Waddell could face a cranky crowd Saturday night

Thrashers fans have had a rough week, (duh1).

It started with the 4-3 loss in Nashville last Saturday night…continued with a lack-luster performance Tuesday during a 2-1 loss to Tampa Bay…then came the news that general manager Don Waddell had informed Ilya Kovalchuk he’s going to be traded…the promised trade Thursday and we saw yet another star player depart Thrasherville…all of that was then followed by Friday’s 5-2 loss in Washington to the Capitals, the Thrashers third straight defeat and fifth in the last seven.

So it’s understandable that Thrashers fans might just be in a cranky mood as they enter into Philips Arena for the first home game post-Kovalchuk.

And Waddell won’t have to wait for Saturday night’s  game to begin gauging the mood of his paying customers. Nope…he’s extended an invite to season ticket holders to attend a town hall meeting an hour prior to face off. And I’m sure there are some who are just chompin’ at the bit to tell Don just exactly what’s on their mind.

I’ll give the man this much…he doesn’t shy away from standing up in front of a crowd of people, many of whom that may be looking for his immediate firing, and take it. Regardless of what you or I might think of his performance as GM, that isn’t an easy thing to do…especially given what the fans of this team have been through recently.

I’m sure later on we’ll hear from those of you who will attend about what was said and discussed in the meeting…but what I would like to know now is what you are thinking of saying to/asking Waddell, should you get the chance tonight.

Are ya planning on telling him you are still behind him regardless of the circumstance?

Are you going to tell him you are sick of the constant “re-building” with little to show for it?

Are you planning on telling him just how much you think the team is closer to the Cup after the trade with the Devils this week?

Will you ask him if he thinks Rick Dudley will make a good replacement general manager?

Inquiring minds want to know…

Oh, And There Was a Game Tonight

As for the loss to the Caps…look, the Thrashers ran into the proverbial buzz saw. In beating the Thrashers, Washington has now won 13 straight and 16 of their last 17…the lone loss coming in Tampa Bay back on January 12. They didn’t seem to be bothered at all from playing in New York the night before, beating the Rangers 6-5.

Washington is now 40-12-6 and are making a joke out of the Southeast Division…their 86 points are tops the NHL. With the loss, the Thrashers are now 24-24-8….and Don Waddell along with the Octocluster are making a joke out of this franchise.

rim-shot…thank youuuuuuuu.

Ondrej Pavelec started and saw 4 of the 31 shots he faced get past him.

Johnny Oduya make his Thrashers debut Friday night (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Johnny Oduya make his Thrashers debut Friday night (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

Rich Peverley had a multi-point night, assisting on Toby Enstrom’s goal that put the Thrashers up 1-0 early on. He then scored on a breakaway in the third to make the score 4-2. It looked like Washington goalie Kichal Neuvirth had stopped Peverley’s attempt…but his defender helped to knock the puck over the line following the play.

The newcomers that came over in the trade with New Jersey were able to see action with their new team on this night. It’s really tough to judge them after one game…after traveling to D.C. in the morning and having no real practice time with the squad.

Johnny Oduya had no points or shots and was a –1 during his 20:38 TIO. He, along with Enstrom, Ron Hainsey, Zach Bogosian and Pavel Kubina were called on to play more given the fact that Boris Valabik left halfway through the game with what was described as a “lower body injury”.

Nicklas Bergfors had no points and was a –1, but was able to get off 4 shots during his 12:53 TOI. Those four shots tied him with Rich Peverley for second most on the team…Zach Bogosian and Slava Kozlov each had 5.

Nik Antropov and Todd White were each a –2 on the night…White is now a –17 for the year.

228 comments Add your comment

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
10:50 pm

First? Wanted to annoy you guys with it!

Somaatl95

February 5th, 2010
10:50 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 help 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.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
10:56 pm

Damn it Bill!! I was bonding with stendec!! Geeez.

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.

Ashe

February 5th, 2010
11:02 pm

We didn’t lose a thing in the trade. We gained a new identity, and a new need for our players to show up and make their own way. we made out like bandits for a ufa. I support everything DW has done the past 3 years.

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
11:02 pm

Oh yeah, please wake up Levenson and Gearon! Ur new GM is right there under ur nose!! Promote Dudley and sh!t can Waddell now!!

Sara

February 5th, 2010
11:02 pm

Rawhide, you have an amazing talent for understatement.

Oh, and I’m gonna tell my daddy what you said about him. :p

stendec

February 5th, 2010
11:08 pm

Hi Smoothie and Bill.

Wayne Gretzky, who may be a bit of an authority on ice hockey, did once refer to the New Jersey Devils as a Mickey Mouse organization. Not for the adorable Mickey Mouse Club ears either! That “first class organization” does not look so rodenty now does it? Oh well.

This pretty much sums up my feelings AK…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 bull#### act! Moose can get the Thrashers to the promised land. Cannot do so if he is on the ####### bench! Right John Petrino? You ignorant son of a #####! ++STENDEC++

Thanks for new forum Mr Rawhide sir!

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
11:08 pm

Damn it Bill!! I was bonding with stendec!! Geeez.

Smoothie – Thanks so much for that visual.

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
11:15 pm

Have we actually turned a corner here?

No, I don’t mean on an organizational basis. I mean this:

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.

Because I agree with every last word of it. Every. Word.

Pavelec needs work. Lots of work. Caps went glove side high on him for every single goal.

Thrashers had a ton of hustle, but they need to lift the puck. 22 shots against Washington in the second period? And nothing to show for it?? They kept shooting at the emblem. Think higher, guys, and we would have run away with this thing.

Scotty

February 5th, 2010
11:16 pm

I think what you’re trying to say is……

FIRE WADDELL!

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
11:25 pm

Yes Scotty but I prefer to be a bit vulgar when being vehement. Perhaps me and stendec have more in common than anyone could have guessed.

Little looked rejuvenated out there. But Antro is laboring. The Little Russian iceBerg line seems to have good chemistry already. But I wonder if it wouldn’t be better to give Antro a breather and let Little have the more difficult assigment of center. And it might get Antro shooting more along with a slightly easier time till his hip heals more.

Tony C.

February 5th, 2010
11:26 pm

cranky?????
Understatement-thy name is “Rawhide”.

At least maybe we’ll see a PP that actually shoots the puck. Maybe?

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
11:29 pm

Brendan Burke, Brian Burke’s son, was killed in an auto accident today.

My heartfelt condolences go out to the family.

Brett

February 5th, 2010
11:32 pm

I thought the guys looked pretty good tonight. I’m not sure it’s fair to emphasis the result tonight since they played the Caps. Pavs is worrisome! He needs serious work. I’d like to see what Kari has to offer in the crease when he returns. Kari is amazing when healthy. That being the key…HEALTHY.

The intermission interviews where very telling!!! Not thrilled to be here!!!! Do you blame them? I do have one question though?? Do you think Oduya and Bergfors cry themselves to sleep tonight? Just wondering.

Rawhide

February 5th, 2010
11:35 pm

Alan R. – God that is awful. Very sad…thoghts and prayers to the entire Burke family.

The intermission interviews where very telling!!! Not thrilled to be here!!!! Do you blame them? I do have one question though?? Do you think Oduya and Bergfors cry themselves to sleep tonight? Just wondering.

Brett – Gotta agree with you there. I think Oduya said “it is what it is”.

Not a ringing endorsement.

Viking

February 5th, 2010
11:38 pm

Swedish player report: Bergfors appears to be speedy, excellent passer and shoots the puck. Lived up to his name which means “Mountain rapids”!

Hedberg (Moor Mountain) was missed and Enström (Juniper Stream) scored.

Oduya played fine considering the circumstances.

Alan R.

February 5th, 2010
11:43 pm

Not a ringing endorsement.

Oduya is here til 2011-2012, so he’ll have to give it some time, eh? Bergfors is also here for a while, as he is RFA at the end of the year.

Lived up to his name which means “Mountain rapids”!

I guess I was close. I guessed his name meant “Mountain force.” Then again, my Svenska isn’t all that good. ;)

Smoothie

February 5th, 2010
11:59 pm

Awful about Burke’s son. That’s why one should never wish ill-will on someone. That hits a little too close to home considering we have idiots on this blog threatening and wishing bad things on Waddell and Co.

Oduya is prolly very disappointed as he saw himself as a vital cog on a Cup contender. The Bergie Rapids is young and wants his chance to play big minutes, there ya go son. Make us proud. Oduya will need time but he’ll be fine.

Is it just me or does it seem every goalie of late commits grand theft larceny on us? Neuvirth on Hainsey, you can’t be serious? Geeeeezzz.

Don Waddell

February 5th, 2010
11:59 pm

The fans aren’t happy about moving down twice in the draft, but I think, they just don’t know how good Alex Bourret will be.

Don Waddell

February 6th, 2010
12:10 am

The fans are upset but they don’t know how fortunate they are to be in a position to pick one of the top five talented players in each year’s draft.

Brendan

February 6th, 2010
12:22 am

I agree with Don Waddell. Alex Bourret is the guy the Thrashers wanted all along. Can’t believe he was still available at #16. What fortune!! What fate! And we picked up Chad Denny and Pavelec in the process! It all, pretty much, came together PERFECTLY.

Segue, gaze at the new standings! http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?type=con#&navid=nav-stn-conf. Yes! We’re back in lottery draft contention!! Woo-hoo!!

Don Waddell

February 6th, 2010
12:28 am

The fans are upset, but they don’t know just how good the talent is in the lottery draft picks this summer.

I think I’ll trade down and add a few more third round picks that might be fourth line AHL material.

Brendan

February 6th, 2010
12:30 am

Sorry. Wrong link. This is the one for the complete NHL Rankings. Atlanta is situated at #25. That’s just one place out of the “Sweepstakes” for the 1st overall pick. Here’s your link. http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?season=20092010&type=LEA

Brendan

February 6th, 2010
12:31 am

Wouldn’t it have been great to fleece Boston out of that Toronto pick, with Kovalchuk? Bygones.

Don Waddell

February 6th, 2010
12:41 am

The fans might be upset but they just don’t know how much money they save by not having to buy playoff tickets.

Besides, I like taking April and May off each year.

Brendan

February 6th, 2010
1:00 am

http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=516307. The link is to an article by our ol’ pal John Manasso, on the highlights of Kovalchuk’s career, on and off the ice.

Somaatl95

February 6th, 2010
1:15 am

“Besides, I like taking April and May off each year” LOL @ Don Waddell

The real DW reminds me of Biff Tannen from “Back to the Future”

So why don’t you make like a tree, and get outta here?

Marian Hossa

February 6th, 2010
1:26 am

Hey Kovy, follow my lead and you’ll be out of here in no time…

Whitaker

February 6th, 2010
1:44 am

Brendan – I would have loved Boston giving us the Maple Leafs pick, but I think even with Ilya Boston’s 1st round pick might have been just as good. They have problems all over the ice. I think Boston made a great offer, and Don referred to it when he said that they were great offers, outstanding offers but had bad contracts. I am thinking Ryder and/or Wideman were part of it as well as B. Bitz… Honestly If I was Peter I would have offered Bergie (big name, big body, and could have helped us), Ryder (get rid of the salary) and the B’s first round draft pick.Yes,there is alot of salary there about 8 mill, but we have the room.

Questions – I would love to ask Don:
Who are our core group?
What player(s) does he think he can build around?
Will he even bother sending an offer to Ilya in July?
Did he really think it was a good idea to make a statement about the money that was turned down, before he trade Ilya?
Is Kari really the goalis we should be shopping?
When will be get a TRUE #1 playmaking center, no a fourth liner hopeful (white) or a winger who can play center (Nik)?
In his mind what is the new idenity he wants to build towards?
Does he really believe the fans are so uneducated?
Why not hang on to Ilya and trade for the rights to deal with Ilya before any other team?
What game were you watching Friday night the Devils in the hopes that Ilya stunk the place up or your own masterpiece that did?
Where do you see this team at this time next year, and do not say the play-offs?
How many more L’s will it take for him to fire Anderson?
How does he sleep at night knowing that he is screwing us and the team?
How many more rebuilding/bad decision years will it take for him to relize it is time for him to step down, that he does not hold all the answers?
Does he care more for his self-image or the team?
Is his plan to grow from within or trade away more propects in the hope of getting a building block?
How does it feel to be the new Buffalo?
Does he think players would rather play for the Oilers or Thrashers more?
Why have a town meeting just to act like we are fools?
When will he relize that yes, smaller players can play hockey BUT one cannot have a whole team of them?
When will he start scouting the Adult Hockey league here in GA? some of them are not much worst than the players we dress.
How does it feel to know that the whole NHL is laughing at us yet again? and those that are not are trying their best to say the trade was fair. BS!!
If giving away Hummers, Cars, and a bunch of other crap did not get people in the seats, and with the downsizing of the “goodies” at the game what is the new plan to get people to come out?
How is he going to convince me that I should continue to be a STH, when we are still treated like CRAP!! (compare to other teams)??
In his opinion do the owners have their head so far up each others butts or his that they cannot see what has happened to this team?
and a buch of other dumb questions… that he would never answer straight.

In Don’s opinion we are all fools, uneducated, and have no business asking a “HOCKEY GOD” questions… **GAGGING**

R. Stroz

February 6th, 2010
1:52 am

In case someone is reading this from the ASG:

Here’s a political saying which explains why you have NEVER been able to retain a top tier UFA or procure one in free agency.

IT’S THE ORGANIZATION, STUPID!

D Dub fought the law... Kovy won- see Blueland Chronicle

February 6th, 2010
3:11 am

“White is now a –17 for the year.” Not only will we not have the services of one IK17, we won’t have the 2nd largest contract the Thrashers have given out in free agency EVER…. once White is bought out next year. What’s worse, we may actually have to keep this bum around just to hit the salary floor for 2010-11……. DW has ruined hockey in Georgia

World Be Free

February 6th, 2010
7:08 am

The refs sucked last night. They were looking for penalities on one team in the first period, weren’t much better in the 2nd or 3rd. Washington doesn’t need their help.

Chicago lost to Phoenix in a shootout 2-1; looks like they could have used Kovy. Chicago looks stail lately.

Stendec is gaining a following – too bad you are not a STH, I think you’d give Don a Dennis Miller-type rant tonight that he’d never forget.

Finally, the team and network did the right thing last night at the 1st intermission-they put Rick Dudley on to talk hockey. Duds has never been a dynanmic interview (look into the camera) but he is a very good hockey mind. For me, it was the highlight of the evening. If Duds sez something is good, then that’s good enough for me. I hope Duds is at the town hall meeting, for the fans sake.

Our prayers for the Burke family.

Pittsburgh Pirate Fan

February 6th, 2010
7:12 am

Whitaker-good questions, I have a few more to add!

Not sure how long the meeting will be and how many questions “Teflon Don” will take.
I’d like to be a fly on the wall for this one!

The Real Thrash

February 6th, 2010
7:21 am

That Kovy, bad defense for us last night. Oh wait we lost without him. He had 2 assists in his win.
And we had MORE shots on goal! WTF?

Yankee

February 6th, 2010
7:23 am

I don’t have any faith that the STH will give DW enough crap. It seems like they lap up what he is feeding (from what I read) at these things. Always trying to be the ‘good long term fan’. Well, good long term fans in other cities and other sports let their teams management hear it when they don;t like something.

We are sick of this. Give ‘em hell!!

Kovy's Agent

February 6th, 2010
7:41 am

Rick Dudley may not be a dynamic interview but his suit and hairdo sure made him look like a third-rate pimp. Was that from the Don Cherry Collection, Rick? Must be what Kovy meant by 1st class organization.

Kovy's Agent

February 6th, 2010
7:45 am

Speaking of threads, will Don will go with the mock turtleneck look again tonight or try something new in light of the team having to once again reinvent itself?

Sage of Bluesland

February 6th, 2010
7:55 am

Of course, I won’t be at the silly wittle “town meeting”–that’s for the true sheep only. I stopped subsidizing the incompetence many years ago.

However, I wish one of the suckers who actually bought season tickets ask that bumbling, lisping fraud of a GM a couple of questions:

What “Five-Year Plan” are we on now?

What will it take to force a change of GM?

When will he resign?

What exactly is ownership’s “Plan” with this team: a budget-bottom-feeder just happy to be in the league or a real Cup contender? (This is a very important question, as it could finally make some sheep realize that this ownership is wasting your time/money–well, if you’re interested in actually ‘winning’).

What am I saying?! I just caught myself thinking the TRUTH would be told at one of these Sara-Specials!!! Silly me!

The usual suspect sheep will come back and say a great time was had by all–and that Donny answered all of the tough questions and showed alot of heart…and their hearts will be glowing that Donny really, weally DOES care about this team…

(I just threw up in my mouth a little bit just then)

Hotrod

February 6th, 2010
8:07 am

That was a good lively effort the first 2 periods.
The Caps powerplay is an absolute work of art.

The way I am coming to grips with the Kovy trade is that I am happy for the athelete that gets a chance to play for a playoff contender.

Look back at your little league sports days when the next year you were on one of those good teams after being on a bad team. It was just a better experience to win a few more games.

At first I was thinking we should pay the man, he said he wants to stay in Atlanta. But you know what, the price to stay with a struggling organization is always going to cost more, and Kovy was not going to budge.

So I am happy for him. He really deserves to be on a team that is not in a constant struggle mode. Under his breath, I think he is jumping for joy to be in a position to go deep in the playoffs.

Lee

February 6th, 2010
8:10 am

There won’t be a cranky crowd….because there won’t be a crowd.

Andrew

February 6th, 2010
8:26 am

As a Thrashers season ticket holder who has been fortunate enough to be at these meetings before, we can expect that some of the same rude, foul-mouthed, loud-talking, know-it-all-about-hockey, ill-tempered fans from up north who were raised with poor manners and little class by neglectful parents will (again) loudly speak out of turn, heckle and/or interrupt while Thrashers representatives and other fans are speaking (and who have politely waited their turns to do so).

suzy-q

February 6th, 2010
8:30 am

In my section all year I heard “Kovy, get off the ice”. And comments like “I don’t care- trade him. I’m sick of his lazy attitude.” So, Don trades him! We got rid of the slacker!

Kovy wanted OV’s money but does not play like OV. So, let’s move on and – hey AJC, it’s Saturday. How about a picture OTHER THAN THE GUY WHO DOES NOT PLAY FOR US ANYMORE? Maybe, Enstrom who gave us a tiny thrill up our leg last nite?

Don Waddell's mama

February 6th, 2010
8:40 am

Even I think Sonny Boy should be fired. The last person who overstayed their Atlanta welcome as much as Waddell has was a dude named Sherman. As far as the cranky crowd, you are right, all 12 of the fans at the game tonight will be in a bad mood. And rightfully so; the Thrashers have pi$$ed on their fans for over a decade now.

Go Thrashers Go! And take Waddell with you.

Thrasher Fan / just dont know why

February 6th, 2010
8:49 am

Lets take a leap and say somehow the Thrashers dont take the next train out of town..I can see the headline now on Feb 6th, 2020:

“Waddell to conduct town meeting to address the trade of Wayne Gretzy, Jr for a pretzel and a cold beer.. and the failure to make the playoffs AGAIN! In a related story, The Atlanta Spirit extends Waddell’s contract for another 10 years. “

Chick Fil A Cow

February 6th, 2010
8:54 am

tonights special, $89 for 4 tickets and 4 combo meals. Or you could drive thru, get the combo meals for $20, then go home and catch a real hockey team on the NHL network.

Remember

Eat Mor Crap (that Waddell is dishing out)

Pittsburgh Pirates fan

February 6th, 2010
8:57 am

Thrasher fans—Welcome to our world.

LAC

February 6th, 2010
8:58 am

What got me was the comment by The career Loser, was of 30 emails he got yesterday only 3 were negative. ANOTHER LIE.

DID you read that WIMP interview by the pip squeak beatwriter ? This chris proves everyday he is their tool and does what THEY tell him,
I always thought reporters were tough on people who are being dishonest.
Must be awful to be afraid all the time…

waddell did get blasted on Power Play yesterday, yhose guys just looked
real wide eyed, like “don lies and is a $hit GM” ? You could tell
they, like most all others who are not in Atlanta, think this Moron is doing a decent job. They did drop their collective jaws when waddell was called a LIAR, which is 1000% True !

Glad I don’t attend the games anymore, I like to think we will win everytime, not going to see if they don’t lose. Saving $ and not missing it at all. Ashame too, But it is what it is ! To coin a recent
Phrase…

Fortunate?????

February 6th, 2010
9:12 am

Andrew, you have been FORTUNATE to attend these meetings before? You probably enjoyed your last traffic court appearanc as well, you lucky guy. I dont condone rude behavior, but I do condone tough questions to the worst GM in the history of the NHL.

Hotrod

February 6th, 2010
9:42 am

I have just spent 15 minutes at the NHL website records section.

Names that keep appearing in the top 10 since Thrashers debut:

Heatly
Hossa
Savard
Kovulchuk

All come and gone. I guess I would have to conclude, even if we had the very best hockey player to ever play the game, odds are , we still would not make it to the playoffs under the current system.

We had Hossa and Kovy , at the same time, and could only get to the playoffs once with an 0-4.

Hey Smoothie what an assinine post

February 6th, 2010
9:46 am

Yours is the most idiotic post yet. How does Burkes tragedy indict those who think Waddell is an idiot? No one on this board is wishing tragically bad things on Waddell ..just for him to get fired. To imply that those of us who are justifiably critical of him are insensitive to the Burkes is just assinine.