Among them, Ilya Kovalchuk is a highlight-reel scorer who has emerged as a passionate leader. Kari Lehtonen continues to gain the experience he needs to become one of the league’s elite netminders. Toby Enstrom has been a work horse and is a leading candidate for Rookie of the Year. We expect great things from these players along with the core group of players who are under contract for years to come.

Building on that foundation will be Colby Armstrong and Erik Christensen, two young and talented forwards who possess the size and skill that will help our club immediately. We were also able to add Angelo Esposito, a highly-touted 19-year old prospect who was a first-round pick of the Penguins in 2007. He will add to our current crop of up and coming amateur players like Riley Holzapfel, Spencer Machacek, Niklas Lucenius and Andrei Zubarev that will bolster our team for the future. In addition, we have players such as Bryan Little, Ondrej Pavelec, Brett Sterling and Boris Valabik, who are having significant success while leading the Chicago Wolves to the best record in the American Hockey League. We look forward to their future as Thrashers with great anticipation.

We also realize that we have areas we can improve upon and as we move our team forward we will aggressively pursue all means at our disposal to strengthen our club, including free agency and the Entry Draft. The first round pick we acquired from Pittsburgh will also be used to select a high-quality prospect or can be used as a chip to acquire immediate help. Our summer agenda will also include solidifying a head coach who will take us to the next level.

The climb to the top of the mountain is never straight up. In our first two seasons as owners our record improved, we won a division championship, and made our first playoff appearance. Our goal for this team has not wavered and we want to bring a championship to you, our loyal fans, and to this city. Like you, we are passionate Thrashers fans, and we spend every day working on trying to make this team one that we can all be proud of.

Thank you for your continuing support, and we look forward to achieving long-term success together.

Bruce Levenson

On behalf of the Atlanta Thrashers’ Owners

Did that make you lose your lunch?

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
1:59 pm

Stroz… Kovy had a great repoire with Waddell… I don’t know how he felt about ownership, but they ponied up $100 million, offered him 12 years, and got the players he asked for… what else could there be? Hmmm, I wonder?

I personally think Kovy wants to play in a more exciting environment… everything he said about being in Atlanta for life was lip service because he knows the market is fragile.

What I get tired of, is all this endless banter… Jesus H. Christ!

Look… I don’t need to cheer anybody else up. You all can come in here and bark and moan until you all die of ulcers…. I don’t need to do that.

Riceowls8891

February 5th, 2010
2:00 pm

“No players?” Except for Tobie, and Marty, and Slava, and X, and Peverly, and Moose.

Whitaker

February 5th, 2010
2:00 pm

If I was waddell, I would have hung on to Ilya till the end of the play-off run if we had one, talk again set a limit of 1 week, and then shopped the rights to talk to him before July 3rd… which has been done in the past with other players. I truely beleive we would have gotten a better return…

Mrs. Zoomo

February 5th, 2010
2:02 pm

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:05 pm

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:07 pm

I personally think Kovy wants to play in a more exciting environment… everything he said about being in Atlanta for life was lip service because he knows the market is fragile.

Personally, I think Kovy likes WAddell but thinks he’s an idiot and the owners aren’t commited to a winning franchise.

Otherwise, why would the ASG/Waddell wait till the last year of Kovy’s contract to improve the team?

Personnally, I think Kovy can tell if it walks like a duck and talks like aduck, will it’s a duck.

As you stated once before, the ASG/Waddell are like car salesmen, they wait until you’re walking out the door before they get serious.

five_hole

February 5th, 2010
2:08 pm

Geez; I leave town for a few weeks and come back to THIS?!?!?!? OMFG.

My thoughts:

1. I asked the wife if she wanted to get tickets for the bus trip next month. She said she didn’t want to spend any more money on the Thrashers. My guess is that her opinion will ripple across Blueland and Philips Arena will become even more deserted than it has been.

2. Oduya coming here means we’re not going to try and resign Kubina. We already had what was considered to be 4 top-4 defensemen. Would we resign Pavel (for what, another $4 mil) and have 5 top-4 defensemen?

3. This means a complete rebuilding of our team and I would start with the top & work my way down. I don’t completely fault DW; he signed the people Kovy wanted (Andropov & Afinigenov); he made what seems to be a completely reasonable $$$ offer. However, between this, Hossa, Heatley, his ability to not recognize talent if he isn’t picking in the 1st 10 picks of the draft . . . he’s just got to go. When JA first got here, I thought he seemed like a really good guy to coach the team. But apparently he can’t motivate these guys and so he has to go too.

4. We have to completely redesign our power play. Not that it was that great anyway, the last couple of months, but at least the rest of the league won’t be waiting on Enstrom or Andropov to pass it to Kovy.

5. Let the firesale begin! Up first we have a crystal statue of a goalie. Oh, wait; it’s Kari Lehtonen. You’ll forgive me for thinking he was made of crystal. Second we have Colby Armstrong. Plays hard, backchecks well, which is why he doesn’t fit in here. Tell you what; trade for a Thrasher and we’ll give you some fans chairs. Chances are really good no one’s going to be using them in the near future anyway.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:10 pm

This is the first time in my career I got a chance to play for a first-class organization,…

And that is why he left the Thrashers, the ASG/Waddell are a sorry organization.

Mrs. Zoomo

February 5th, 2010
2:14 pm

LOL five_hole, I think Kari is made of crystal too!!! We need to get rid of him.

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
2:15 pm

Saturday night “Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.”Lets Go Thrashers!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Fire Wad-Dell!” Clap, Clap, clapclapclap “Screw the Spirit” Clap,Clap, clapclapclap.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:15 pm

Stroz… I agree… but God, playing in Philips Arena has gotta feel like Purgatory this year for these guys… and they’re in a dog fight for the playoffs.

If the fans had come out this season like they promised to do last summer “if the organization showed an effort to make the product better”… who knows…

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:22 pm

Stroz… I agree… but God, playing in Philips Arena has gotta feel like Purgatory this year for these guys… and they’re in a dog fight for the playoffs.

GaVaHokie – Agreed, but had Waddell stepped down, many fans would have re-upped before the season started. I’ve only missed four games this season. And the game with the best “real” attendence was the 8-1 buttkicking by the Capitals.

Waddell must go. However, the loss of Kovy will turn off the average fan who doesn’t know the team is run by a pack of fools trying to fit in a VW bug.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:23 pm

J.B. – That is pure karma.

Bob

February 5th, 2010
2:23 pm

“Go back to grunts and groans”

Hokie, that made me LOL

Stroz, Waddell IS groundhog day

“I don’t think most people are saying DW did poorly in this trade (at least I know I’m not). When you are backed against the wall, you get what you can before the player leaves for nothing, knowing it probably isn’t going to amount to much. The point is that he misread the entire thing and should have made a trade a long time ago when he would have gotten much more and he is also the one who created the culture that no players want to stay here beyond their 1st contract.”

Bingo. Spot on, Russ. This is the point. It’s useless to analyze this trade now, we’ll have to see how it plays out, the point is that we never should have been in this situation to begin with. Either Kovy should have been impressed enough with this “1st class organ-I-zation” (lol) and re-signed here long ago, and if not, Waddell should have moved him last summer when it was apparent he wasn’t going to re-sign, so he didn’t have to settle for the scraps we got yesterday.

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
2:35 pm

Dip-Wad and No Spirit: Making the Thrashers look more and more like the State of Alabama with each passing day, and remember that the birds fly upside down over Alabama because there is nothing worth Sh**ting on in Alabama.

Nikita

February 5th, 2010
2:35 pm

“2. Oduya coming here means we’re not going to try and resign Kubina. We already had what was considered to be 4 top-4 defensemen. Would we resign Pavel (for what, another $4 mil) and have 5 top-4 defensemen?”

Well, arguably we don’t have four top-4 defensemen now.

TableHockey

February 5th, 2010
2:35 pm

Hopefully the cameras in NJ won’t catch Kovys face when he looks up and sees the score out of Washington. That would be painful to see.

I’m wondering if the snow in DC (I’m hearing 2 feet or more) will ground flights? Wouldn’t be pretty if the team can’t fly out until tomorrow.

I’ll be there tomorrow night cheering for the ‘New-look Thrasher’s’ and for Waddells departure. Anyone else going to be there?

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
2:36 pm

Oh, and its hard to say Dip-Wad did poorly in this trade. Anything looks up when you have hit ROCK BOTTOM.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:37 pm

Looks like Kovalchuk gets to start his NJ debut with a hat trick tonight… Gustavsson is starting for Toronto.

http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Hockey/NHL/NewJersey/2010/02/05/12758986-qmi.html

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
2:40 pm

“This is the first time in my career I got a chance to play for a first-class organization,…”

Well… he’s right..

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:40 pm

And seriously… in the age of cell phones… how long does it take to get a quote from Oduya and Bergfors?

ChippersLoveChild

February 5th, 2010
2:41 pm

“2. Oduya coming here means we’re not going to try and resign Kubina. We already had what was considered to be 4 top-4 defensemen. Would we resign Pavel (for what, another $4 mil) and have 5 top-4 defensemen”

I think it not only means we won’t re-sign him, not like he would want to anyway, but I think it means we will be trading him by the deadline.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:42 pm

I wonder if Waddell flew up to NJ to pick up Oduya and Bergfors? *snicker*

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:42 pm

And seriously… in the age of cell phones… how long does it take to get a quote from Oduya and Bergfors?

They’re still holding their heads over the tiolet.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:43 pm

We’ll trade Kubina if the price is right, but I think we’ll keep him for the whole year… he didn’t really cost us anything.

Seeing the return for a UFA Kovalchuk, what would you expect for a UFA Kubina?… not much.

frenchy

February 5th, 2010
2:44 pm

Maybe DW got the best he could get for Kovy…we will never know. Nevertheless, he put himself in that situation with a number of our best players over the years. He failed to learn from his mistakes and we have yet to win a single game in the playoffs, let alone getting IN the playoffs.

If it wasn’t evident before, we are now THE team that players don’t want to play for; We are the joke in the NHL and the possibility to attract decent UFAs this summer is… (can’t think of a word dark enough)… This is why the only way this fan will ever set foot in Philips Arena again is if Don Waddell is FIRED IMMEDIATELY.

He had 10 years and he has NOTHING to show for it… Time to move on.

FIRE WADDELL NOW!!!!!

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:44 pm

They’re still holding their heads over the tiolet.

Talking them off the ledge? :)

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:45 pm

Rawhide, I triple dog dare you to put up the following fan poll:

The Atlanta Thrashers are more like:

a) the Pittsburgh Pirates

b) the Los Angeles Clippers

c) the Detroit Lions

d) the Atlanta Falcons when owned by the Smith family

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
2:46 pm

I’d fire Waddell just so I don’t have to hear FIRE WADDELL anymore.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
2:48 pm

Viv does a good job for the most part, but he’s as slow as some of the concession workers in the upper level of Philips.

Who’s to say Hainsey is a better option at this point than Kubina just because he’s younger. I’d rather re-up Kubie for 3 years at $4 – 4.5 M and try to ship Hainsey to someone really in need of puck movers. They are out there, we just need to find them and offer a prospect or pick on top of Hainsey. Trade need for need. We need another veteran physical D-man in case Kulda isn’t ready. But beyond that, all the other UFA’s (including Slater) are fair game for being traded. We need to flip Finny, Army (unless he says he will stay for the same $…doubtful), Kozzie (if he will waive the NTC) and Moose for picks and prospects. Those picks and prospects can then be used to help Chicago climb out of the depths of salary cap hell. Welcome to Atlanta Patrick Sharp and Kris Vesteeg!!

NYC Thrashers Fan

February 5th, 2010
2:48 pm

Can we not make a run for him this summer with the same contract if he does in fact enter free agency? How many teams are going to offer a much better contract than what we did? Even if they are comparable, if he says he wants to stay in Atlanta, maybe he’ll come back?

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
2:49 pm

GaVaHokie- I’ve been out all afternoon, or I’d have been helping you out earlier. Your comparison was to give people perspective on what NJ gave up for a rental, and its a fair assessment.

The pirate formerly known as Miami Screaming Eagle- I’m with you on the name change. I’ve officially dropped KovyRules for a reference to my favorite old coach. I should have dropped the name in November when the fire went out of Kovy.

And to everyone else, I’ll have my 14 year old daughter at the game Saturday, so please keep it clean (yes, I mean you, Section 222!). “Fire DW” works. “ASG sucks” definitely works.

John

February 5th, 2010
2:51 pm

This one is gonna go down easier with a couple of those Mudslide shakes (chocolate and 151) at the Broadway Brewhouse here at my domicile in Nastyville, TN.

I reeeaallly hope this one works out. And it has the potential to. While I have been a staunch critic of Waddell in the past, if this one works out, good for him. Let’s take a look at his situations:

Heatley: We don’t need to go there.

Hossa: You can’t say “he let Heatley AND Hossa go.” One doesn’t exist here. Heatley killed a guy and used it as an excuse to get the heck out of here. Waddell got a solid deal for him. Hossa was pissed cause Ottawa screwed him over, signing him to a 6 year, trillion dollar deal, giving him a sense of stability, then sending him to the land of Coca-Cola. Hossa never wanted to be here, vanished during the playoffs, and got out when he could. I don’t think anyone expected anything different. And if you remember, out of the Pittsburgh camp that year, everyone was thinking THEY got hosed and gave up too much. The prospect didn’t work out, sometimes they do sometimes they don’t. Erik Christensen is now Eric O’Dell i believe, and who knows what his status is. So what if Daulton Leville is still in college…good for him…Kessel coulda used a few more years at the U IMHO.

Savard: He wanted more money than we could afford. Went to Boston and earned it. Good for him. At that point we still had a ton of contracts on the table we needed to deal with and something had to go.

Zhitnik: OK, this one sucked, but look at it this way: Waddell got Zhitnik to win THEN, not a few years from then (aka now). He mortgaged the future, much like the Devils did with this trade. I think we look at that trade a little different if we win that playoff series. And that was a weird playoff series…that weird Sean Avery goal, Hossa going all fugitive on us, Kovy deciding it was a sweet idea to fight Avery, and Lehtonen becoming a sieve. You gotta remember, the playoffs are tough in this league. There’s so much parity it’s not even funny. I think that was the 7th year for the franchise…remember, the year before, the Rangers got swept in the playoffs after a 7 year absence. Our lack of history makes our lack of success that much uglier, but it’s not uncommon, espescially for historic franchises.

So am I happy to see Kovy go? Of course not. I think deep down in our hearts we all wanted to believe that Kovy was serious about wanting to stay in Atlanta. The Thrashers get flamed (no pun intended) in the media so much and hearing support from one of the top players in the league felt good. But giving him what he wanted…hell giving him what we offered him…would have been crippling down the road. Waddell’s last few drafts look pretty good. One thing we gotta give him credit for is getting gritty guys that stick around…Peverly, Slater (not a first rounder probably but oh well), Hedberg…look at Nashville. They don’t have a “star” per se, but they’re right there in the hunt. And we just lost 2 one goal games that, had we won, we’d be in the playoff standings. The closest Kovy got was smashing his composite over the pipe. Whoops.

I’m bummed, but positive. I still think Waddell has had wayyyyyy too much time, and he shouldn’t be “figuring out the GM thing,” which it feels like what he’s been doing for the last 10 years, on the fans’ dollar. But this could be good folks, this could be OK.

Or it could suck.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
2:53 pm

Badger Bob – I exercise free speech, not vulgarity. That stated, you may want to stay out of the 300’s though. They are a little less tame but have the same degree of passion.

TableHockey

February 5th, 2010
2:54 pm

NYC Thrashers Fan – sure it’s a possibility to make the same offer but I suspect that bridge was burned by DW with his presser yesterday. I suspect Kovy will either end up in LA or in the KHL.

Buzilla in CT

February 5th, 2010
2:56 pm

If you hired (insert your own personal favorite person as GM of the Thrashers for the last ten years) and give them the same budget and same set of instructions from cheap @ss management, do you all think the results would have been that much better? Really?

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
3:00 pm

Question, does Rutherford Seydel have the ‘nads to be there on the glass on Saturday night? A committed owner would, as a show of support for the new players. But I doubt he has the stomache for the catcalls.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
3:02 pm

Buzilla in CT – David Poile, Yes

If Harvey Schiller had hired Brian Burke…well he’d kick the owners @ss and sell tickets to raise money if they tried this cheap crap.

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
3:02 pm

FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!

sisu

February 5th, 2010
3:02 pm

just got this email :)

ATLANTA THRASHERS TOWN HALL MEETING
Saturday, February 6th

We anticipate this being a highly attended Season Ticket Holder event, and for that reason, we ask that you bring your Season Ticket Holder credential to gain admittance to the event. Only credentialed guests will be allowed into this event.

ATL Native hockey fan

February 5th, 2010
3:06 pm

Sisu Be sure to voice displeasure about how the team is managed not just the Kovalchuk trade but the general displeasure on how the team and the fans have been run into the ground.

TableHockey

February 5th, 2010
3:08 pm

Sweet Sisu – can’t wait to hear the report from that one.

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
3:12 pm

rice owls is an idiot…

Slava and Marty? LMAO

FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!

TableHockey

February 5th, 2010
3:12 pm

Now that I think about it Sisu – would be great if someone asks: “the Thrasher’s have existed for 10 seasons and have one playoff appearance and no playoff wins. The effect on the dwindling fan base is obvious. What do YOU plan to do to change the course of this team moving forward? What do YOU plan to do to renew fan faith in this franchise?”

Tom

February 5th, 2010
3:13 pm

So if Oduya refuses to report, is the trade cancelled?

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
3:14 pm

Check out theAirTran billboard visible from connector southboard at Edgewood, featuring Kovy taking a slapshot. The caption: “See Your Breath In Other Arenas”. Hey, how did they know…

Lee

February 5th, 2010
3:14 pm

The good part of this, is that no one is relying on Kovalchuk any more, because when Kovy was on the team, none of the other players tried.

Tom

February 5th, 2010
3:15 pm

Get the feeling Andropov is saying WTF right now? My buddy, Ilya, said come on down and he would re-sign and we could play together for a few years. Now he walked away from a 100 million dollar deal and I am left behind?

five_hole

February 5th, 2010
3:16 pm

They’re still holding their heads over the tiolet. R. Stroz You still got it, brother.

DWTOO

February 5th, 2010
3:16 pm

John – Stopped at the Broadway last saturday night after the game and didn’t notice the mudslide shake. DARN. Probably a good thing since already more than I needed. Mental note to self – nest time remember.

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
3:16 pm

…southbound… despte the name change, I still can’t type

Tom

February 5th, 2010
3:16 pm

LOL,

I am wondering if the Season Ticket holder meeting is just to get season ticket holders to attend the game.

Or to forestall a riot…

Spud Webb

February 5th, 2010
3:20 pm

Is anyone else walking funny today after that &ss raping we just took???
WTF did we add Salmela to the deal??? Oduya and he are THE SAME PLAYER…difference is Jersey DEVELOPS players, we make them regress. WTF did we swap 2nd round picks???? What is WRONG WITH DW?????????????????????? J&SUS…DW is talking out of both sides yet again. Paraphrase, kovys been here for a long time and we havent won a playoff series. NO SH&T don, did you just figure that out in the last two weeks???????? WHY didnt don know that the max contract wasnt going to keep him here LAST YEAR?????????????? Can you imagine the take if we had sent him to a team that he wanted to sign with in the offseason last??????????? Un freaking believable. Don’s back to playing tittlewinks today, DW PAY ATTENTION. If you really wanted players that can help us in the playoffs this year, their was a STUD D MAN traded last week, yet we missed out on that??? HOW & WHY?? ACCOUNTABLILITY?? ANYONE?????
We took a talented yet troubled minor leaguer off their hands?? WHY, did anyone tell Don that WE had a top 5 player??? good lord, Im sick…and a 2nd or 3rd line winger, wow, genius don. You’ve made us sooooooooooooooooooo proud. I too am having the FIRE DW shirts made this weekend.
Now Kovy, ahhahhaaha, Kovy, Kovy, Kovy, went to the DW school of talking. “i want to stay in atl”, blah, blah, blah….LIAR, you turned down the chance to be the highest paid player…despite the fact that you cant hold Cindy or Ovys JOCKS…April 6th, I can promise I will be behind the jersey bench and booooooooooooooooooooing him the WHOLE Game. He’s a bigger sellout than Hoss, I Said it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Finally, please, please, please asg sell this team. DO SOMETHING. YOu’re killing all of us. This is a sad, sad day. Once again, the atl is the joke of the league. WBF says it best, 3 of the top goal scorers since 01 have been thrashers, can someone show me what we have for that??????????? Nevermind, I know, NOTHING.
If DW had any nuts, he’d step down, be a man don, you cannot get the job done. Someone save us please!!!!!!!!!!!

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
3:26 pm

So if Oduya refuses to report, is the trade cancelled?

I’m affraid not… Chad Kilger did that a few years ago and he was suspended without pay… the trade still happened.

http://ballhype.com/story/chad_kilger_supended_by_team/

Kovyoverrated

February 5th, 2010
3:27 pm

Wahooooo! No more brain farts on breakaways! No more asking yourself after a power play turnover “THAT is the best player on our team?” Now let’s look at the real problem here. Will somebody please call Arthur Blank and make a sales call! We need an ownership enema.

GaVaHokie

February 5th, 2010
3:28 pm

Every time I heard Thrashers Town Hall Meeting, I think of this…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLni3wbndls&feature=related

Tom

February 5th, 2010
3:28 pm

GaVaHokie – great find. Of course, it did not help my day any, but great find none the less.

Pittsburgh Pirate Fan

February 5th, 2010
3:30 pm

Badger Bob-nice move, you picked a fine man to transition your namesake to. I am just hoping we don’t get our asses kicked tonight.

lilibeter

February 5th, 2010
3:32 pm

I wonder what would have happened if DW had called (what I believe was) Kovy’s bluff and offered him the $11.3 million for 10 or 12 years.

Not that DW would ever have had the cajones to make that gamble, but at least we’d know for certain that it was never a money or greed thing – it was a management/owner thing.

DWTOO

February 5th, 2010
3:32 pm

Good News – It’s snowing in DC and airlines are cancelling flights for tonight and tomorrow. Maybe they’ll get snowed in and we can avoid the embarassment of having to absorb back to back poundings.

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
3:37 pm

Pirate – thanks. And with respect to tonight, we lost 8-1 last time we played them. In Atlanta. With Kovy. They are coming off a three game road trip with their soon-to-be NHL record win streak intact. U G L Y. I have no expectations but to see how the individual players react – guys like Max and Antro.

R. Stroz

February 5th, 2010
3:48 pm

Could someone send Waddell on a canoeing trip in North Georgia since he seems to be into that kind of stuff.

Viking

February 5th, 2010
3:49 pm

I think this whole thing after some time is going to work out…

And I am very happy one player is not paid 10 – 12 million, while reducing the ability to spend good money on other team members – for a decade or so!

One thing worries me though;

I watched videos showing that ugly elbow Cormier delivered causing him to be shut out for the rest of the season. Someone suggested earlier that he should not be judged because of that one incident and something about that it is good we got some grit. Maybe I could have agreed if I had not seen another video showing exactly the same elbow move toward another unsuspecting opponent. This time during the Junior Championships. I hope that Cormier guy is biding his time during his suspension changing his view on what belongs in hockey. Otherwise he will seriously injure someone (even worse than previously). But if he tries any of this coward ugliness in the NHL, experienced NHL goons will gladly “adjust” him (with me cheering them on).

Eileen

February 5th, 2010
3:49 pm

R. Stroz, he couldn’t do that. They were beating the Rangers in the 3rd period. We have our work cut out for us tonight. Hopefully our players are not hung over from the “emotional” farewell Kovy dinner.

ben

February 5th, 2010
3:59 pm

This is a new chapter in the team’s history. This team will get better. There is money that there wasn’t before, Kovy’s departure saw to that. This team will be sold. Maybe the new owners can put the team in the northern suburbs, say north Fulton. If the NHL wants a team here it could help to finance the building. There is a way out of this. I miss 17 too, but his +/- was bad. Defense wins, winning not Kovy will bring the people.

Buzilla in CT

February 5th, 2010
4:00 pm

“I am very excited,” he said after taking part in the pregame skate for Friday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. “**This is the first time in my career I got a chance to play for a first-class organization**, the team who won three Stanley Cups. You just look around the locker room, and guys like Martin Brodeur, legends in this game, and it’s very exciting.”

ouch…

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
4:04 pm

Burnside actually has something nice to say. Even if it is wrapped in some subtle snark.

Russ

February 5th, 2010
4:10 pm

I would like to get people’s opinions on the following:

Will the Thrashers win a playoff game while the franchise is still in Atlanta? a playoff series?

I’ll say a game, yes…a series, no.

Tommy

February 5th, 2010
4:12 pm

The ‘Waddell had no choice and did the best he could’ argument is pure bull.

Had he drafted well, built a farm system that could develop players, made some astute free agent pickups and trades, Kovalchuck never would have wanted to leave.

This disaster started years ago. Waddell is a complete disaster. If Atlanta ends up losing its NHL team, the blame can be laid squarely on his shoulders.

Lots of teams make it with less money and crappy ownership. Look at the Marlins and Twins, for example.

This team lost me when they canned Bob Hartley. My wife and I used to go to 5-8 games a year. I haven’t been back since late 2007.

What a mess.

StateBird

February 5th, 2010
4:19 pm

Trying hard to find something positive … but I hope that Oduya and Enstrom can play together at the Olympics and come back with some chemistry.

Trash

February 5th, 2010
4:21 pm

Good on ya’ R.Stroz! And, thanks for posting the Dontalk after the Hossa trade. Smooth talking Don, no wonder he is still the manager after the history of results he has procured and promised this team. And, how anyone can even, in the slightest, be satisfied with this trade is really beyond me. Oh, but wait. . . yeah I forgot, let’s build for the future, let’s build a Philips house of cards……and this is the best we can do ?? Apparently it is.

East Point Bob

February 5th, 2010
4:30 pm

Rumor going around the team will be in Kansas City next season.

This from KMBZ 980 in KC, friend heard it this am, citing deal all but done. Just wish someone could do something to keep the team here under new owner/ship, not owners, and we must have Don Waddell terminated at all costs. If moved he will surely get axed, but is that what it takes ?

timthebrave

February 5th, 2010
4:31 pm

I will be at the game saturday as long as the Thrashers can make it out of DC……I will be cheering as loud as ever because I root for the name on the fron and not the name on the back and I love live hockey…That being said screw don waddell and the spirit group…Do Ted Turner or Arthur Blank like hockey? Go Thrashers

Gatorwsc

February 5th, 2010
4:45 pm

It is a sad, sad day in the Atlanta hockey circuit. With decisions like trading Ilya, it is no wonder the team can not make it to the playoffs. If the organization is so worried about money, then why are the continuing to trade away players that bring the fans in. I know several people that are boycotting the games until something is done with Waddell. So my question in the end is this: Do the owners really want an NHL hockey team in Atlanta? If so then WADDELL needs to GO!!

Nikita

February 5th, 2010
4:47 pm

Cormier is a serial offender. I don’t want him on our team.

*Had he drafted well, built a farm system that could develop players, made some astute free agent pickups and trades, Kovalchuck never would have wanted to leave.*

Gotta argue here. The farm system worked and works fine.

*This team lost me when they canned Bob Hartley. My wife and I used to go to 5-8 games a year. I haven’t been back since late 2007.*

…but canning Hartley was the thing to do. Hartley’s major shortcoming was his inability to develop young players.

Hockey Biltong

February 5th, 2010
4:49 pm

John, great comment…
Bill – the morning after? Is this like “coyote ugly?”
where you chew off your arm so you don’t wake up the person next to you in bed??????

LAC

February 5th, 2010
4:50 pm

Well if THIS cannot tell a TALE, I don’t know what does !!!

Quote from IK today in NJ… Says IT ALL !

“I am very excited,” he said after taking part in the pregame skate for Friday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs. “This is the first time in my career I got a chance to play for a first-class organization, the team who won three Stanley Cups. You just look around the locker room, and guys like Martin Brodeur, legends in this game, and it’s very exciting.

Wow, I agree NJ, formerly The Kansas City Scouts, have come a LONG way since their awful days at The Kemper Arena. They ARE a class team top to bottom, with a REAL GM who KNOWS what he is doing.

Like we all have said, Atlanta SUCK Group, does exactly that SUCK !
Where is Mr.Pottymouth hiding, or that LIAR rutherford Stupidnydle,
or BugEyed michael geron what a little petty wimp A$$ he is and finally that drunk punk beau turner ? Where are they and the others HIDING like little panty wastes they are, just a sick joke they have control of the team, just NUTS, and they are THE LOWEST CLASS of human SCUM you can get ! So come ou from hiding asg and FACE THE FANS and tell us ALL you are trying to win, BS BS BS ! I hope ALL of you burn in HELL when you die and let’s all hope it’s sooner rather than later.

Lasty stuipd waddell, hey “don” please skid off the road tonight and hit a telephone pole and not be discovered for a day or so, THEN we will be rid of you once and for all, and there are LOTS of nice BIG telephone poles to run your car into, I will laugh for weeks if that ever happened !

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
4:50 pm

Rumor going around the team will be in Kansas City next season.

Doubtful.

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
4:54 pm

Cormier is a serial offender. I don’t want him on our team.

Teach the kid to keep his elbow down, and we’ll all be fine. This team lacks grit, and we need some sandpaper on this team.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
4:55 pm

Let me just say how much I appreciate our blogmaster, Rawhide. This was yet another outstanding blog and topic.

I am concerned … that no one in the major newsprint media … has yet, to my knowledge, offered up this sentiment. “How does a player, like Savard, Hossa, or Kovalchuk, tell the negotiating GM … that he won’t re-sign until said GM is fired, in order to move the franchise ‘in the right direction.’” And see … that’s the CRUX of the issue. To me, Kovalchuk stating that he has NO PLANS to EVER MOVE his family from Atlanta, and that he plans to live here YEAR ROUND … SCREAMS something obvious.

Anyone not yet figure it out? Here it is, in plain English: “Even though there’s an NHL team in the city where I live, I have ZERO faith in them to ever win a Stanley Cup. Therefore, I will play elsewhere.”

How does the ownership … KEEP MISSING this???????? They keep sending a failing GM to try to keep a player in the fold. When the player is awkwardly squirming, “Fire Waddell and I will re-sign. Don’t send the dufous to negotiate with me. Send him to the unemployment line.” Man, they just DON’T GET IT. And it’s painful to leave with the aftermath and consequences of that failure to find the SOURCE of the problem.

Bob

February 5th, 2010
5:07 pm

You know what? It’s Friday, it’s beer thirty, and it stopped raining. It’s only hockey, let’s all tip a few (I’ll be sipping me Jamesons all night) to that rascal Kovy who got away from under the Waddell/Octocluster and let’s see how these hockey players left behind react tonight. This game will be very telling, methinks

Badger Bob

February 5th, 2010
5:14 pm

“Rumor going around the team will be in Kansas City next season”

Rumor going around for years that we’ll be in Hamilton/Quebec City/Winnipeg/Las Vegas/KC… what else is new. If Bettmann goes to the mat for PHX, he’ll jump in front of buses to keep Thrashers here. Changing cities changes nothing (there are badly run teams in Canada, too, you know). What we MUST have is change in ownership. That’s the only potential way to get credibility with players thinking of coming or staying here.

Go Devils

February 5th, 2010
5:16 pm

Well Would the Thrashers have traded Kovy if we were second in the playoff race?

FlamesFan

February 5th, 2010
5:23 pm

After losing the Flames, I waited 20 years for the NHL to return. It looks like deja vu all over again.
But if by some miracle we do keep our team, I foresee the following AJC headlines in the future:
FEB 28, 2017: THRASHERS TRADE UFA BOGOSIAN FOR #5 DEFENSEMAN AND ONE-ARMED PROSPECT. WADELL CALLS IT A GOOD MOVE.
FEB 17, 2018: THRAHSER TRADE UFA EVANDER KANE FOR 3RD LINE WINGER AND SPARE ZAMBONI WHEEL. WADELL LOOKING FORWARD TO FUTURE.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
5:26 pm

So far, Bob’s 11:42AM post is my favorite. http://blogs.ajc.com/iceman-thrashers-blog/2010/02/05/the-morning-after-in-thrasherville/comment-page-1/#comment-19879.

I still say, if the team were 60-20-2, playing before 11,000 fans every night, Kovy would have stayed. It’s about winning. Not holding out for money. In fact, he’ll settle, like George Costanza, for LESS money. He’s not going to get $101 million. He might still pull off $70 million over 10-years. That’s possible.

But remember something, here, folks. Ilya’s already made $37 million playing hockey in the NHL. He doesn’t need to make another dollar in his life. He’s already set for eternity. No, Ilya’s next contract is 100% based on who is the most likely to win a Cup over the duration of the contract he signs. He won’t sign in Phoenix. He won’t sign in Columbus. He won’t even sign in Vancouver or Calgary or Edmonton, or Montreal. I don’t think he’d go with Toronto, but I could be wrong on that one. He’s going to pick a team whose ownership is committed to win the silver chalice. And that means … an organization that demands “accountability” over the performance and selection of the GM. Ya know, the person principally charged with oversight, not UNDERsight of the franchise.

Let me ask you something. And beeeeeeee honest. Do you think that Don Waddell … is out there … feeling sorry for himself, right about now? He should be. He might NOT be. But he should be. Here’s your vote of “confidence.” Savard left. Hossa left. Kaberle left. Kovalchuk said, “adios.” But ya know who’ll STAYYYYYY?

In fact, you’ll have to CHASE HIM OUT THE DOOR … Slava Kozlov. Slava Kozlov and Don Waddell are like two peas in a pod. They’re cut of the same cloth. “I don’t care what happens, so long as I get paid. I like it here, in my anonymity … my nice weather … my low taxes … and my “accountability-free” job!! Makes me SICK.

Before the Kovalchuk trade, there were players sweating it out … that they’d be moved to Atlanta for Ilya. And now, there’s even more of them. For Kubina is next. Then Colby. Then Moose or Kari. And on and on. Guys in other markets are smelling the reality … that they’ll be moved to Atlanta now. And they are trembling with dread.

Red Light

February 5th, 2010
5:35 pm

Your posts are always so charismatic Brendan, that I dread posting after you.

I think several more deals are coming, but the extra No. 1 from the Devils is likely to help land the Thrashers someone like Poni or even better.

Thrashers lose in the shootout tonight!

Bob

February 5th, 2010
5:36 pm

Brendan, let me re-post it then and fix my typos:

If some of you guys think Kovy left over money, you need to stop sniffing Waddell’s jock, step back, and take a whiff of reality.

He left because of Waddell and this horrible ownership. He left and he’ll wind up taking about the same money, or less money, from someone else who has a GM and ownership team that can put together a winner.

Why would Kovy want to tie himself to play here under Waddell and know he has no hopes of a Cup for the rest of his career? Kovy even just said he’ll keep his home here and this will be his 2nd home. It’s not about money, folks. It’s about Waddell and the Spirit. Same with Hossa, same with Heatley.

The day they fire Waddell and bring a real GM in here is the day that many of us former season ticket holders will return. The day they bring a real GM in is the day we have hope again. The day they bring a real GM in is when the players will want to stay here and compete and win.

Wake me up when that day comes.

Until then, the best thing you can do is stop subsidizing the incompetence of Don Waddell and stop making excuses for him. Those fans who naively have made excuses for him from the early years on are just as culpable in this mess as Waddell is. Why? Because you enabled him and you enabled the owners to be able to retain his incompetent rear through your support.

Stat Man

February 5th, 2010
5:39 pm

Record with Kovy this year: 21-20
Record with Kovy injured: 3-3

As the old saying goes “we coulda finished last with you or without you”

Get over it folks – he turned down $100+ million. We need a TEAM, not a single puck-hog grabbing 1/5 of the team’s salary cap!

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
5:42 pm

WBF, isn’t this Kovalchuk situation … EXACTLY like what happened in Toronto when Lanny MacDonald left the Leafs? In Tronna, it was like a death in the family. But worse yet, in their ANGER over his departure, they strangely understood. I don’t know if this analogy is entirely apt, but it’s like … dating someone BETTER than you. Where … you sadly and dejectedly come to the realization that … you are holding the other person BACK from achieving and BECOMING all that they otherwise would. That you’ll never be the ‘trophy wife’ that the Head of the Company should have. That you’ll never be the husband that the “belle of the ball” ought to land. Toronto fans knew … Lanny MacDonald HAD TO LEAVE to get a Cup ring. And, I think, they were happy for him that it happened.

Will I be happy for Kovalchuk, if he lands a Cup ring? Without hestitation, “Yes.” Why not? He served his time in H#LL. Eight seasons’ worth. Kovalchuk did not fail the Thrashers. The Thrashers failed him. And there it is. With no sugarcoating. Can we really blame Zach Bogosian and Evander Kane for leaving, when it comes their turn? Heck no. They’re professionals. They strive to succeed. They realize … that it’s hopeless in this environment. There needs to be a new business model. And there needs to be a new GM. And talking about rearranging lines, or ‘player acquisition’ strategy … is utterly futile and pointless under this regime. It’s just rearranging deck chairs. Even if you pluck something GOOD from the trade deadline, it will leave. Unless, segue ….

Unless it’s draft picks. Like Boston’s, via Toronto. That’s what I had hoped Kovalchuk’s trade would get. I wanted the trade with Boston, for BOTH their 1st round picks (3rd overall and 18th overall). Or whatever they wind up being. That’s what I wanted. I like Johnny Oduya. I do. I can’t lie and say I don’t. But, and beeee honest, would you have ever said, “I want Johnny Oduya SO BADLY … that I’m willing to give up Kovalchuk to get him.” See, ‘cuz I don’t. Bygones.

bartdunwoody

February 5th, 2010
5:47 pm

Brendan – You are correct. It all starts and ends with the Octocluster. The most dysfunctional owners in all of the NHL and probably all of major league sports continues to employ Don. Why?
Ownership is driving away fans and players with their lack of commitment to any kind of quality product.
If the people who participate in these blogs, agents and players can figure this out why can’t the Octocluster.
Bettman must have steam coming out of his ears when thinks about what the Octocluster is doing to the NHL in Atl.
It’s not the fans who are killing hockey in Atl its the Octocluster.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
5:54 pm

Stat Man, I’m not upset about the money. Or that Kovalchuk left. Hear me out. I’m UPSET that the franchise environment CAUSED Kovalchuk, Savard, Hossa, and Kaberle to leave. Obviously, paying 20% to one player reflects a GROSS and very serious payroll imbalance, that isn’t healthy for ANY team. I get it! I do!! I don’t need it explained to me. What I want people to realize … is that players, when it’s THEIR choice, will opt to leave precisely BECAUSE THE FRANCHISE IS MISMANAGED. That’s the whole frekkin’ point.

And ownership … STILLLLLLLL … doesn’t get it. Unbelieveable.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
5:57 pm

Bob, it reads even better this time around.

Russ, after your posts, there is very little left to add, as well. You do a great job. Especially in your research.

R.Stroz leaves me in hysterics. I particularly liked the line about the players still having their heads draped over the toilet. As in, “Hold my hair, while I puke.” And don’t think, for a second, that there aren’t players having nightmares in the middle of the night, in a cold sweat, that they’re NEXT to come to Atlanta.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
6:03 pm

I beg your STH’s going to the Town Hall meeting to ask Bruce Levenson, Michael Gearon, Ed Pescowitz, and whoever else shows up … why they think marquee players keep opting to leave Atlanta. On second thought, that question is posed incorrectly. Here’s how it should read. “Ask when a marquee player on the Thrashers will decide the organization is being run well enough to stay.” Then jump in, “I mean, not an RFA, who CANNOT leave, because the CBA traps them here.”

I’d love to watch them squirm with that one. I’d love to see this question asked. “Bruce, don’t you think that 9 Top Ten overall picks, including six (6) lottery draft selections, would have netted you a berth in the Conference Finals by now?” Follow up question, “Shouldn’t it have at least resulted in winning a playoff series?” Follow up question, “Shouldn’t it have at least resulted in one (1) playoff win?” Follow up question, “Well then, why haven’t you fired Don Waddell. Waddell once said, “I don’t much care for the ‘name calling,’ but I’ll answer for wins and losses.” Well, there you have it, Bruce. Don Waddell is ready to ANSWER for wins and losses. When are you going to fire him?

Smitty

February 5th, 2010
6:09 pm

Yeah, we got fleeced but why cry about it. Kovy abandonded ship back in Novemeber and his situation became the major distraction we all thought it would become. Time to move on.

I agree with what Burnside wrote concerning how much this team now has to prove. Hopefully they will not tank it as their former captain did. They can now show how much character they have and they can prove to everyone that this was not a one man team. They can prove that they are for real NHLers. They can prove through hard work and effort that they belong in this league and that they are worthy of our support.

Or they can mail it in and remind us of the lousy judge of talent that our GM brings to the table. I think Dudley made a good call on Cormier. Yes he exercised very poor judgement at the World Jrs and at his last game. He is paying a severe penalty for those indiscretions and hopefully he will learn from it. But this guy has an edge along with some size to go with it. Other than the elbows he could be another Dudley.

Maybe this is the start of something new. Building through the draft with someone who can really evaluate future NHL talent. I hope they give us something to cheer about on Saturday night with a real effort tonight against the Caps.

j

February 5th, 2010
6:18 pm

I think i’ve lost all respect for the peole blaming the ASG for Heatley leaving … how would you feel if you were the person responsible for killing a teammate and had to go games/practice and seeing that empty locker. You’d want to be traded as well … duh you bitter numbnuts!!!

Not Blind

February 5th, 2010
6:56 pm

:thumbsup: Hey!!! My email got read on Powerplay !!! Here is what I sent them:

Guys,
Everybody talks about how great a player Ilya Kovalchuk is and there is no doubt that he is an amazing sniper BUT the guy plays no defense to speak of. He is MINUS 80 for his career. When he has been on the ice it’s almost like a powerplay for the other team as long as they keep posession of the puck.

Since the anouncement of the Russian Olympic team he has really been playing soft hockey. You guys that don’t watch an entire Thrasher’s game, you only see his amazing goals. You guys don’t see him doing figure 8’s at his own blueline.

I for one am ready to see how the Thrashers do in the new era.

Thanks
Ray from Atlanta

Not Blind

February 5th, 2010
7:01 pm

After they read my email the guest [ can't remember his name ] said that one game his team had against the Thrashers where the Thrashers were on the powerplay and IK was playing the point. The puck skipped past IK’s stick about 15 feet into the neutral zone and this guy hauled a$$ for the puck and had a breakaway and scored. He said that IK didn’t even make an effort to keep him from scoring.

It was pretty cool to have an ex-nhl player that played against IK agree with my thoughts on IK.

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
7:05 pm

FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!
FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!! FIRE WADDELL!!!

NASCAR Dave

February 5th, 2010
7:07 pm

STROZ,

WE ARE COUNTING ON YOU DUDE! MAKE US PROUD! MAKE YOUR VOICES HEARD! LET’S CLEAN UP THE MESS IN THIS ORGANIZATION BY GETTING RID OF THE TRASH (WADDELL)!

Yung JB from MTL

February 5th, 2010
7:08 pm

Haha im watching kovy on tv and the thrashers online
The jersey doesnt fit him well

Mrs. Zoomo

February 5th, 2010
7:30 pm

While my guys were watching the start of the Devils game (damn NHL Center Ice) the Thrashers quietly scored a goal.

That Devils jersey just doesn’t look right!

Stay Thirsty My Friends

February 5th, 2010
7:32 pm

Kovy just got his first point as a Devil as Ovechkin just blasted one by OP – DAMN!!!!

LAC

February 5th, 2010
7:33 pm

Just watched to IK press confrence in NJ today… This on the NJ Center Ice feed. He said he is GLAD to be with a FIRST-CLASS Franchise where the coaches KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING.

Gee Whiz ! He already has an assist tonight and the fans in NJ are going crazy over him, I wonder how many of the 2,500 will be buying Odulya jersey’s Saturday night… Just pitiful to see, watch and hear.

Then you should have seen the IDIOT himself waddell, looking like a complete street BUM, blabbing somemore of his BS and making me sick to my stomach.

What in the HELL do WE have to do to RID the Thrashers of this THING,
hell he is not worthy of being called a human being anymore, what with all his LIES.

Yung JB from MTL

February 5th, 2010
7:34 pm

he did have a point but hes not making any impact.
i mean Gustavson sucks

LAC

February 5th, 2010
7:55 pm

Boy rick dudley looks “HAPPY”…. Gee Whiz. Says trade a good one, WHAT ? It Stinks, It is ALL over in Atlanta, just MOVE THE TEAM,
and get an AHL Team here and let’s just have fun with that, and the THING will at least be GONE !

Bob

February 5th, 2010
8:01 pm

Nice to see the rest of the boys nut up and bring it tonight. Caps should wear them down eventually, but they’re bringing it to them tonight. That was a b/s instigator on Thorburn. Pavs brought it tonight as well.

Yung JB from MTL

February 5th, 2010
8:27 pm

hahahha Kovy’s no-backchek caused a Leafs goal! he goes to change while the pucks in the D zone

Stay Thirsty My Friends

February 5th, 2010
8:29 pm

Kovy’s first penalty as a Devil results in a Buds PPG – I think he was in the middle of one of his figure 8’s when he interfered!!

Harry Sinden

February 5th, 2010
8:35 pm

Goals are hard to come by with him, how is this bunch going to take up the slack? Litttle? Afinogenov? the rookie Evander Kane? Atl leads the league in 1 goal losses–and I don’t see the picture improving any this year. Look for us to challenge Carolina for the SE cellar, and maybe overtake them!! We got screwed, we got nobody in return and the chance to draft a couple more Let-em-ins or Stefans. The future is so bright….

buzzgt90

February 5th, 2010
8:53 pm

The Thrashers have been spiraling down since the firing of the coach that was actually making progress: Bob Hartley. Don’t get me wrong, I like John Anderson. But until we get rid of Wad-dell this team is going nowhere except another city, and it may not be very long.

LAC

February 5th, 2010
8:54 pm

Boy the two new guys looked like they were in the wild west and were getting ready to be hung.
If they could speak their minds…

Right The Coaster looked NTG, not too good after the first period… We look OK.

Rockem Sockem Thrasher

February 5th, 2010
9:15 pm

Andre looks terrible. No offense. What a nightmare

Rockem Sockem Thrasher

February 5th, 2010
9:23 pm

Peverly for captain

Yung JB from MTL

February 5th, 2010
9:25 pm

wow what a comeback by the devils!

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
9:31 pm

Anybody just see Kovalchuk lead the Devils to a superfast, 3-goal comeback win, in regulation time, over the Maple Leafs? Down, 3-1, Kovalchuk worked his magic. New Jersey won, 4-3.

Funniest thing of all? Glenn “Chico” Resch, the man who HARPOONED him relentlessly on a Center Ice broadcast, singing his praises. “With a sniper the caliber of Kovalchuk, all things become possible.” Boy, did he turn on a dime! Now “Chico” Resch is Kovy’s #1 fan.

Unbelieveable.

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
9:40 pm

Boy the two new guys looked like they were in the wild west and were getting ready to be hung.

They could also be nervous, playing in a system they’ve never seen as Devils without any practice time at all with their new teammates.

Not to discount the theory. Anything is possible. Just giving an alternate viewpoint.

Rockem Sockem Thrasher

February 5th, 2010
9:41 pm

45 shots on goal for the Thrash. Maybe things weren’t as bad as it looked. Andre didn’t look sharp at all.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
9:44 pm

Here’s your Thrashers-Caps boxscore. http://www.nhl.com/ice/boxscore.htm?id=2009020851

Newcomers Bergfors and Oduya were -1. At -2 were Nik Antropov and Todd White. At +1 were Rich Peverley, who had a short-handed goal, and Ron Hainsey. Toby Enstrom scored his 5th goal of the year. Atlanta managed 44 shots on goal. That’s a positive. The Washington goal, Neuvirt (sp?) really played very well. I simply must give him credit. Atlanta didn’t look like a team whose spirit had been trampled. In fact, they scored early in the 1st period.

If Don Waddell and the Spirit are serious about the playoffs, they’ve got to find some more players before the deadline. In fairness to the Thrashers, the Capitals are in the midst of one heckuva 13-game winning streak. GM George McPhee deserves a lot of credit for this roster. I still think the Eastern Conference comes down to the Capitals vs. the Penguins. I appreciate what New Jersey has done, in getting Kovalchuk. I’m just not convinced, yet, that the Devils are Cup favorites.

stendec

February 5th, 2010
9:53 pm

Time to sit Pavs down! Play Moose until he drops. Liked what I saw. Entire team was busting their a$$es against the Crapitals! Pavs was a complete embarrassment. Four goals? Four damn goals! Totally unacceptable under the circumstances. Weak links simply cannot be tolerated until team chemistry has an opportunity to gel. I foresee this group making a serious playoff run. Players displayed grit and fire. Two goal were about all they would have gotten even if you know who had played. Pleasure to watch this group. Actually had thoughts of a victory until Pavs pulled his Kari Lehtonen bullshet act! Moose can get the Thrashers to the promised land. Cannot do so if he is on the f#cking bench! Right John Petrino? You ignorant son of a betch! ++STENDEC++

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
9:56 pm

Okay, let’s talk Kovalchuk. Here’s the boxscore for the Leafs-Devils game. http://www.nhl.com/ice/boxscore.htm?id=2009020850

Kovy was “even” on his +/-, playing 21:43, including 4 powerplay minutes. He had no goals and two (2) assists, for two-points, with one (1) shot on goal. He also has 2 penalty minutes. Not a bad debut for the new Devil. No pun intended.

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
10:06 pm

Okay, folks. It’s gonna bother me if I don’t say it. Did you see the “glee” in Kovalchuk’s eyes when that game tying goal went in? Kovy “mobbed” his new teammates, as if they’d been together for YEARS and YEARS. I know I sound like the jilted lover here, but I don’t like seeing him ‘this happy, this quickly.’ When you break up with someone, you want a period of stagnation. You don’t want your “ex” to fall MADLY, DEEPLY in LOVE, twenty-four hours later, with a “1st class organization.”

Bobby

February 5th, 2010
10:06 pm

I’m from Vancouver, but I thought it would be interesting to see what Thrasher fans thought of the trade (almost all of yesterday’s comments were negative). So I was surprised to read this article on Sportsnet.ca http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2010/02/05/waddell_trend/ Now I know why everyone seems to hate DW & the ownership group

LAC

February 5th, 2010
10:11 pm

Kovy in post game… “It is an HONOR to be here”. On the fly is spending ALL the top in him, makes me ILL !

Why can’t they be discussing don waddell’s firing or resigning or car accident… WHY NOT !

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
10:30 pm

Bobby, thanks for the link. Waddell comments usually push the bile to the tip of my throat. But with him actually saying, “Basically, we’ve been a one-man team,” it’s just exasperating. Then he says, “We already paid him $47 million. So, with the new deal, he’d make a lifetime salary of $147 million. We thought that would be enough to meet his needs.”

Do you see it? Do you see … just how CLUELESS he is? It’s just NOT about the money. It’s that no star player here … actually believes … that this franchise will ever amount to anything. It’s a minor league look and feel. Bobby, out in Vancouver, you guys fired a very good GM, in David Nonis. And the Canucks fired him … simply because he didn’t advance the team into the Conference Finals within 3 years. It was looking good for Vancouver, last year, under GM Mike Gillis, to be in the CF, but the Blackhawks took the series in six games. When you guys faced the UFA crisis, you did re-ink the Sedins. In Vancouver, hockey is very important. And the community would never tolerate Waddell and the Atlanta Spirit, LLC’s manner of running things. In Atlanta, hockey isn’t a major sport on the landscape. But it would be solidly supported, if the team had any sort of CLUE how an NHL franchise is supposed to be run. Our GM has been here since Day 1, with no accountability over results. A decade’s worth of seasons later, we still haven’t won a playoff game, and we still cannot keep any of our star players, once they can CHOOSE where to play. It’s a sad state of affairs. But yet, we hold out hope … that the NHL will step in and appoint someone to run the team for the next few seasons.

If properly run, this city will sellout hockey games. In its Inaugural season, before any Atlantan could possibly know the futility of what would come, Atlanta fans soldout Philips Arena 38 times in 41 home games. That’s where the ACTUAL interest in hockey was … before this GM and several incarnations of uncaring ownership got their meathooks into it.

stendec

February 5th, 2010
10:32 pm

The Thrashers will be in the playoffs! Moose will engineer the run as anchor. Pavs is sadly nothing more than a Kari Lehtonen choker! If they fail to reach the playoffs I will provide the rope and tar and feathers myself. Don Waddell and Thrasher owners will be serviced first! ++STENDEC++ Then I take my vigilante party up New Jersey way!

Bob

February 5th, 2010
10:33 pm

“Did you see the “glee” in Kovalchuk’s eyes when that game tying goal went in?”

Saw it. Saw it first last nite on Channel 2 as their cameras caught him leaving the restaurant with Grossman as they heard they out free at last, free at least, thank Gawd almight, I’m free at last

And Waddell believed since last summer they ever wanted to stay here, Grossman played Waddell like a fiddle

stendec

February 5th, 2010
10:40 pm

Wayne Gretzy once called the New Jersey Devils a Mickey Mouse organization! Look at them now. The Flames played tough hockey in Atlanta them eventually claimed a Stanley Cup in Calgary. Thrashers may capture top NHL prize in another city but roots started in Georgia! Don Waddell OR NO Don Waddell. I personally prefer the latter! The Thrashers will be in the playoffs! Moose will engineer the run as anchor. Pavs is sadly nothing more than a Kari Lehtonen choker! If they fail to reach the playoffs I will provide the rope and tar and feathers myself. Don Waddell and Thrasher owners will be serviced first! Then I take my vigilante party up New Jersey way! ++STENDEC++

Brendan

February 5th, 2010
10:42 pm

Strummed him like a guitar, Bob. When, oh when, will the NHL step in … to clean up this mess? In fairness, tonight’s game wasn’t a bad one. They played a great, playoff-bound team and lost, while registered 44 or 45 shots on net. But c’mon. This team doesn’t have the horses to get it done. And March 3rd will get here pretty quickly. Especially when you figure the roster freeze between February 12-28th. If Don really wants to be a BUYER, he’s got to start finagling deals now.

But truthfully, and sincerely … I hope he does nothing. I have zero confidence in him. I just wish … that somehow, some way … his influence over this team could end tomorrow.

Tom

February 5th, 2010
10:45 pm

Bobby,

All we have heard from Don Waddell over the past few years is lies. He promised he would spend what it took to make us a playoff team, then has to scramble to hit the league minimum.

Hossa played him, Kovalchuk played him, Savard walked without a fight. There is not a top level free agent that will come to town.

He has alienated some very passionate fans, my family included, and has steered a franchise onto the rocks of failure.

The only thing that makes Waddell look good is when you compare him to our absentee landlord owners. But that is for another rant.

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
10:45 pm

One of you “lucky” STH’s that are going to the Town Hall meeting while you are ripping Dip-Wad and the ANSG please do me one favor – bring up the Interview Dip-Wad had with the Washington media today where he made the comment that “The Fans are upset, but they don’t know just how good we got in this trade” Nice work Dip-Wad (Dip-head, Dip-Sh*t), now rip on the people who halp pay your SALARY. Hopefully tomorrow you and your Teflon hair announce you are moving on to destroy another team so we can truly, TRULY be a rebuilding team.

stendec

February 5th, 2010
10:45 pm

Wayne Gretzy once called the New Jersey Devils a Mickey Mouse organization! Look at them now. The Flames played tough hockey in Atlanta them eventually claimed a Stanley Cup in Calgary. Thrashers may capture top NHL prize in another city but roots started in Georgia! Don Waddell OR NO Don Waddell. I personally prefer the latter! ++STENDEC++

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
10:48 pm

Good Gawd…236 comments in 12 hours. You guys ripped this blog up!! Way to go!

OK…here’s a new one for ya to destroy.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
10:52 pm

Stendec – u r crackin’ me up man! Hysterical. U r absolutely right about Pavs, he is good for stretches but I think he has focus issues. I liked the effort and hustle in the 1st period (watchin’ the replay) and I think folks will warm to Bergfors rather quickly. He’s a heckuva talent. And Oduya is SOLID.

East Point Bob

February 5th, 2010
10:59 pm

Well what has been said about this and Waddell has been said, what else is there ? We all want him fired and I guess that will not happen, do like me and boycott the games, I’m fed up and will not be attending any futher Thrasher games. I did notice tonight the interviews with the two new guys, they looked like they were in an Iranian jail about to be beheaded. It was awful, simply awful, just like everything with this asg group, a real freak show, right here in Atlanta.

LAC

February 5th, 2010
11:08 pm

Wow, Tampa got sold FAST, it came out of nowhere. Why can’t the NHL help us FANS find a new OWNER here ?

Brett

February 5th, 2010
11:14 pm

Is Pavs really the future of Thrasher goaltending? Puuuuuuuuuuuuuuhlease!!!!