Thrashers employ ‘less is more’ thinking at trade deadline

OK…raise your hands if you thought the trade deadline would come and go Wednesday with Colby Armstrong, Pavel Kubina, Maxim Afinogenov, Christoph Schubert and Mark Popovic all remaining on the Atlanta Thrashers’ payroll?

looking around the blogosphere…uh-huh, not too many.

I didn’t add Kozlov in that list of players because, quite frankly, I didn’t hold any hope that anyone would make any real offer for him, even though he was willing to waive his no-trade clause.

As Don Waddell put it, “We never had a offer to bring him”.

Clarke MacArthur, seen here battling Sidney Crosby Tuesday night, has 13 golas and 13 assists in 60 games this season (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Clarke MacArthur, seen here battling Sidney Crosby Tuesday night, has 13 golas and 13 assists in 60 games this season (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

However, like so many of you, I was somewhat surprised at yesterday’s lack of major moves by the Thrashers…but I have to admit, I’m absolutely OK with it. At the end of the day, it appears that the organization was not impressed enough by whatever offers they did receive for any of our players and decided to say, “thank but no thanks”. In doing so, they have chosen to keep these pending UFAs to make their playoff run over the rest of the way.

Regardless, compared to what was speculated for weeks, Waddudly opted for the ‘less is more’ theory and have decided that what they had in house was what they are willing to go with down the stretch.

It’s a gamble of course, as we could see these any number of these players depart Thrasherville with nothing to show for it than the service provided during the course of their contracts. In essence, instead of trading Army, Kubina and Max and then try to fill their spots…they have become Atlanta’s rentals.

But the panic button wasn’t pushed like it was in 2007, and as such Waddell didn’t “Zhitnik-ed” this go around. That in and of itself is a step in the right direction.

In keeping with the “less is more” philosophy… what the Thrashers are left with after ‘”less” deadline dealing than thought is “more or less” much the same as before…only a little “more”.

By that I mean…Opie and the Moose will remain to keep the goal, although not necessarily in that order. The seven defenseman in which John Anderson can ‘pick-six’ from are still Kubina, Hainsey, Oduya, Enstrom, Bogosian, Schubert and Popovic. Up front, Anderson still has the same players to pick from…in addition to now the newly acquired Evgeny Artyukhin and Clarke MacArthur. That means the coach has 15 forwards to choose from in order to fill out his lineup card…12 will play and 3 will view the action from press row.

To me, that means 12 play while one other join Slava Kozlov and Todd White at the press box buffet counter.

What do you think of the Thrashers 'less is more' trade deadline?

  • I'm more happy than I thought I'd be (46%, 51 Votes)
  • I think they're less likely to make the playoffs (13%, 14 Votes)
  • I'll more or less wait and see (41%, 46 Votes)

Total Voters: 111

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Lineups could look something like…Antropov-Little-Bergfors…Kane-Slater-Armstrong…Peverley-Afinogenov-MacArthur…Reasoner-Boulton-Thorburn. Sure, you could mix and match a couple of those lines… maybe even sit Clarke in favor of Artyukhin’s size out there and we’d see…ahem…MacArthur park next to Slava and Todd in the press box.

sorry…

But either way, clearly Anderson has some options today that he didn’t have when the week began.

As for Wednesday’s pick up from Buffalo…C-Mac played in 60 games for the Sabres this year and has scored 13 goals and just as many assists…four goals and three assists came while on the power play. The big number, however, that has been pointed out is the Todd White-esque minus 14, which was the worst +/- rating in Buffalo this season. The career numbers for the 74th overall selection by Buffalo in 2001 is 41 goals, 38 assists, 127 PIM and a –11 during 187 NHL games.

MacArthur will be an RFA this summer and is coming off a contract that paid him $1.4 million for the season.

In comparison, Artyukhin has 4 goals and 9 overall points in 37 games played in Anaheim with 41 PIM and an EVEN +/- rating. In his career, he’s amassed 14 goals and 28 assists along with a –3 and 282 penalty minutes in 182 games. He’s slated to be a UFA on July 1 and his contract has been worth $950,000 this season.

Returning to the Afinogenov, Kubina and Armstrong situations…as discussed previously, Waddudly will have between now and June 30 to talk contract with these players and other pending UFAs. Waddell has indicated that he intends to discuss a deal with Kubina’s agent and maybe that played a big part in his decision not to ship him off. Could the same be true for Armstrong and Afinogenov…maybe even Schubie and Pops?

Maybe…but right now there is this little thing we call a playoff hunt to deal with. And these guys have been retained to help get the Thrashers back there for the first time since their one-and-only excursion past 82 games three years ago.

And how they perform toward that goal could…more or less…dictate if they want to stick around for a little while longer.

118 comments Add your comment

Jeremy H

March 3rd, 2010
10:04 pm

Does anybody think we even tried to move White? He’s virtually useless to this team now, so I was hoping to see such a trade take place. We have to have been able to drum up at least a 7th for him, right? Or has his value depreciated that much?

You might disagree, but I can’t help but think trading him for a 7th, is better than having him take up 2M+ and a roster spot in ‘10-’11.

Buzz

March 3rd, 2010
10:15 pm

Waddell is puffing smoke saying the Thrashers were “buyers.”

The truth is that no one was buying what we were selling … Kozlov, White especially.

I think the Thrashers are going towards the 4 lines of fury model the Sabres used a few years back, and it is fun to watch if done properly. And I like MacArthur (but worry he is a defensive liability) and Artukin (I spelled that wrong).

The Thrashers should waive White and Kozlov, and try to resign Armstrong, but not for much. He’s not worth what he thinks he is. He lacks offensive skills.

Afinogenov will not resign here. No way. But he will score a few goals during the next few weeks and may be enough to get us into the playoffs.

I wish we could have gotten Chris Higgins.

kracker

March 3rd, 2010
10:17 pm

[Stopping reading to post] Bill, I read today in one of the trade deadline twitter tweets (from who I don’t remember) that the Thrash and Kubina were actually getting close on a contract extension. Have you heard anything?

[back to reading...]

Hockey Biltong

March 3rd, 2010
10:19 pm

I am suprised that another trade was not made. However, we have Arty to cover us in size and perhaps Macarthur will do better here under new tutelage.

Sara

March 3rd, 2010
10:23 pm

Few thoughts –

There wasn’t anything out there worth chucking good assets away. As pointed out, I’d rather take the rental view of the guys we have that already know the systems than bring in someone else who’d likely just walk away in two months anyway. I think there’s much more promise in the off-season than the deadline. Chicago still has a nasty cap situation to deal with and will need to chuck some assets themselves. We’ve got a nice stockpile of prospects and picks and the Dudley connection to try and get a real long-term solution there. Or package something to move up in the draft. Or plenty other scenarios that don’t involve spending something to get virtually nothing.

As for not moving out our own pending UFAs well … generally speaking, play-off teams don’t. You see San Jose or Jersey or Philly or Colorado dumping all their UFAs? Nope. Toronto, Carolina, Edmonton, Florida, Columbus … those were the primary teams sending out players left and right … cause they are all going nowhere this season and don’t need them. Since the Thrashers are poised to potentially go somewhere, we do need them. At this point, making the play-offs will provide more benefit to the franchise than picking up a few more mid-round draft picks, which was the primary currency of the day. It will mean something to the fans and to attract interest in the team again. It will mean even more to the players. As Bill points out, maybe a pending UFA decides to stick around after all. Maybe other pending UFAs see the Thrashers in the play-offs and don’t laugh hysterically when their agent calls this July and says “Don Waddell just called me and …” It’s invaluable experience for our young core of players. It’s about pride even.

We’re an in-between team right now, which translated into an in-between deadline approach. No need to take backward steps, even if it just relates to this season, but also not at a point where making runs at UFAs makes much sense either. We’re still in the same spot we were last night – other than two points and one position higher in the standings. And that’s not a bad place to be right now.

Rawhide

March 3rd, 2010
10:26 pm

Does anybody think we even tried to move White? He’s virtually useless to this team now, so I was hoping to see such a trade take place. We have to have been able to drum up at least a 7th for him, right? Or has his value depreciated that much?
You might disagree, but I can’t help but think trading him for a 7th, is better than having him take up 2M+ and a roster spot in ‘10-’11

Jeremy H – The best way I can respond to that is to ask you…if you were a GM of any of the 29 other NHL teams, would you have given up even as much as a 7th rounder for Todd White’s salary and his numbers?

Not me..no way…nuh-uh.

[Stopping reading to post] Bill, I read today in one of the trade deadline twitter tweets (from who I don’t remember) that the Thrash and Kubina were actually getting close on a contract extension. Have you heard anything?
[back to reading...]

kracker – [stopped watching TV to answer] No…no I haven’t. [back to watching TV...]

Smoothie

March 3rd, 2010
10:26 pm

BTW, since Kovy’s departure, this team has averaged a hair over 34 shots per game. Better yet, they’ve been eclipsing the ever important 10% shooting mark more often than not. Let’s see, adding in my head, we have 18 goals (19 if you include Kaner’s EN) in 6 games. Take away the WSH game in which we only had 2 goals on 45 shots and that’s 16 goals in 5 games or 3.2 per. In those 5 games, we’ve averaged around 32 SOG and whatta ya know? 3.2 / 32 = 10%

Keep that up along with the goaltending we’ve been getting since January 6th and you end up with quite a few more wins. 1 down, 12 more to go!! 12 out of 21 doesn’t seem so daunting does it? :-)

Telfo

March 3rd, 2010
10:30 pm

considering what was available(not much) i am perfectly happy with what we didnt do. we still have a ton of picks and can trade some of them at the draft to teams *cough* chicago *cough* that have a ton of good players and cap issues.

Jeff

March 3rd, 2010
10:38 pm

Bill: Artyukhin replacing Boulton in the line-up won’t mean MacArthur sits with White and Kozlov. It would mean Boulton joins those two in the press box, assuming they’re both scratched too. Furthermore, I seriously doubt Artyukhin and MacArthur will sit early on. I just hope Anderson’s love for White doesn’t hurt us further [TB SOL and maybe CHI SOL too]. White needs to be scratched before Kozlov in other words. Though I know that won’t happen given the history between Anderson and White together. Anderson does play favorites that way, but pretty much all coaches do, some just do so more than others (and more recklessly so). I’m not saying that to bash JA either. I’ve liked him for years as both a Thrashers and Wolves fan (and before that I liked him as a player).

PS: Speaking of Anderson’s playing days, I actually have Anderson’s last pro game on tape, it came in the 1994 IHL playoffs with the SD Gulls, whom the Atlanta Knights beat on their way to eventually winning the 1994 Turner Cup.

Badger Bob

March 3rd, 2010
10:41 pm

I thought we started the season strong in part because we made a lot of guys earn their roster spot out of training camp (bringing in Gratton to compete with Thorbs and Boults; bringing in Legace to compete with Pavs and Moose, etc.). Perhaps having 15 forwards will keep them competing for spots in the line up. Or perhaps it will screw with team chemistry. Anyway, I’m glad with the deals we DIDN’T make (i.e., shipping Max, Kubes or Army for mostly draft picks).

Jeff

March 3rd, 2010
10:48 pm

BTW, we really needed to add more offense. Those we’ve added, MacArthur included, are soso at best (and in MacArthur’s case, he’s been pretty bad). Moose has been great, but the goalie can only do so much.

That said, I am hopeful Moose will carry us to the playoffs. If so, I like our chances to win some playoff games this year. Moose has always been great in big games, esp. in the playoffs.

English Teacher

March 3rd, 2010
10:48 pm

I know it’s a little early to say this, but this seems like sensible dealing to me. The team is not playing badly, and these young guys bring good skills to the table. When you think of where we are weak (Kozzy, White), they have to be considered upgrades.

Jeff

March 3rd, 2010
10:52 pm

Oops, I cut out part of my last post by mistake. Here it is again fixed:

BTW, we really needed to add more offense. Those we’ve added, MacArthur included, are soso at best on defense (and in MacArthur’s case, he’s been pretty bad defensively). Moose has been great, but the goalie can only do so much.

That said, I am hopeful Moose will carry us to the playoffs. If so, I like our chances to win some playoff games this year. Moose has always been great in big games, esp. in the playoffs.

World Be Free

March 3rd, 2010
10:57 pm

As noted in a previous post-30 trades today and nobody of note was moved. Not all the teams were active today either.

The trade deadline is a time to add picks, prospects, UFAs (rentals). It is not a time to add top 6 forwards, top 4 defenseman or number one goalies. The General (or MacArthur Park) will do for now.

Some of us had fun teaching Jeff Shultz Hockey 101 tonight. Glad we have Rawhide or the AJC would just be another paper at the bottom of the birdcage.

Hockey Biltong

March 3rd, 2010
11:08 pm

I’d like to call out the Atlanta TV and Radio corps. for doing such a craptasticly fine job of talking hockey and specifically of the draft deadline that just passed, following on the heels of one of the most watched Olympic Hockey games ever.
Not only were milions of eyes in N. America glued to the tv, but print, radio, twitter et al. all were chiming in.
So how is it in this 4 sport city that I cant even hear one iota of information on the draft from the Thrashers flagship station 680 the fan??? In their brief “sports blast” segments that come up every 15 minutes, it’s everything but Hockey.
680 you are a bunch of homerified bums. Lazy and unsupportive of a team that actually is a client of yours. You got Hainsey on the radio for a nano second, and not one producer could come up with any nugget after the “big promo” monday. Tuesday was crap. Wednesday was even worse crap.
So screw you. I think you should all take a collective flying f&ck through a rolling donut and then mill about smartly all the while sipping on baseball and nascar koolaid.
And when this team succeeds, I hope you are locked up in your smelly, botulism petri dish of a studio, where you cant even get a vowel for a sound byte.

Hockey Biltong

March 3rd, 2010
11:10 pm

2,5,11,46, 790, 750, 96, 93 et .al.

Tony C.

March 3rd, 2010
11:20 pm

Not bad work IMHO-would rather kept the guys we did than roll the dice on a new guy(s) coming in.

I like the fact that our coaching staff is now telling the front office what & who they want, rather than the old way of DW handing the coach crazy different pieces and walking away saying “figure it out dude”.

I wonder who they (coaches and front office) have in their sights as this summer’s UFA target-I have two words of suggestion: Patrick Marleau. Don’t know that’d happen, but I would like to see us make a serious run at him-I believe he’d thrive here.

Spoke with D. Elliott @ Taco Mac last night-we discussed #23 maybe wearing the C someday soon-we both like the fire he’s brought since his prolonged pressbox adventure, and DE pointed out that he’s the NHLPA rep for the team, so he’s got a lot of confidence from the other guys in the room.

Yall’s thoughts?

kracker

March 3rd, 2010
11:22 pm

Yeah, Hockey Biltong, 680 the Fan, the “flagship station” of the Thrashers [not], is pretty much all baseball now. Pretty much how a “flagship station” of the Braves should be but how they never were for the Thrashers. Not being a baseball fan these days, I turn to 790 the Zone now.

Tony C.

March 3rd, 2010
11:25 pm

Also, I think Artyukhin’s hands are a lot better than most people want to credit him with.

kracker

March 3rd, 2010
11:36 pm

Tony C. – “I like the fact that our coaching staff is now telling the front office what & who they want, rather than the old way of DW handing the coach crazy different pieces and walking away saying “figure it out dude”.”

I agree, I think DW went too much of the time with a flawed strategy of trying to cobble together some cheap vets, hoping to for them to click, in a win-now strategy. He just ended up w/ a mis-mash of lower line players that had more off nights than good nights.

Slates for the C?? He’s got the heart for it, that’s for sure…and he can represent the team in the media…he needs to maybe to get some hand lotion for those stone hands, haha. Interesting thought, though, a Cap doesn’t have to be the best player or the oldest, just be liked, respected and be an effective communicator.

Kaat

March 3rd, 2010
11:41 pm

I am sick of reading Kozlov is better off in the pressbox. He’s just out of favor with the management. He’s way better than most of the guys playing. He just pissed off the wrong people and went into a slump at the same time and was banished.

kracker

March 3rd, 2010
11:46 pm

“He just pissed off the wrong people and went into a slump at the same time…”

Not a good way for an experienced top-6 vet to justify keeping his job. So…he sits. [And I'm a huge Slava fan]

Brendan

March 3rd, 2010
11:47 pm

I hadn’t thought of it in terms of “renting” your own players. But, I suppose if this this team really is thinking about the playoffs, that’d be the correct view. For me, I didn’t see this as a playoff team. So, I was thinking about asset recovery, in a ’salvage mission’ for the future.

This team, as presently assembled, will bounce between spots #8-11 from now until the conclusion of the season. It’ll be an exciting finish. But if this team finishes outside of the playoffs, I won’t ROAST bloggers who say, “I told you so” or “Should have traded Kubina and Moose back at the deadline.” There’s plenty of room for argument, in my book. Let’s say the Thrashers don’t make the playoffs. If the run is a memorable one, some fans will walk away feeling satisfied that we TRIED. As fans, generally-speaking, that’s what we want our team to do. We want them to seriously TRY for the playoffs.

Me, personally, I assess the Thrashers situation differently. I don’t think this team will make the playoffs. I’m not saying they can’t make it in. I’m not saying, “the run won’t be memorable.” What I’m saying is, I don’t see a deep run, even if this team does get in. I see the Thrashers as still being in a ‘building process,’ post NY Rangers sweep. With that in mind, I’m guilty of trying to look towards the future.

If Moose, Finny, Kubina, Army, Schubie, Pops, etc., all walk … then what are we ‘building’ by KEEPING them? Why worry about team chemistry by keeping players who won’t be here next training camp? Okay, someone just screamed, “But if Atlanta does real well, maybe they’ll stay?”

Raise your hand, if you a little bit ’sick-n-tired’ of hearing that one? In the end, until serious ownership is found, and the organization develops a modicum of accountability, the players vote of ‘no confidence’ will continue, when it’s the PLAYER’S CHOICE of where to sign. Every major pending UFA … walks out on the Atlanta Thrashers. If we couldn’t come to terms with Kubina, he isn’t staying, barring a miracle. Same deal with Armstrong. Moose, I won’t rule out. He might re-sign. That wouldn’t shock me. I hope MacArthur Park will re-sign with us. At least we control his rights. If Schubie and Pops and Boulton and Slater walk out the door, they’re all replaceable. I kinda regret losing Oystrick. But, it’s not as if the franchise’s future was tied to him.

Despite feeling like the organization misjudged the situation, I honestly think there’s reason to believe the games in April will be relevant. We’re seriously outmatched in those April encounters. But hey, my college philosophy teacher once told me that, “in life, it’s not the destination that counts, it’s the journey.”

Brendan

March 3rd, 2010
11:58 pm

Tony C., I can’t really see Slater wearing the “C” anytime soon. While he is one of the most tenured Thrashers, at this point, a Captain should lead by example. The reason even Darren Eliot calls him “Second Half Slater” should be fairly obvious. And a Captain shouldn’t take half a season off. A captain should put the team up on his shoulders, and carry them.

Did I just describe Jim Slater? Not really. But I do think an “A” may be warranted. The guy tries very hard. He’s just limited in his ability. For instance? Okay, imagine it’s Game 7 of a playoff series. The Thrashers are on the Power Play. The Coach must choose which 4 forwards and one defender he puts out on the ice, to WIN THE GAME and SERIES. Is Jim Slater on the ice?

And that’s what I’m talkin’ about. Right there. Jim Slater deserves a lot of credit for surviving in the NHL, lo these many years. He’s carving out a bottom six forward position for himself. And while some people may laugh heartily at that, the fact is … every team needs “bottom six” forwards. If you’ve got players willing to ACCEPT that they are “bottom six forwards” and are willing to try to EXCEL at being a “bottom six forward,” then it’s not a bad thing at all.

I like Jim Slater. I’d ditch him, if I thought this or next season had the potential for a Stanley Cup. But it doesn’t. So, it’s okay that he stays. And it’s okay that he gets an “A” on his sweater. But I really don’t think Slater can carry this team, with a “C” on his sweater, the way a Captain should.

Kevin

March 4th, 2010
12:31 am

I’m not a Waddell hater but I think the way he has handled the Kozlov situation is low class. Don’t go to the papers and say we didn’t get an offer to bring him. Just comment that for what we were offered we decided to keep him. Very subtle insulting comment from Don.

I’m disappointed, Kozlov has been a great asset to this organization and resigned three years ago for quite a bit less than Dallas offered.

Winnipeg

March 4th, 2010
4:56 am

So has anyone heard the rumors that the team is moving to Winnipeg??? To be announced March 4 (today)???

World Be Free

March 4th, 2010
5:40 am

A Biltong classic-most of these ya-hos can’t tell a hockey puck from a chicken biscuit.
If it ain’t about Georgia football, it doesn’t receive any airtime.

I’ll cleanup my English now.

drajax

March 4th, 2010
6:27 am

there have always been players like Slater, who may have “stone hands” but they play with heart and make everyone they play with better. I’d take a couple more guys like him anytime. He is more than qualified to be our captain.

Alan R.

March 4th, 2010
7:25 am

I’m actually more surprised that more people thought those players listed at the top of the blog would be gone. Not moving Armstrong, Kubina, and Afinogenov means the organization now has extra time to try and pound out contract extensions for the three of them.

World Be Free

March 4th, 2010
7:45 am

Jimmy Slater gets the unsung hero award this season. He’s played hard every shift of every game. And his “game” has finally come around.

Hockey Biltong

March 4th, 2010
8:24 am

WBF – yes, I had to rant. But I’m royally pissed off. Tv news locally, is just one big fat ostrich. 6pm/10pm/11pm, there is nothing or one line. But college signing day, high school coach bonus day,
carpool baseball snow day, sheesh.Nada fer hockey.
Radio doesn’t have to sync pics with sound. All they have to do is blab. For those of you wondering,I am not referring to the game team, or pre or post game. I am speaking directly to the lard butts in drive time, mid day and afternoon shifts and their producers.
Coach Woodson invited Rude of 680 to sit behind the bench for an upcoming game, which Rude accepted. Maybe this should be a tactic employed by JA or DW the next time they can get a slice of air.
The Thrashers could give themselves benefit if they’d build a couple of rinks around the city too. You have to develop the kids to develop the sport. If hockey moms are here, you know the pro fans will be as well.
Go Thrashers.

Rawhide

March 4th, 2010
8:59 am

Jeff – You’re correct. I meant to sat sit “Clarke”…thanks.

Kaat – I too am a huge Kozlov fan…however, his play was not helping the Thrashers out at all. I feel terrible for him, not the way I wanted to see his fine career end here…but Anderson was absolutley justified in sitting him, IMHO. What really stinks about it is that it’s kept White outa the press box. That can change now though.

Winnipeg – yeah…we heard about it…yawn. Why don’t you come back tomorrow and tell us all what was said during the “announcement”

snicker…

DWTOO

March 4th, 2010
9:06 am

Was listening to 680 on monday while painting the hosue (great way to spend vacation days). Both UpChuck and Chernoff almost bragged about not watching the USA/Canada game to watch the NFL combine. Then they blew off a guy who wanted to talk about the Thrashers. At that point I voted with my fingers and plugged in a CD. Worthless piles of dog squeeze.

Dwayne

March 4th, 2010
9:25 am

White is going to break out any day now…aaaany day….still waiting…any day now……

Bob

March 4th, 2010
9:30 am

“I’m not a Waddell hater but I think the way he has handled the Kozlov situation is low class. Don’t go to the papers and say we didn’t get an offer to bring him. Just comment that for what we were offered we decided to keep him. Very subtle insulting comment from Don.”

Are you suprised? This is just more insight into why players won’t sign here and don’t want to play for Waddell. He even dissed the ONE guy in all the years that chose to sign here over other clubs. You can take the man out of the porta potty biz, but you can’t take the porta potty outa the man.

So Sara, I keep waiting for you to wo-man up and admit how dead wrong you were about Kovy? Care to discuss Brian Burke’s GM prowess after he just built a USA club that came within a Crosby OT goal of winning it all? Compare and contrast the job he did against Waddell’s job in the last Olympics?

Somaatl95

March 4th, 2010
9:37 am

http://makeitfour.blogspot.com/
All Thrasher fans need to Celebrate “Winnipeg Day” (a day to celebrate the foolishness and selfishness of others) and send a message that a city with a metro population of 600,000+ needs to stop talking smack about a city with a metro population of 5,000,000+. Happy Winnipeg Day, ATLANTA Thrasher Fans!

Slava Says

March 4th, 2010
9:50 am

“Atlanta coach likes playing in four [lines], while I think that it’s impossible to play the whole match this way as we simply lose the rhythm. Ilya and I tried to explain that it’s necessary to change picture of the game sometimes.

“In order to catch the rhythm it’s better to play in two or three [lines], but Anderson doesn’t feel it. Maybe he is inexperienced or maybe he sticks to his own directions after he won the cup in AHL”.

“I played both in AHL and NHL and these are absolutely different leagues. Not all coaches, who won something with the farm-club, can achieve something serious in NHL, and vice versa”.

“I was negatively surprised when Atlanta managers said after Ilya Kovalchuk’s quit that they hadn’t won any cup match in eight years with this player. Kovalchuk has done a lot for this team and I was hurt by these words. It means that it’s time for me to leave the club too”.

Okay, I get it. In light of these comments, it is now plainly obvious to me that Don Waddell should not only go out of his way to apologize to Slava and then force JA to start him on the 2nd line next game, but he should bow down and kiss Slava’s sweaty ass after today’s morning skate. Goodness gracious some of you folks are impossible.

Schroeder

March 4th, 2010
10:25 am

You don’t insult the boss and question his ability and expect everything to be rosy,how many of you out there would do that and expect to keep your job? Especially not in the media! If not for a contract he would certainly be out on his ear. I like Slava and respect the fine work he has done for this franchise,but come on,His play of late has not justified questioning ANYONE’S system. I have to say,that since Kovalchoke has been gone the system seems to be working now that it seems that it is based on a TEAM system as opposed to a one player system. Based on these comments by Slava alone would warrant an instant waiver IMHO. Any comments?

Smoothie

March 4th, 2010
10:34 am

Watch the waiver wire today, you know who could end up on the “unemployment” line. And perhaps Slava will get claimed by someone who might need a whiny, motivated veteran to bolster their PP.

BTW, speaking of waiver wire transactions, our new elder statesman, Chris Chelios, did NOT play for the Wolves last night in Chicago. He certainly could have done so, but for some reason he didn’t. I suspect that reason may be that he’s packing for ATL and will be here for the weekend. I would imagine Don Lever would love to have him back in the line-up, but Cheli’s immediate future is in the hands of another “Don”.

da 'boomer

March 4th, 2010
10:41 am

Amen Biltong – the only radio guy i heard that was truly excited about the US/Canada game was Steak. Of course the other two had no interest – Celllini was shoulder routime and Dimino was trying to decide who he was going to take to the jr prom – glavine or smoltz. Bell & Pollak are just bad with DP expressing a downright disdane for the sport. He may be the most stupid human being to ever walk upright. Dont hear enough Brandon & Wolvie. I dont listen to 680 very much, but it is appalling that flagship station does such a lousy job promoting the team. They are all idiots on that station. They are like a bunch of monkeys tried to f–k a football.

World Be Free

March 4th, 2010
10:46 am

DWTOO / Biltong
I really enjoy your collective inputs to this blog. Like you, I am ticked at the lack of sports coverage for the Thrashers. The only positive thing I can say about the lack of coverage is at least we don’t have to deal with inaccurate information! Let’s face it, most of the sports writers and sports talk people in this town don’t know sports. They are cheerleaders for the sports that sell, like Georgia football. Not that I am against GA football, but there is more out there! So the fact that they don’t talk hockey is a blessing. All would do is spread their ignorence to the ice, which would make it even worse!

Which brings us to the question-where would we be without Rawhide?

rob

March 4th, 2010
10:53 am

Why did anyone actually waste time listening to an AM sports show here in Atlanta? I have yet to see ANY serious sports talk shows or writers here when it comes to hockey, so you know what? F them. They know not what they talk about and I wouldn’t give them my time to waste listening. Vivs, sometimes Schultz write something, but is there ever more than 1 page (and usually not even close to THAT) dedicated to hockey here? NO. BFD, they don’t know what they are missing out on, and the ASG is too stupid to market the best live sport on the planet. This isn’t a sports town, plain and simple. Too spread out and too many folks unwilling to change their ex-hometown allegiance(I was one of those). BUT, I am glad hockey is here and I can take in a live game when I can afford to (both from a time and money standpoint) because I really do enjoy the game and the atmosphere there.

Stat Man

March 4th, 2010
10:54 am

Well, unless WSB starts loving on the Thrashers, who cares if any other radio station chimes in?

It would be different if you could pick any other station up outside the perimeter………….

It’s just sad that I can pick up the Cleveland Cavs game on AM radio in Gwinnett county, but not the Hawks or Thrashers.

SAD

Smoothie

March 4th, 2010
10:55 am

Good news: Tampa is at Washington tonite; the Rangers get to host Pittsburgh; Montreal gets to travel across country to play San Jose

Bad news: Boston gets to slap around Toronto at TD Ameritrade or whatever their aren is called while we host a team that has give us nothing but fits this season. Win tonite though and we get help from the better teams tonite, and we may very well be the 8 seed behind BOS after its all said and done.

How do we break this 4 game losing streak against the Islanders?

– aggressive forecheck and pressure on NY’s D-men
– Rollo doesn’t like to be crowded so crash the net hard!
– support Moose and clear all rebounds cuz NYI will get their shots
– figure out a way to stop Matt Moulson??? WTF?
– score more goals than the Islanders…just checkin’ to see if anyone is actually reading this!! :-)

Smoothie

March 4th, 2010
11:06 am

From Isles’ blog on SBNation: “On the heels of coming up empty on Trade Deadline Day — when every fan hopes for the tooth fairy to drop by with undeserved gifts — the Islanders also learn that Andrew MacDonald is out 4-6 weeks with a broken foot (aka “The Sutton”) and oft-injured Trent Hunter returned from the Olympic break to promptly hurt his quad and “upper body,” shelving himself for 1-2 weeks.”

Well, I guess that helps…think Trent Hunter usually plays well vs. us.

BlueSpark

March 4th, 2010
11:09 am

The only way we’re going to stop Moulson is if someone goons it up on him McSorley-style. Which I am not advocating, mind you. But we DO have 15 forwards now…

Russian

March 4th, 2010
11:10 am

I have no IDEA who is going to play today.
We have 15 forwards. I like to see a lines:
Little-Antro-Bergi (they are playing OK, do not break it)
Kane-Slater-Armi (Let’s keep together also)
Maks-Pever-White/Slava/MacArthur (I do not know. I like to see new guy, but it is not chemistry)
Tromb-Reason-Arti/Bolt
Any way somebody will sit.
I heard that Moose will be in net. Good call.
Any way I am going to Phillips arena today and bring 5 friends. I hope we win this game.

Dwayne

March 4th, 2010
11:10 am

How do we break this 4 game losing streak against the Islanders?
Maybe Chelios can give anyone who will listen a call on how to stop Mighty Matt!!

Dwayne

March 4th, 2010
11:13 am

Here is another novel idea…
Play hard for 60 minutes?

Red Light

March 4th, 2010
11:13 am

Of course Smoothie. Thanks for pointing out that we need to score more goals than the opponent. LOL

My thoughts on the Kozlov matter and you might not like them!

Like any NHL player, particularly one who has won the Cup and tallied 70 points or more six times, Kozlov wanted and wants more ice time. His ice time has gone down as younger players have moved in and Anderson’s penchant for using 3-4 lines limits Kozlov’s effectiveness. Lets keep in mind his career numbers in Atlanta. He is second in goals, power play goals, game-winning goals, points, games, assists, shots and his plus/minus rating is +45 better than Kovalchuk’s was when he was here. The team lost a lot of one-goal games earlier in the year, and I’ll chalk up his comments as those made out of frustration.

While many think of him as a PP specialist, his points distribution in Atlanta is 181 PP points and 228 points at even strength, and he led the team with 46 ES points the season after the lockout. His ice time this year is a career low at 15:26.

Sure, he’s whining because he isn’t playing. You come to the rink, you want to play don’t you? No, I don’t think he handled it well and would have preferred that he kept his mouth shut, but lets not forget what he has done here. He’s had a pretty good career for a team that has finished in the top-8 in its conference just once during his tenure.

Yes, I know his number benefited from playing with Kovy, Heatley and Hossa while they were here, and he hasn’t performed up to his capabilities this year. He averages 2.4 shots per game during his career and his shooting percentage has always been solid until this year. In fact, it’s the first time it has been under 10.5.

I’m sure he would have liked to duplicate his 26-50-76 season from a year ago and probably still feels he can contribute. Willing to cut him some slack but since he has only played in two games since Jan. 21, I’m not sure any of this is much of an issue since the addition of Arty and MacArthur means Kozzie’s contributions will be even more minimal.

This isn’t a DeAngelo Hall thing!