Thrashers in grave danger of crash landing in Lotterypickville…again

Like a doomed airplane spinning out of control due to its pilot and co-pilot becoming sick to the state of unconsciousness after eating tainted fish, the Atlanta Thrashers have fallen from the lofty altitude of playoff contention and are in grave danger of crash-landing into Lotterypickville.

Ah, Lotterypickville… It’s a rough place, the seediest dive on the wharf. Populated with every reject and cutthroat from Bombay to Calcutta. It’s worse than Detroit.

Most NHL franchises avoid this place at any cost. But not the Thrashers…they actually have a P.O. Box in the local post office.

Just a week and a half ago the Thrashers were riding a 4-0-2 wave after a 6-3 win over then Islanders on March 4, were resting in the 8th and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 66 points and many were telling me that surely they were ready to make a run at the post-season.

Well, it appears they weren’t…and don’t call me Shirley!

Since that time Atlanta has gone 0-5-1, coming just shy of cracking open a Thrasherville Six-Pack by at least taking Phoenix to a shootout before losing their sixth straight. In doing so, they’ve sunk into 11th place in the east with but 67 points and only six teams in the league have gathered fewer…Edmonton, Toronto, Columbus, Carolina, the Islanders and Florida. However, the Panthers are but a point in back of the Thrashers while New York and the CBJs are two behind…and Columbus plays the Oilers tonight.

I was asked recently by a friend of mine how it felt to be a Thrashers fan recently. My response…” Do you know what it’s like to fall in the mud and get kicked… in the head… with an iron boot? Of course you don’t, no one does. It never happens. Sorry, that’s a dumb question… skip that”.

Anyway…all this means, of course, is that we in Thrasherville may once again be looking at our logo on a certain amount of draft pick lottery ping-pong balls shortly after this campaign comes to an end. Depending on how they drop, we’ll begin anew the time-honored tradition in these parts of discussing just who the Thrashers should select with that early draft pick when the 30 NHL teams gather in L.A. on June 25.

But I say, why wait…let’s get the ball rolling right now.

Here is a list of the top five prospects available in the draft as ranked by TSN.com back in September 2009. Tell me what you can make of this. I mean, besides a hat or a brooch or pterodactyl…

Taylor Hall: 6’-1”, 185 pound Canadian left wing playing currently for the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires.

TSN Insider’s Take: Prior to the 2009 draft, several NHL scouts told me that if Taylor Hall were eligible they would take the Kingston, Ont., native ahead of John Tavares, Victor Hedman or Matt Duchene. Hall’s forte is as a tenacious goal-scorer who does everything at a high speed. He’s a dynamic game-breaker who is an excellent bet to be on Canada’s national junior team this year.

Cam Fowler: 6’-2”, 190 pound US defenseman playing currently for the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires.

TSN Insider’s Take: The scouts often refer to the young American as the “total package.” He has size, speed and skill and can be a force at both ends of the ice. Originally drafted by the Kitchener Rangers, the graduate of the U.S. national development program went back into the OHL draft when he didn’t report to Kitchener, only to be selected by Windsor, where he’s playing this season.

Tyler Seguin: 6’-1”, 186 pound Canadian centerman playing currently for the OHL Plymouth Whalers.

TSN Insider’s Take: I watched him play minor hockey in his very early years in Whitby. Along the way, he moved to Brampton, Ont., and the Plymouth Whaler centre has now fully blossomed as an elite offensive force who looks like a lock to be a top five pick in this draft. He’s probably viewed more as a playmaker than a goal scorer but he has an outstanding shot. Playing on a line with John McFarland and Tyler Toffoli, Seguin was outstanding at the U-18 tourney in August in the Czech Republic. Scouts raved about his play and he may have done enough there to get an invite to Canada’s final national junior camp in December.

Kirill Kabanov: 6’-3”, 176 pound Russian right wing currently playing for the KHL’s Spartak Moscow.

TSN Insider’s Take: The Russian, who is awaiting the transfer paperwork to allow him to play for the Moncton Wildcats of the Quebec League, is a highly-skilled, offensive minded lanky centre. Whether he falls victim to the so-called “Russian factor” remains to be seen, because his skills are elite and he’s one of several Russians this year who have Top 10 potential. He was, however, shut down by his future Moncton teammate Brandon Gormley in the U-18 championship game.

Brett Connolly: 6’-1”, 153 pound Canadian right wing currently playing for the WHL’s Prince George Cougars.

TSN Insider’s Take: Injury limited his effectiveness for Canada at the U-18 tourney in August – he got hurt in the first game, sat out the next two before dressing for the gold-medal game — but his excellent production for Prince George in the WHL last year has demonstrated he’s a smooth and polished offensive performer who plays the game with a great deal of confidence.

Here’s a link to the site if you care to review and discuss those further down the list.

Elsewhere, the NHL Scouting Bureau’s midterm rankings show Hall, Seguin, Fowler and Connolly as the top North American skating prospects while Mikael Granlund…a 5’-10”, 176 pound Finnish centerman tops their list of Euopean skaters.

There is also a list of top goaltending prospects at the NHL Scouting Bureau, but if the Thrashers waste another top pick on a goalie like they did in 2002, I think I just might shout out at the person responsible for such a decision, “Jive ass dude don’t got no brains no-how”!

OK, you all chew on this for a while…seeing that it’s better for you than the fish served on flight 2-0-9’er from Los Angeles to Chicago. Meanwhile, I’ll be be doing some light reading….a couple leaflets titled ”Famous Thrashers Playoff Legends” and “How to Succeed as an NHL GM” by Don Waddell.

Today’s blog entry is dedicated in memory of Peter Graves and his portrayal of Capt. Oveur in the classic cinema comedy “Airplane”.

136 comments Add your comment

Everett

March 15th, 2010
2:12 pm

At least if we do hit the lottery pick, it adds to the fun of the draft party. Trying to be optimistic…

Bob

March 15th, 2010
2:14 pm

Yep, it’s that time again, let’s hope for the lottery pick! Hall could be our top line LW next year (don’t laugh).

Is Connolly’s weight correct as listed? We’re gonna have to buy that kid a sandwich if he comes to town.

Netminder

March 15th, 2010
2:16 pm

Sad state of affairs that once again we are talking about who we are going to draft. I don’t see how the Thrashers can keep DW for another season. We need to draft an American or a Canadian. I am tired of the Europeans/Russians.

Intro: I am one of the blog “Lurkers” from the front row of 219. My wife and I display our Blueland flag proudly throughout the year.

R. Stroz

March 15th, 2010
2:17 pm

Most NHL franchises avoid this place at any cost. But not the Thrashers…they actually have a P.O. Box in the local post office.

What do you mean P.O. Box?

The Thrashers have their own ZIP CODE.

Darren

March 15th, 2010
2:21 pm

That photo caption is brutally honest, I must say.

Begin Tankapalooza 2010, I guess…

J.B.

March 15th, 2010
2:22 pm

The captions on the Airplane! screen grabs had me laughing out loud in the office. Thanks for that Bill.

TeddyIceTime

March 15th, 2010
2:29 pm

Good Ole’ DW will be here until the trucks back up to Philips and takes the Thrashers north to Canada….
This team is not even worth the blog time anymore….from the owners to the management to the coaches to the players — this team is the worst in the history of Atlanta sports. The Thrash is even worse than the 70’s version of the Braves.
I feel sorry for Bogo, Kane and Moose…the rest of the team just does not seem to be able to whip their rears…
Can a Zamboni be converted into a paving machine? Maybe, the City of Atlanta can buy the Thrashers bonis and pave over potholes in downtown after the team heads to Canada….
Good bye forever hockey in the South.

TableHockey

March 15th, 2010
2:31 pm

If the lottery gods smile on Atlanta the pick would have to be Hall or Seguin. Either would be a great addition but I think Hall will be a special player. Though you would have him and Kane as left wingers. Wonder if one could move to center or right?

While it stinks to find ourselves in this position again I think I am okay with it. If we were to make it to the post-season I do believe this team would finally notch one in the post season W column but I don’t think they have what it takes to get out of the first round.

Would love this to be DW’s swan song but based on what I heard coming out of the STH town hall that is not going to happen. I imagine JA is done in Atlanta. Not sure if his system won’t work in the big leagues or if there is another issue but this team should have made the post-season (on paper anyways and given how weak the EC is).

It looks to be a pretty thin UFA market this summer and with the departure of Ilya we will probably have to overpay whomever we pick up (much like the summer after Hossa left). Probably better for the team if we get a good draft pick.

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
2:41 pm

Oh no! Did Don Waddell just give John Anderson the proverbial kiss of death???

TableHockey

March 15th, 2010
2:46 pm

I believe so Rawhide.

MB

March 15th, 2010
2:50 pm

Well done on the Graves tribute/”Airplane” references. Many of us also remember him well for his work in “Mission: Impossible” back when Tom Cruise was in diapers…oh wait, he’s still in diapers.

Following up on a thread from the last blog, several were discussing what effect(s) if any would be felt if individual STHs did not renew, with comments along the lines that the ASG focuses more on corporate and club section STHs.

I managed tickets for a previous company several years ago. We had combined Thrashers and Hawks season tickets, along with first crack at other Philips events (concerts, circus, etc.). Back then those ran about $50,000. As the economy started to tighten and revenues dropped, we had to cut costs, and that subscription was an easy candidate for the chopping block once it came time for renewal. In the years since, the economy has gotten tougher and I have to guess that numerous other companies dropped their tickets…hard to justify keeping them when you’re reducing staff (and it was pretty easy for us to determine that those seats had relatively little with our ability to attract and/or retain customers).

While I think it’s fair to say that the ASG does place a higher value (and rightfully so) on corporate accounts than individual accounts, I also think it’s fair to say that they need every source of revenue they can get (even with the reduction in salary costs we’ve seen thus far this year…with more in the pipeline). Based on their reported responses of the past season + (THMs, more competitive package pricing, more STH benefits), it sounds like the departure of STHs has caught their attention and will continue to do so.

Long-winded way of saying to the STHs, as you look at your stack of mail and see that renewal package on the counter, that you DO have the ability to have an influence on the organization (in direct correlation to the dollar value of your season ticket package).

So, I’d be interested to know, and maybe Rawhide could post a poll, IF you have renewed or plan on doing so, what is your primary reason for renewing? I thought of numerous possibilities, but I’m sure there are many more (and no, “I love hockey” isn’t one…safe to assume that we all love hockey here).
- the enjoyment I receive from watching NHL hockey is well worth the relatively minor investment
- we lost hockey once here already, and I don’t want to be part of the reason it leaves again
- when and if we ever win the Cup, I want to be able to say I’ve been a STH from day one
- over the years I’ve been able to improve my seats and I don’t want to lose them
- I think the club is finally turning the corner and better days are ahead
- why deprive myself of live NHL hockey when I don’t think a “boycott” will have any effect
- that wacky J-Bird just cracks me up!

World Be Free

March 15th, 2010
2:56 pm

If you are old enough to remember-
Peter Graves and Leslie Neilsen were serious actors up until the release of Airplane! Neilsen did some MASH episodes, but for the most part he was a heavy. I was shocked to see them in slapstick roles. Will enver forget the “Jaws” music at the beginning when i saw this moving in the theater.

Bill-on Kane
Which is why he may be captain someday, assuming he stays that long.

I really thought we would be over the hump this year. Now we are moving back to the lottery. Ugh!

Netminder

March 15th, 2010
3:00 pm

I have not renewed yet however I will be.

These reasons in this order:
- the enjoyment I receive from watching NHL hockey is well worth the relatively minor investment
- we lost hockey once here already, and I don’t want to be part of the reason it leaves again
- when and if we ever win the Cup, I want to be able to say I’ve been a STH from day one
- over the years I’ve been able to improve my seats and I don’t want to lose them

Plus
-

Alan R.

March 15th, 2010
3:03 pm

So… anyone know if D-Wad has ever been inside a Turkish prison?

Netminder

March 15th, 2010
3:03 pm

User error — finish below

Plus:
- I want to be there the FULL year they finally turn things around
- I do not care about other atlanta sports

MB

March 15th, 2010
3:05 pm

Alan R., he must have been…how else would he know how to torture us in this manner?

R. Stroz

March 15th, 2010
3:08 pm

Netminder – Please add the following:

- the content of the Blue Crew outfits.

J.B.

March 15th, 2010
3:09 pm

R. Stroz – Please add the following:

– or lack thereof

Netminder

March 15th, 2010
3:12 pm

R. Stroz and J.B. – I agree – fortunately the Ice Girls do spend a ton of time in front of my seats making up for the bad games that frequent Blueland.

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
3:14 pm

WBF – Leslie Neilson was also the captain in the orginal Poseidon Adventure. Still cracks me up when I see that movie now. I keep expecting something like…

“A tidal wave…what is it sir”?

“It’s a big wall of water…but that’s not important right now”.

Netminder – Good to finally have you on board. Say “hi” to the lovely Mrs. Netminder for me, please.

Everette – Always good to try to find the positives, indeed.

Alan R.

March 15th, 2010
3:15 pm

Thrashers Fans: Mofo butter layin’ me to da’ bone! Jackin’ me up… tight me!
D-Wad: I’m sorry, I don’t understand.

Jeff

March 15th, 2010
3:21 pm

Funny blog!

By the way, STH since Day 1 (though I dropped to a 13 package this season). Not renewing at all…period. If the francise doesn’t want to pay for good players, at least manage the team in such a way that you make the most with less (see Nashville and, usually, Carolina). Since that is obviously not happening either, they are not getting any more of my $$$, other than a game or two. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, yet expecting different results. I’ve had enough insanity to last for a while, thank you Don Waddell.

Thrashers Traded Me

March 15th, 2010
3:28 pm

Need to trade Bogo and Kane. They suck.

DWTOO

March 15th, 2010
3:36 pm

There was an NPR interivew w/Peter Graves today and he was commenting on how hard it was to play the role straight.

“What’s our Vector, Victor” And please forgive me earlier transgression calling joey – billy.

Let’s not talk lottery pick yet. The fat lady’s warming up, but, we’re still hanging in there.

DWTOO

March 15th, 2010
3:39 pm

And don’t forget: “Roger, Roger”. Wonder how may takes they had to do to get that cockpit scene right.

Mission Impossible the TV series was still better. recent movies have ruined the classics. Just look at The Day the Earth Stood Still. The need to unleash Gort on Hollywood.

Ken

March 15th, 2010
3:41 pm

What is the use? whoever they draft will either be a huge bust, injured or leave after we can’t sign them. what’s the point. We are the Pittsburgh Pirates of the NHL

The Fat Lady

March 15th, 2010
3:41 pm

Oh DWTOO, dah-ling…I’ve been here for quite a while now. It’s only a matter of time before the curtain goes up for me. Certainly it has already come down on the Thrashers this season.

La-la-LA-LA-LA-la-laaaaaaa….

da trashers ain't real hockey

March 15th, 2010
3:44 pm

The Trashers don’t just have a P O box in Lotterypickville, they must own a timeshare there, since it seems that they spend time there every year! I’ve seen Taylor Hall, Cam Fowler and Tyler Seguin play in person and they are indeed the real deal, which of course means that the Trash will take the Russian. The Trashers are the NHL version of the LA Clippers, so continuously bad, that you’d almost wonder if it was on purpose.

j nes

March 15th, 2010
3:48 pm

DWTOO-the fat lady is not warming up. She is cooling down from her second curtain call last season.

j nes

March 15th, 2010
3:58 pm

You know how you hear stories about people having relationships so bad it turns them gay. I think I am in danger of the sports equivalent-I am losing my life-long interest in hockey. Thanks ASG/Don Waddell. Maybe I will start watching NASCAR or something-those rednecks seem to reckon it’s dang good entertainment.

BubbaDaStickman

March 15th, 2010
4:02 pm

D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! D-Wad must GO! etc………………

World Be Free

March 15th, 2010
4:13 pm

Rawhide-won’t it be great if Leslie remade his 5 minute part from Posidin? That’s back when he was a stiff.

Pavs blew his chance to win the game in the shootout-he was beat with the same move that beat LaBarbara on hte previous play! Didn’t he learn? Pavs is not a number one goalie, not with this team’s defensive makeup.

FYI- I caught a lottery T-shirt at lasts night’s game. What does that mean?

DWTOO-the fat lady’s eating her cheeseburger and Louie Anderson-size mega fry. She’ll be warming up soon…..

minus whale

March 15th, 2010
4:19 pm

whoa! Rawhide, did you commit a huge minus whale (you know, when you misunderstand something like “might as well” to be “minus whale” ) did you really type title wave???? you know it’s a “tidal wave” right ?? tidal as in tide…. LOL. NEway, why should we talk about next season since there won’t be one (in atlanta anywayz) j/k, philips arena needs to thrashers or else the philips company can break their contract and that means the loss of a lot of money. srsly though, why all the indian stuff (from bombay to calcutta)? whazup wit dat?

Falconsforlife

March 15th, 2010
4:20 pm

Fire Waddell.

I will not attend another game until he is gone.

Kevin

March 15th, 2010
4:24 pm

Can we trade Tody E. and move up? I would love to get someone who isn’t afraid to shoot to add to our team that is struggling to score. We was all by himself in the slot with the puck in a tie game against PHX and passed. WTF!

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
4:26 pm

minus whale – HA! Indeed I did…just fixed it.

Rawhide-won’t it be great if Leslie remade his 5 minute part from Posidin? That’s back when he was a stiff.

WBF - Remember this line of Neilson’s from the Poseidon Adventure?…”You arrogant bastard…you’ve killed us all”

I wonder if that is anything like what Bob Hartley told Waddell the night he traded Zhitnik for Coburn. :lol:

Marketing Master Plan

March 15th, 2010
4:34 pm

Since Philips has intimated that they would would like out of the naming rights contract, there is this new retail company in town called “The Dump”, maybe they could buy the naming rights to Philips Arena.

Smoothie

March 15th, 2010
4:38 pm

WBF – seriously, you would think practicing and watching Moose play, he would know a poke-check is quite effective on that play. Better than falling on your ass backwards with your pants on the ice.

Does anyone here seriously think we have more than 5,000 current STH? I would think that’s a pretty generous figure actually based on weeknight attendance figures. When they announce 10 – 11 k in the stands, it usually looks like there are 5 to 6 k at most.

If economic factors are truly at play this year and the ASG is that hard up to make money all of a sudden, then y’all should get your wish with respect to our esteemed GM (lol). But I doubt anything will happen until this ownership mess is completely resolved.

If you are a qualified candidate to replace Waddell with a reputed track record, would you honestly consider coming to work for the ASG as long as the specter of the Belkin debacle still looms large over your head as the primary hockey club executive?? Puuhhhleeease.

PensFan

March 15th, 2010
4:40 pm

Can I thank Wadell for DuPuis? The guy is playing the best of all our wingers this year. He is actually playing better than Colby. Great on the penalty kill and his hustle from end to end is just great. It’s too bad he is not the most accurate shot. Still, he has 17 or so goals.

Sean Grace

March 15th, 2010
4:49 pm

Well done Sir!

World Be Free

March 15th, 2010
4:54 pm

Smoothie-I coulda done better than Pavs on that shootout goal-that’s 1 point lost over that stupid play.

Rawhide-check out Leslie Neilsen in “Forbidden Planet” from 1956, as Captain JJ Adams. Sssooooo campy, typical 50’s sci-fi garbage. He came a long way. Neilsen is actually older than peter Graves, turned 84 last month.

Lou

March 15th, 2010
5:54 pm

I have been a loyal Thrashers fan since they began play here and average seeing 20 games a year. They were awful against the Rangers Friday, and the arena had the feel of a pre-season game. If I performed in my job like Don Waddell does in his, I wouldn’t be allowed to keep mine. His job is putting a quality team on the ice and he isn’t doing that. People won’t continue to pay 75 dollars and up for lower level seats for this product. The ownership is more committed to basketball. Trust me, this team will be playing somewhere else in a few years. Atlanta won’t support this product. The owners of this team missed a great opportunity years ago when this team was in the playoffs of building on that but they chose not to.

Sage of Bluesland

March 15th, 2010
6:11 pm

Great blog, Rawhide–one of the most creative I’ve seen. I hope you don’t waffle back into the Waddell camp.

So, don’t listen to the BullSmoothies of the world…you should know better and appear wiser than that…but, the sheep have the emotional allure which pulls at the heartstrings…It’s just, quite simply, not backed up by fact or logic…

Waddell must go. I’ve never seen such egregious incompetence actually be ‘rewarded’ every year…and defended by the ignorant…

Someone asked for a turning point in the Thrashers lifetime a blog or two back–and my first thought would have been the Heatley-accident, as that was extremely traumatic. However, I think the choice isn’t even close anymore: the initial hiring of the exact wrong at the inception of operations. Heatley would have been gone early, as well–as his actions in Ottawa have proven it. He would have been absolutely no different than Hossa and Kovalchuk–and would have left as soon as he humanly could.

We were doomed from the start with Waddell at the helm. His hiring was bad enough–but his continued employment has rotted the entire foundation with disastrous effect…

Savannah Blueland Fan

March 15th, 2010
6:17 pm

That’s the draft pool to pick from? 4 North Americans and one Russian? Bet you a dollar to a doughnut they’ll pick the Russian. Getting quite sick of them myself. With the exception of Antropov (who technically isn’t Russian). As bad as the Thrashers have been lately, he seems to hustle and play hard. He should be named team captain next year (because this one is done as far as I’m concerned).

Talk of the Poseidon Adventure harks me back to my college days when we would sit around and have profound discussions about that movie and its implication of modern day organized religion vs humanism. The fallen preacher saving the gang while the rest followed the priest to a certain death. But then the buzz would wear off for us and we would just get the munchies.

BG33Brown

March 15th, 2010
6:26 pm

Regarding lotterypickville. I’d rather spend a few years there than be the Maple Leafs/Panthers that never make the playoffs but are always too close to end up with a great top 4 pick.

Plus, maybe if we lose more and more games down the strecth Levenson, will finally see the incompetence of the SOB GM and fire him.

Red Light

March 15th, 2010
6:51 pm

Trade the two first-round picks, Bogosian and Bergfors for the Caps’ Nicklas Backstrom. Or, trade the two first-rounders for Devin Setoguchi, David Perron or Ryan Kessler, all of whom are restricted free agents.

There have been around 40 contract extensions negotiated since July 1, and the only one extended by Waddell was for Peverley.

Whitesnake Reference: “An’ here I go again on my own, Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known”

Robert

March 15th, 2010
7:02 pm

Players – Coach – GM – Owner (whoever it is at the moment) – where do you atart? I say pack the whole lot of them north, wait a few years, and start over. It just isn’t worth the constant disappointment.

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
7:11 pm

DWTOO & ben, I certainly welcome a diversity of opinion regarding the defining moment of failure for this franchise under Waddell. I also gave some thought to the Heatley crash. But let me tell why I definitively rejected that as my choice.

1. We traded Heatley for Hossa and deVries. With them, we won a division and made the playoffs. It seemed to be a relatively good exchange for Heatley. Dan Snyder was a 10 goal-per-season player. That’s not impossible to replace.

2. Many years and much opportunity later, the crash is but a distant memory. Most of the today’s Thrashers never met Dan Snyder to know him and miss him.

3. Had Dany Heatley been forced to stay and play, I fear what happened in Ottawa would have happened here. Namely, that Heatley would have said, after seasons of losing, “I’m not being properly utilized. I want to be traded.” And even if that didn’t work, he’d just refuse to re-sign here, once he reached UFA status.

There’s no doubt in my mind that the Heatley crash was something terrible for this team and its fans. But I’d counter-argue that by 2006, Waddell had assembled a team capable of making the playoffs and winning a round of playoffs. Imagine if Kari Lehtonen had been healthy? And Pasi Nurminen hadn’t blown out his knee. There would be no need for Steve Shields, Michael Garnett, Adam Berkhoel, or Mike Dunham. It would have been Nurminen and Lehtonen. Plus, we had Bondra. Holik was at his youngest point as a Thrasher, and Holik was signed, in my opinion, for his playoff resume, not his regular season one. Mellanby would have provided the senior leadership, as Captain.

Here are some of the other times I considered, before deciding on April 2007, standing pat. I gave some weight to the 2002 Draft. I saw no need for drafting a goalie who would take 5 years to develop at that juncture. To me, that reflected a fundamental error in judgement, at a critical time in the evolution of the franchise. There are precisely two (2) scenarios in which I would have permitted the Lehtonen draft, as a fan or owner. One, if we were flat broke, and our financial outlook wasn’t any better for the coming seasons, such that we couldn’t afford a goalie out on the open market. And two, that the plan was to snare a Tier I goalie out on the market, but that we’d only sign that goalie for 3-4 years. And just as the Tier I free agent goalie’s contract was expiring, Kari Lehtonen would be developed to the point where he could step in as the new #1 goaltender. But I’m not particularly buying either scenario there. To me, drafting a goalie in 2002 didn’t make any sense. And it hamstrung the franchise for years.

I also considered the 2008 offseason, where we couldn’t come to terms with Hossa. That was a severe blow to the future of the franchise. Not that losing Marc Savard wasn’t. In fact, that’s where I’d headed next. Letting Marc Savard walk for nothing may have been a necessary risk to take, but … to me … having Marc disinterested in staying was cause for MAJOR CONCERN. Marc was on the NHL leaderboard for assists. His winger was Ilya Kovalchuk. And yet, Savvy didn’t want to stay here? That’s a very telling and disturbing sign. It was the snowball that created the avalanche of departures.

But still, to me, anyway … the UNCONSCIENABLE ACT … was standing pat, doing AB-SO-LUTELY NUTHIN after the playoff sweep. Shaking my head, in disbelief. I couldn’t believe that THAAAAT was the response. No Hartley fired. No Waddell fired. No Dan Marr fired. It was … theatre of the absurd.

And I just can’t and won’t accept that … tax liabilities being an act of SERENDIPITY for the ownership … is what keeps Waddell here. Someone once wrote a book called, “Useful Idiots.” I wish I could recall the author’s name. But Waddell very well may be such a “useful idiot” to the ownership. The most distasteful thing of all, however, is dismissing ANY fan, I repeat ANY FAN, because they don’t sit along the glass, at $200 a seat. Or $150 a seat. Or $125 a seat.

To me, being a GOOD FAN … AT PHILIPS ARENA … has EV-ERY-THING to do with how LOUD and how INVOLVED you are with the action. It has NOTHING to do with HOW MUCH MONEY YOU PAID FOR YOUR SEAT. If you paid $175 for that seat, but you’re silent as a church mouse during games, you take YOUR NAME right out of the hopper for the 7th man award. You didn’t do ANYTHING but overpay for a seat. And that fan, sitting in section 413, screaming his or hear head off, is the one that matters. Ohh, not to ownership. But to the players on the ice, seeking inspiration. That’s what the players say, anyways. When you ask a player, “what do you want from a fan?” They don’t say, “for them to PAY A LOT for their seats.” They say, “We want the fans to be loud and to give us the edge. We want a hostile environment for the opposition.” It’s true. That’s what they say. So, paying a lot for a seat, only to wear white gloves, to politely clap, using doiles, isn’t cutting it. Try tennis, instead.

In my decade of experience at Philips Arena, I have NEH-VERR, EV-ERRRR heard the SUITES chant, “Let’s go Thrashers!” NEVER. EVER. EVERRRRR. Please do explain it. And yet, that’s the MONEY that counts??? Pfft. Well, that’s economics for you. And it’s also why you never want businessmen or corporations running your team. They just … DON’T CARE. When the truth I want to see as REALITY is … “every fan, even the $10 seat fan, should MATTER to ownership.” Every last one. Every person is another voice … to cheer on the Thrashers and to be part of the experience. It’s a shame, really, that ownership doesn’t see it that way. There are 18,545 seats at Blueland. If I were the owner, I’d want each and every seat cheering. Just like the suites, I’ve never heard an empty seat cheer.

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
7:18 pm

Hold on to your hats, folks. The #14 and #15 seeds out west, are CLASHING tonight!! It’s Edmonton vs. Columbus. Sadly, even if the Oilers win, they’re going to get the #1 overall pick, barring something very unnatural occuring in the Draft Day hopper. Hey, don’t say never. We remember 2001, when Tampa Bay was supposed to pick 1st overall. Atlanta won the draft, and selected some Russian fellow or other. Rumor has it, the guy would later go on to score 40 goals a season for six years. But who would care about that??

Right. So, how about 2007, when Philadelphia finished DEAD LAST, but did not get to pick 1st overall. Remember who won the lottery draft? That’s right, the team that was supposed to pick 5th overall, the Chicago Blackhawks. They took some kid named Kane. Word is, he’s fond of dimes as his favorite form of currency.

I don’t have a problem with Atlanta in the lottery draft. They’re not making the playoffs. So, what would it hurt to get a higher pick? I’m not saying, “fold like Superman on laundry day.” What I am saying is, “let’s not cry after every loss in a lost season.”

BG33Brown

March 15th, 2010
7:22 pm

DIRECT TV AND VERSUS FINALLY WORKED IT OUT!!! Thank God, I was getting really worried about missing playoff hockey.

Stat Man

March 15th, 2010
7:30 pm

Relatives from Kansas in town – I made the mistake of buying 5 tickets to Thursday’s game against Ottawa back after the 4-0-2 stretch.

They are going to wonder why the hell I hate them so much!

So Tanksters, I mean Thrashers – begin your final push to the lottery Friday please and give me a decent going away (no not the team) memory Thursday!

BTW – The Thrashers aren’t going anywhere if the owners insist DW comes with the team, so quit bashing D-Wad, he’s truly the only reason the team is still in town!

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
7:30 pm

Cam Fowler is my pick! Let’s git ‘em!!

Keith

March 15th, 2010
7:41 pm

Time to ship them out of Atlanta. Nobody cares. I would love to know what the radio and TV ratings are. I bet literally less then 100 people, out of 5.5 million, actually listen to games on the radio while driving.

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
8:01 pm

Sage, I hadn’t thought of it in those terms. But yes, I must correct myself. The defining moment of failure for the organization can be called, “the hiring of Don Waddell.” I keep examining the greatest moment of his failures. When really, I should have been focused on what ownership did. They HIRED him.

Now, I suppose … they hired him with intentions of loading up via the lottery draft. And certainly, Waddell did place the team in the lottery draft for them. But, he was expected to make the MOST of it. The L. Ustrunul? Luke Sellars? Zdenek Blatny? Derek MacKenzie? Ilya Nikulin? Brian Sipotz? Then the Hockey Gods give us a gift, post lockout, with an 8th overall pick. Waddell passes on Setoguch, M. Staal, Anze Kopitar, in favor of Alex Bourret, at #16? Wow.

Sage, I suspect you’re correct. The greatest moment of failure was the hiring and non-firing of Don Waddell.

Lew 39

March 15th, 2010
8:23 pm

I guess the real question is…..
How many five year plans will we go through before we make the playoffs again (not winnig a game, just making it)

I already renewed my season tickets for next year, God this is fun.

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
8:24 pm

Sage – Thank you for the kind words…I’m glad you and other readers enjoyed it. But if I can pick at one small nit with ya…I don’t think I’ve ever “waffled” into the Waddel camp. There have been certain moves he’s made recently…signing Afiogenov and Antropov, to name a couple…that I’ve liked and have said so. That’s just in the name of fairness.

However, to your point about DW’s hiring as the “greatest failure”…it’s hard to argue with the total picture of ineptitude and failure, that’s for sure, and as such I…like Brendan…agree.

But I would also like to suggest that the purchace of the team by The Great Octocluster be placed into consideration as well. What they have done to this franchise and the future of NHL hockey in this city is an absolute disgrace.

Lew39 – Here’s a suggestion for you. Call your ticket rep. Ask him if DW is still GM. When the voice on the other end of the phone says, “Yes”…then tell them to call you when he isn’t.

But do it every day…every day.

If they stop taking your calls…call the main number. Ask for a ticket rep. Start again…

If all STHs did this…or the ones that are left who “get it”…it would send quite a message.

Lou – That goes for you too.

LAC

March 15th, 2010
8:36 pm

Strange you would show a shot from Airplane with Peter Graves… He Passed Away Today.

Puckhead

March 15th, 2010
8:51 pm

Red Light – The team didn’t offer an extension to Peverley – Rich and his agent approached the team with the deal that was too good to for the the team to say no.

Scotty

March 15th, 2010
8:51 pm

pssssttt…..LAC, look at the bottom of the blog.

World Be Free

March 15th, 2010
9:16 pm

I get a kick out the IDIOTS that come on the blog and state thet only way to remedy the situation is to move the Thrashers from Atlanta.

Really effin smart. Just like the Canadian media sez-it’s all the fans fault.

“When can you land this plane? I can’t tell. You can tell me, I’m a doctor. No, I can’t tell, fog is socked in all the way to Chicago”. Nobody has talked about Johnny from Airplane! the bald guy who worked in the tower that had some of the best lines in the movie. “Your husband’s unconscious-just like Gerald Ford”.

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
9:21 pm

WBFahem… “Tell me what you can make of this. I mean, besides a hat or a brooch or pterodactyl…”

Just sayin’…

I persnally like Johnny’s beratement of Captain Oveur’s wife, “…and where did you get that dress? And those shoes?”

bugman

March 15th, 2010
9:22 pm

I hafta agree with Smoothie:

If ASG fired D-Wad tomorrow, who in their right mind would want to come work for these clowns? Wouldn’t it be D-Wad 102?!

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
9:30 pm

bugman & Smoothie – This is just me talkin’…but what about one Mr. Dudley? He’s under contract and he’s done the job before. I would think if offered, he’d accept.

Even if not, I’m sure there are 29 asst. GMs that would like a crack at it.

I know it’s easy to say “Oh who would come here”. The Great Octocluster has messed this up beyond measure. But the fear of possible failure that comes with making a change is no excuse or reason to continue to keep the same person in charge that has a history of proven failure.

And besides…sometimes failure in and of itself is reason to dismiss a GM of his position.

Smoothie

March 15th, 2010
9:47 pm

Rawhide – point taken and I would be fine with Dudley for now as I think we’d be hard-pressed to find anyone else to take this job in light of the current climate and ownership operation. Obviously Duds likes a challenge and I think he could take us from perennial cellar-dwellar to middle of the pack, playoffs hopeful. But after that, to truly get over the top, I think we’ll need someone with a bit more cache, let’s say, to attract the true, top-tier free-agents who could transform an up and coming team full of young upstarts on the rise to true contender. Also, playing devil’s advocate, didn’t Duds go on record as saying he prefers staying on the scouting side of things in an advisory role or did I just dream that up…or read it from someone else on this blog?

Wayne stuck in AL

March 15th, 2010
10:22 pm

Please…NO MORE RUSSIANS!!! NO MORE EUROS!!!

Wayne stuck in AL

March 15th, 2010
10:28 pm

Re: Iceman’s previous column about being stuck with Waddell yet another season

This being an area where college sports (OK, college football) are king, we can take a tip from wealthy boosters at major college sports programs: When those wealthy boosters get dissatisfied with a coach, they’ll go up to the AD or the school president and threaten to withhold a sizeable donation, or leasing that luxury box, or donating cattle and livestock to the team’s training table (Big 12 people) until said coach is fired. Why can’t STH’s explicitiy tell their season-ticket rep that unless Waddell is fired, they’re withholding their money?

LAC

March 15th, 2010
10:35 pm

scotty I did and I see nothing.

There is just nothing to say anymore about waddell, these owners or the team, they ALL SUCK.

We have ALL said what needs to happen and the Educated Idiot Drunk levenson has too much book sense to do the right thing. Can that FOOL even read ? We The Fans want waddell GONE, so why do you owners continue to hide and avoid the FANS like you do ?

Let’s have a Open Arena meeting with ALL owners and let ALL fans in, NOT just STH’s, Everyone and see if you little wimps have the GUTS to face the people who finance your team, We DEMAND change, It’s about DAMN time you made changes !

Come out of the closet owners and Face The Fans in an open forum that we ALL can attend
and answer OUR questions once and for all, Quit Hiding !

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
10:55 pm

I simply must agree with Rawhide, gang. It’s “too easy” to simply say, “who would come here?” When we could take a few of our regular bloggers, or Rawhide, himself, and do a better job. And that’s just by taking “consensus” NHL Central Scouting picks, making “no-brainer” waiver claims, and promoting those in the AHL who are worthy. It’s not exactly rocket science to be a GM, and to make “incremental progress.” Especially with ownership that doesn’t particularly care if you make the playoffs or not. So, there’s no “win NOW, or Else” ultimatum going on.

Say, for example, the Spirit, LLC in a dumbfounding move, responded to Sage of Bluesland’s emails, then hired him based on his rebuttals. Guess what Sage would do next? No, not bungle the team worse than Waddell. Sage and DW are “tied” for playoff victories. Sage, by his own admission, would contact the NHL for an advisor. And the NHL would probably embrace that prudent decision.

Try to take it from a “we’re just trying not to screw this up worse” approach. Taking Bogosian and Kane is something that 9 outta 10 GM’s would have done. You certainly didn’t need Waddell for that. We can make some argument over Kane. Another GM might have taken Brayden Schenn, or MPS. But generally-speaking, we’d still have these players in our system. And Sage, the GM, might shy away from trades, knowing that trading for players who don’t want to be here is a recipe for disaster. Nor does Sage particularly want to be fleeced by a more experienced GM, looking to take advantage of his inexperience.

Sage, also knowing that ‘real GM’s’ make their living on Draft Day, with their 2nd round pick, would ask the NHL for a Draft advisor. In the process, Sage, the GM, would ask the NHL about strategies, if he didn’t have one in mind. Really? Well, stop. Why WOULDN’T HE ask the league for help? As in, “I’ve just inherited the GM chair of the Thrashers, I need someone to help me evaluate the talent we’ve already got, then devise a strategy that makes sense, moving forward.” The League, I’m the sure, which EXPECTS the Atlanta market to do well, would be ‘thrilled’ to help out the SAGE, and direct the franchise in a positive direction. The NHL could hardly complain, at that point, since they were being consulted on moves to improve the team. I don’t really know what Sage’s expectations of salary might be, but no matter what the AS, LLC paid him, I suspect he’d make do more than Waddell. Which, bear in mind, means two playoff berths, and one playoff win. Sadly, that’s not a typo.

Bear in mind, “it’s a process.” Few GM’s pull off what Mike Holmgren did in Philly, going from 56-points to 95-points and a berth in the CF in the span of a season. Colorado is in the midst of a remarkable turn-around. No one should expect that from Sage of Bluesland, or any other blogger, or any other Assistant GM somewhere in the league.

I’m certainly willing to give someone who wants the challenge, the chance. John Anderson CRIED upon getting the news that he’d been named the next Head Coach of the Thrashers. I should clarify, they were ‘tears of joy,’ not a lamentation that it wasn’t the Red Wings job that he always wanted. And yet, as I recall, we all speculated, “But WHO in their RIGHT MIND would want to be the lame duck Head Coach of the Atlanta Thrashers.”

What if … the ownership … really does … just want to turn ALL decisions over to a GM who knows what he’s doing?, then get out of his way. I’d be thrilled at that!!! That’s the very definition of GREAT OWNERSHIP. Hire a competent GM. Make him accountable for results. But give him the money, then GET OUT OF HIS WAY. Let him MANAGE. If that’s their approach, then I suspect a lot of would-be GM’s would be interested.

Again, let’s assume that the budget is the FLOOR of the cap. It’s still possible to build a Stanley Cup winner within 5 years. Huh? Yeah, just by being in the lottery draft, nailing your 2nd round picks, making good waiver claims, and, above all, PROPERLY DEVELOPING those prospects, your team should be young, fast, and highly skilled. For real. But the GM should be drafting players into ‘his concept’ for the TEAM IDENTITY. There are lots of possible strategies. A depth strategy, rolling 4 lines, filled with 20 goal scorers. Rigorous forecheck, sending two guys deep. Team Defense. Team Speed. Left Wing lock. Trap. Grit. Finesse team. Lots of strategies are tried. Pick one. The implement it. Not rocket science. Yes, there will be difficult choices along the way. It’s not always easy to be a GM. But you don’t need a degree from Havard, Stanford or Yale, either.

Rawhide

March 15th, 2010
11:06 pm

Brendan – Thank you, Professor…and very nicely put.

LAC – I think Scotty was pointing out that I wrote/dedicated this blog entry to honor the late Peter Graves…specifically his role as Capt. Oveur.

An “open air” THM with all fans welcome, you say…not that I’d like to see.

Wayne stuck in AL – I like your idea…and it’s spot on. Those alumni groups and boosters know how to throw their weight around. It’ssimilar to my suggestion to Lew32 earlier in the evening, I think.

Brendan

March 15th, 2010
11:30 pm

By the way, Columbus did win over Edmonton. Dang it. Anyone feel bad for Pat Quinn? Aw, c’mon. He did well coaching Canada’s Juniors team. The Oilers had a lot of confidence in him to work with the young guys in their organization.

New Jersey defeated Boston, in regulation time. I am worried for the Bruins. In my predictions from the trade deadline, I had Montreal at #9, NYR, at #8, and Boston at #7. I’m starting to think … flip Montreal and Boston. I still like the NY Rangers at #8. I saw Atlanta at #10.

Outscored 22-8 over the past six games, with an 0-5-1 record, I do wonder if Atlanta is a better team, sans Kovalchuk. I suppose, I’ve really got to stop doing that. What does it matter? He’s gone. Time to move on. Time to try a new approach. I hope it’s the “depth strategy” approach, as long as our 20 goal scorers aren’t John Sim, Richard Park, Mark Recchi, Keith Tkachuk types, in their late 30’s, early 40’s, who will have nothing left in the tank, come April. So, I should correct myself. I hope for a depth strategy, with young, skilled players, who can win puck battles with grit. There. Much better.

Wayne stuck in AL

March 16th, 2010
12:19 am

RE: Iceman’s blog on HockeyBuzz: Did Don Waddell Just Give John Anderson The ‘Kiss of Death’?

If this were baseball, definitely; I’ve seen too many “votes of confidence” mean “We’re firing your butt in a few weeks if you don’t turn this around”. But neither Waddell or Anderson are in any danger of being fired because Atlanta Spirit has indirectly admitted they’re completely tone deaf to the hockey fan of Atlanta. Besides, they’re more interested in keeping Joe Johnson (the guy that got them in this mess in the first place) than fixing the problem with the Thrashers.

Sage of Bluesland

March 16th, 2010
1:41 am

Laughing at Brendan’s post and his confidence in my GM ability…However, I could certainly post as many playoff victories as our blustering little fraud of a GM has over the past decade, couldn’t I? That must really grind some of the lambs around here, too! (thinking of you-know-who; by the way, where did some of the older sheep go? funny how they aren’t around too much anymore, isn’t it?)

I couldn’t do ‘much’ worse, could I?

I CAN tell you one thing I would have done–and I said it on draft-day 2002: I wouldn’t have taken the Eurogoalie with the 2nd overall pick. I would have informed Florida that if they moved out of the top spot, then they would lose Bouwmeester, as he would be wearing a Thrashers jersey in just a few minutes. Florida would stay put at number one and take the player they coveted. Atlanta is there at #2 to scoop up Rick Nash. Columbus, stuck at #3, would have to fork over a king’s ransom get the player they coveted (Nash).

Now, some sheep will come by and say “That’s not how it happened; Columbus traded up with Florida to the top spot, thus Nash would have never been a Thrasher”. That is where your ignorance would show, too. Please do some research before you embarrass yourself.

Florida ONLY moved out of the top spot when they received assurance from our blustering little fraud of a GM that we would not take ‘their’ guy (Bouwmeester)…They gave us some inducement to sway our thinking, too (a draft pick which became Slater, I believe). Donny strutted around as proud as a peacock, blustering about getting the player he wanted all along (the glass-groined wunderkind who was many years away from contributing anything).

This (statement) would become a sad pattern, too–as I believe he said words to the same effect when we took the fat kid (Bourret) after trading down a couple of times…Good ol’ “Trader Don”, who likes to be liked by the other GMs…yet he is so far outclassed it’s not even funny anymore. Sadder still is the sheep who continue to believe it!

In the end, Columbus got who they wanted (Nash); Florida got who they wanted (Bouwmeester); Atlanta got who Donny wanted (Lehtonen). However, Atlanta was the pivot to the entire chain of transactions. Despite what some may say of my intellect, I would have laughed at Florida’s offer and stated it very bluntly to all parties: Unless I’m really bowled over, Nash or Bouwmeester (as Heaven knows we need defensemen, too) will be wearing a Thrashers sweater on that podium. Let someone else take the Euroteen–let someone else develop him–let someone else take that particular risk. I believe that if you build enough weapons, the goalie can come via free agency as the final missing piece, the true hired-gun.

If Heatley-Kovalchuk-Nash-Stefan isn’t a young core of a hockey team that’s not the envy of the league, then I don’t know what would be.

I said it that very day, too–and have witnesses (I believe Brendan recalls my ranting over what happened on that fateful day?). When I was informed–by Brendan I believe–that the Florida GM and our bumbling Donny “go way back”, I went ballistic. It became crystal-clear in my mind that we had a clown in charge who either (1) was a buffoon; or, (2) did not have the Thrashers’ true best interest at heart.

I stopped listening to Waddell’s bluster on that very day. I emailed the “classy” Waddell on this specific chain of events on draft-day 2002, as well as where all the “talent” was he had been drafting since 1999 and how it was progressing in the minors (despite the no-brainer picks in Heatley and Kovalchuk–and even Stefan) and why more aren’t trickling into the parent-club, or even gracing the presence of the YoungStars game with a participant every year….I’m still waiting for “classy” Donny’s response, too.

How some continue to defend the indefensible is incomprehensible to me. Oh well, I’m sure the Thrashers know where to find me…Removing the utter and complete stench of a decade of Don Waddell would actually be a pleasure.

(and I would even buy Smoothie a real economics book, one that he could actually understand…)

ben

March 16th, 2010
3:24 am

I picked the Snyuder crash because I think it moved people away from this team. I know that sounds crazy but the area is filled with Conservatives who very much look down at any alchol consumption. I also think it spooked Waddell. And, frankly, I would have fired him after the Snyder crash. Because you simply do not tell an early twenties male you’re paying millions to to drive himself to a team function after he’s been around alch. You put him in a limo. Any scheduler knows that. When I had to handle a shooting sked w/ a RAGING alchy, I always put another behind the wheel.

As I said on an earlier post, I have wondered since before 17 was traded if the original powers that be EVER intended Waddell to be here this long.

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
5:49 am

Rawhide – another Johnny line- “What does it look like? Oh, it looks like a big Tylonol with wings”.
Those votes of confidence sounds like some people are circling the wagons.

Brandon, I wish we would have hired Quinn. I have always been a big Pat fan. He got a bad deal in Edmonton this year. The Oilers are a total mess, talk about overpaying a bunch of stiffs. Boston is a mess right now, Tim Thomas looks like a minor league goalie again. Montreal is making a move and the Habs fans are giving credit to their recent additions like Dom Moore. Dom and co. may get the Habs into the playoffs but not past the first round.

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
8:00 am

OOps, sorry Brendan, not Brandon.
Serves me right for posting before I have had my first cup of coffee.

Hotrod

March 16th, 2010
8:15 am

Well here we are again. As been said the previous 6 or 7 years, The ownership is concerned with their internal struggles of partnership.
They do not care about a GM change. No one knows the first thing
about finding a new one. easier to keep the devil you know than find an
angel you dont know.

LAC

March 16th, 2010
8:16 am

The first time it was not there… I liked Peter Graves in Stalag 17, A GREAT Movie !!!

The Real Thrash

March 16th, 2010
8:22 am

1. I think that would be kicked in the head with a hobnail boot.
2. No matter where or when we draft we will whiff on the pick, reach or draft a star that will not be
resigned.

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
8:48 am

LAC-Great war movie

Rawhide

March 16th, 2010
8:54 am

I liked Peter Graves in Stalag 17, A GREAT Movie !!!

LAC - Indeed…he played the German who was planted in the POW barracks to get info from the Allied prisoners. I love how they sent him off to his doom!

Brendan

March 16th, 2010
9:17 am

ben, Heatley had consumer half a beer at a tavern, and was not impaired during the crash. We was nowhere near failing a blood alcohol content test. He was driving recklessly, down a narrow, curvy road, down Lennox Rd. One player does NOT a team make. Not even if his name is Heatley. Not even if his name is Savard. Not even if his name is Kovalchuk.

The organization moved past the tragedy in relatively short order. And I do give Waddell credit for that. As well as the Statesman-like way he handled the funeral. Don gets top marks from me on that one.

April 2007 … was a glorious time to do something to retain Kovalchuk. Bygones.

DWTOO

March 16th, 2010
9:40 am

Hilfe! Hilfe! Ich been ein Duetscher! Didn’t work for Security in Stalag 17. One of the all time classics.

“And there’s a sale at Penneyss!”

We need a break from hockey. Just too depressing. I picked the wrong day to quit sniffing glue.

Brendan – I picked the Heatley crash because everything just went downhill from the that point. Injuries, playoff malfunction, we just seem to have a big cloud over our heads. Example – hitting 5 posts (one that would have won the shootout).

Christoph Schubert

March 16th, 2010
9:52 am

Persönlich möchte ich wissen, wer der ein scheißekopf ist der gewählt hat Don Waddell in der anhängerabstimmung zu behalten

Alan R.

March 16th, 2010
10:04 am

Thrashers Fans: Boy, every piece of garbage that comes into the market and you gotta buy it!
D-Wad: Fans, fans, that reminds me. I was coachin’ in Omaha in 1948 and Eddie Shore sends me this guy who was a terrible …, ahem, you know, couldn’t control himself…

jimbo

March 16th, 2010
10:08 am

Wrong guys! We do not have a pobox or a timesahre in Lotterypickville, we have the first house on the right, the only permanent fixture in town. And, we don’t tank, we totally ‘implode” each year. And, “Teflon Don” will still be answering the door next year but Johnnie Boy will be a mail carrier in the town. Tis the season once again for a rash of “gallows humor”. by the way, I bet that The Teflon One is pouring over the Michigan State roster to see if there is another MSU clown that he can grab and give the secret handshake to.

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
10:10 am

Heatley crash for sure-
The tower! The tower! Repunsil! Repunsil!

Badger Bob

March 16th, 2010
10:43 am

MB, I’m dropping my ST and will let them know the lack of progress is the ENTIRE reason. I will be buying lots of single game tix because “why deprive myself of live NHL hockey when I don’t think a “boycott” will have any effect”.

For franchise turning point, I pick hideous ownership. Mostly because the quickest way to unscrew-up this organization would be the sale of the team to an individual who cares about hockey and about championships. That is also the quickest way to stop the player revolving door and get the considerable potential fan base interested again.

Badger Bob

March 16th, 2010
10:45 am

Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit amphetimines…

Perhaps the presence of all those obnoxious Sabres fans paired with a win will be my upper (Sage, that’s called optimism, not sheepism).

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
10:55 am

Sabres fan for 40 years now.
Going to the game with a buddy tonight and he asked me if I am wearing my Sabres’ jersey. I said, heck no, got my Thrashers blue jersey!

Smoothie

March 16th, 2010
10:56 am

I blame Nancy Pelosi for not getting health care passed. Perhaps if everyone had better health insurance, they wouldn’t worry so much about the Thrashers.

There are a lot of reasons this franchise is in such a bad spot, but like any poorly run or mismanaged business, there are myriad factors that have led to their current position as league dormat and schedule fodder. No doubt that this franchise could benefit from a paradigm shift and a change of thinking at the top. However, until I see anything different in terms of the approach from ownership, I’m not very optimistic about either a GM change or a coaching change. And I’m all for both if it changes the direction of this team and changes the perception around the league in the eyes of players and potential FA.

But alas, the Joe Johnson mess may in fact be the biggest precipitating factor in leading us to where the Thrashers are today. And once again, it looks like the Joe Johnson situation is going to determine the immediate future of the Thrashers as it will surely impact the decision-making of the ASG if Johnson walks. I for one hope he does because if he does then that means the ASG didn’t meet his inflated salary demands thus further hampering the budget flexibility of the Thrashers side of the house. Until the owners view this hockey franchise as more than just a tax write-off to offset their tax liability, we will not see any meaningful change as Bob likes to say.

It’s hard enough running one sports franchise let alone two. But if a huge chunk of the Octocluster’s capital inflow is cut off (Belkin) indefinitely and they can’t find a replacement investor, it’s easy to see that they are making decisions out of fear of uncertainty. Don Waddell is one of the few constants they know (good or bad, mostly maddeningly mediocre) and for some unforseen reason, they have decided to trust him implicitly. Either they really don’t give a damn about hockey or they just don’t want to change the hockey side of the house until the ownership mess can be resolved. And to make matters worse, this is not the kind of economy in which you make risky decisions. In their eyes, they must see firing Waddell as a riskier proposition than bringing in someone else who can totally transform the culture of this franchise. In adversity, opportunities often come along, but you’ve got to have the guts to seize them. I’m not holding my breath though.

Tom Lysiak

March 16th, 2010
11:09 am

Brendan, you mentioned something above that you have touched on several times before here. You opined that Sage would probably avoid trades because “trading for players who don’t want to be here is a recipe for disaster”. The reality is players normally have only one option when traded, report or retire. Trades are a part of every major sport. Obviously, trading players is somewhat of a risk due to the emotional toll on the player. But, that is the price of being a professional athlete. It can happen at any time. Players are viewed as commodities. Do you think Melky Cabrera wanted to leave the Yankees for the Braves this offseason? Maybe or maybe not. Who knows how he felt about playing in New York? Do you think Pothier really wanted to leave the Caps for Carolina? Considering the team standings and potential for winning the Cup this year? It happened to them anyway.

Reality is, players are forced to move and change teams all the time. I doubt successful GM’s factor player’s feelings into making trades they think will improve their teams. It’s just assumed that they will accept the move and eventually embrace the situation, or leave the team when their contract expires.

Rumac

March 16th, 2010
11:48 am

The last thing he said to me, “Doc,” he said, “some time when the crew is up against it, and the breaks are beating the boys, tell them to get out there and give it all they got and win just one for the Zipper. I don’t know where I’ll be then, Doc,” he said, “but I won’t smell too good, that’s for sure.”

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
12:02 pm

Smoothie, nice post.

Lysiak-I saw Melky play on Saturday; he’s not an upgrade over anything we had so he should be happy to be in the major leagues. Just my baseball thoughts. You could add what Oduya and Bergfors whether they want to move to “it is what it is”.

Rumac-”Excuse me doctor, I have a plane to land.”

Smoothie

March 16th, 2010
12:19 pm

WBF – thanks, and I am still trying to figure out the Melky Cabrera trade. I understand why they felt it was a good idea to trade Vazquez, but for Cabrera?? Surely they could’ve done better than that!

Y’all are pretty sharp when it comes to your classic movie one-liners!

Red Light

March 16th, 2010
12:39 pm

“You said he was being transferred because he was in grave danger.”

“That’s correct.”

“Then I said ‘grave danger’, and you said, ‘is there any other kind?’”

rob

March 16th, 2010
12:46 pm

JA, PLEASE READ!!!!

Can you PLEASE take Tobi all by himself to one half of the rink during the next practice and MAKE HIM SHOOT THE F-ING PUCK TIL HE FALLS OVER EXHAUSTED!!!!!! All his deflected BS passes instead of pulling the trigger are threatening my 58″ TV with a flying controller!!!!! If you don’t shoot Tobi…….you don’t SCORE (or get a deflection or a rebound or even a scoring CHANCE)!!! Kovalchuck is GONE!!! Forget that phantom in you head calling for the failed one-timer and SHOOT THE PUCK!!!!

rob

March 16th, 2010
12:54 pm

WBF,
I went to the last Buffalo game with a group of co workers and my brother all from Buffalo…..did I ever hear it for my Thrashers jersey, but I told them that while I am from Buffalo, I am surely not moving back EVER and Atlanta is home so I will claim the Thrashers win-lose-or pity point! Unfortunately I have seen more losses than wins but it is still good to get out there and yell ’til your hoarse and have some fun. I don’t know if I could be a STH just because it takes about 2 days for my voice to come back after a game LOL

Schroeder

March 16th, 2010
1:04 pm

“THE BLUE ZONE IS FOR LOADING AND UNLOADING PASSENGERS ONLY”,”THE WHITE ZONE IS FOR…” “DON’T GIVE ME THAT BLUE ZONE SH_T…”

Rawhide

March 16th, 2010
1:06 pm

Surely they could’ve done better than that!

Smoothie – Yes they could have…and stop calling him Shirley!

:lol:

Levenson

March 16th, 2010
1:08 pm

Do you know what it’s like to fall in the mud and get kicked… in the head… with an iron boot? Of course you don’t, no one does. It never happens. Sorry, Don, that’s a dumb question… skip that. Now got out there and draft us another superstar that will leave the first chance he gets.

n8

March 16th, 2010
1:12 pm

Kabanov has been playing junior in Moncton, he’s not in Russia anymore

Diego from Lilburn

March 16th, 2010
1:15 pm

A.P. Press Release *** For general distribution ***
The office of Don Waddell today released an announcement that Mr. Waddell intends to run for re-election as Mayor of Lotterypickville. Mr. Waddell is quoted as saying, “It has been my pleasure to serve as Mayor of Lotterypickville for all these years and I would be doing a great disservice to the hockey community as a whole if I were to leave now. Especially hockey fans in other towns. When their team arrives in Lotterypickville they know their team will emerge victorious and flush with confidence as they continue their push for the playoffs. The staffers here in Lotterypickville will continue their same level of performance under my continued leadership and I will continue to trade them away or let them walk at the end of their contracts. I would like to thank the ASG for their continued support of my campaign as Mayor of Lotteryville. And we’re raising taxes on all you STH schmucks. Have a good day and I’ll see you at the polls!”

rob

March 16th, 2010
1:15 pm

Rightshot

March 16th, 2010
1:17 pm

“Flying a plane is just like riding a bike. It’s just alot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes.”

Tom Lysiak

March 16th, 2010
1:36 pm

WBF and Smoothie, the Vazquez-Cabrera trade was a simple salary dump IMHO. They also swapped relievers and Cashman threw in the possible winning piece in Vizcaino. Yankees win short-term unless Vazquez sticks to his every-other-year-sucking routine. Braves win long-term if Vizcaino pans out. Think Smoltz and JJ….

Back to hockey though….Smoothie, I think you are mostly correct in your last paragraph about the owners and the lawsuit, economy, etc. I believe ASG will NOT sell the team. I think they will get additional owners/infusion of cash after the suit is settled, permanently. I also think everyone is about to be very happy. I think DW will be moved upstairs as has been rumored and will no longer have GM duties. The question is whether Dudley moves up or stays in the background, as he prefers. Why else would he want to leave the Blackhawks and come to this scenario? Unless he knew the plan in advance and had some assurances. That, or the Bowman regime was not palatable. What if they brought in someone like Dale Tallon and he and Dudley worked together here as they did in Chicago (minus the little offer deadline snafus)? Or someone else altogether?

Of course, my disclaimer is I could be completely wrong, but I just see the stars aligning in that direction….

English Teacher

March 16th, 2010
1:44 pm

D-Wad kiss of death? Does that mean we’ll hear this conversation in the future:

“Who’s that?”

“It’s Coach Weeks. Severe shell shock. He thinks he’s Ethel Merman”

(Weeks singing) “You’ll be swell! You’ll be great! Gonna have the whole world on a plate! Startin’ here, startin’ now, honey everything’s comin’…up…rowwww…zezzzzz…”

“Thrashers hockey is hell.”

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
1:53 pm

Smoothie-I hear the pitching prospect we received with Melky is top notch. Still, you give up a 200+ inning horse who pitched well in Turner Field for a backup outfielder and a prospect.

Rob-Totally agree, Buffalo is a nice place to be from. Those people that gave you heck need to come to grips with the fact that they live in a new city. You wanna be a Buffalo die hard then you need to move back. Not for me!

Schoeder-good one, I think we could go on for hours with quotes.
“Stewardess, I speak jive”

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
1:55 pm

Lysiak-thanks for the additional info on the deal. and you are correct, it was a $$$ dump cause we couldn’t resign Vasquez after this season anyhow.

Smoothie

March 16th, 2010
2:00 pm

Tom L — thanks for reminding me about Vizcaino, forgot about that part of the trade. Overall, you’re right, the pitching staff should be better. As for the Thrashers, I hope u r right and some type of change happens as I’m ready to celebrate the end of Stooge of Blusterland’s ridiculous and tired routine. Its like arguing with Jeff Schultz! Oh wait, he IS Jeff Schultz!!

Red Light

March 16th, 2010
2:40 pm

Not sure if you all realize that the Buffalo Sabres have a 300-member strong fan club group, part of the Sabres Road Crew, here in town that held a reception last night at the Hudson Grill in Midtown with Ruff, Regier, Jeaneret and others. Now, I ask you, outside of the so-called Sun Belt teams, where else in the NHL could that happen?

Imagine, a Rangers fan club in Philly? The place would be bombed!

World Be Free

March 16th, 2010
3:03 pm

I heard about that gig. I met Ruff when he was a player and Jenneret at a benefit softball tourny in the mid 80’s.

Yup, alot of us escaped Buffalo, went over the wall at Midnight and rarely look back. I think of Buffalo I think of a quote from a Neil Young song- “It’s better to burn out, cause rust never sleeps!

EA

March 16th, 2010
4:24 pm

Red Light, thanks for the info. I was wavering on whether to use my tickets tonight. No way. The Atlanta turned Buffalo fans for one night already give me a migrane. I can’t imagine having 300 natives in town sitting near me. Go Thrashers! A win at the least, would quiet those obnoxious fans.

Badger Bob

March 16th, 2010
5:02 pm

WBF, good on ya for wearing the Thrash jersey tonight! And if you see someone in a Sabres jersey fly over the glass out of Section 102, you’ll know my son and I finally had enough of their obnoxiousness…

Badger Bob

March 16th, 2010
5:08 pm

Red Light, the same thing was happening in Calgary when the Flames first got there, with throngs of Hab fans and fan clubs. What finally ended it? Success by the Flames. By the last half of the 80’s most of the Hab faithful in Calgary had converted. Two or three years of success will decimate the ranks of the fans of other teams. At the rate we’re going, we can look forward to that some time after the next census arrives.

fes

March 16th, 2010
5:10 pm

The main group of Buff fans that descend on Philips are part of the Bills Backers of Atlanta (my ticket rep sells to them, so I know first hand).

The Vazquez move wasn’t really a salary dump. The Braves had 6 legit starters and no room for them all. Someone had to go and there were no takers for Lowe’s huge salary.

Tom Lysiak

March 16th, 2010
5:53 pm

fes, I guess we could argue over calling it a salary dump. As you said, they couldn’t find anyone to dump Lowe’s contract on. They could have kept a 6th starter in the pen, but contracts and performances wouldn’t allow that. Hanson and JJ are untouchables, Huddy is solid. Kawakami did allright, but 3 years at $23 million made him tough to move. So, they moved the 2nd highest salaried pitcher who only had one year remaining anyway. That freed up $9 million. They got marginal return on the trade. Kinda smells like a salary dump…..

Either way, Go THRASHERS!!!

Brendan

March 16th, 2010
6:35 pm

Reality is, players are forced to move and change teams all the time. I doubt successful GM’s factor player’s feelings into making trades they think will improve their teams. It’s just assumed that they will accept the move and eventually embrace the situation, or leave the team when their contract expires.

But therein lies the difficulty, Tom Lysiak. If you trade for a player with 3-years or less on his contract, he starts to eyeball the exit. Trading for a player who is plotting an exit strategy on his way into Hartsfield isn’t a good situation. Even though, the player could change his mind. And like you said, he has no choice but to report. Wayne Gretzky got traded, so anyone can get traded. But I think GM’s do factor into consideration what a player might do the chemistry and dynamic of the lockerroom.

For example, Sean Avery might be skilled player, for his role, and what’s expected of him. But bringing in an “Avery-type” player might really cause disharmony to the room and the fanbase. I wouldn’t think a GM would totally discount that. But, each GM is different. Chicago actually signed Theo Fleury, hoping he had one last flap of his wings left in him.

I prefer to draft my own players, develop my own players, promote my own players, so that I don’t have to bring in outsiders, who must learn the system, and who never asked to be here. If I sign a guy from free agency, no one put a gun to his head. He came of his own free choice. If I trade for him, I need 4-5 years left on the deal, so that the guy has to resign himself to being here.

Dan Boyle face that prospect of a waiver claim, with six years remaining on his contract. He feared winding up in Atlanta, so he waived his no trade clause to accept a deal to San Jose. Now, most guys who get waived don’t have six years left on a contract. That’s very unusual. Any player who gets waived has to report to the team that claims him. But he sure doesn’t have to re-sign there.

I think the player’s know that professionalism dictates that they try their hardest for every game. But, trying your hardest can be linked to your happiness level. Who does their best work, flustered? If you follow what I’m saying. I don’t think any player really embarks on a campaign of “sucking” so as to facilitate a trade or being waived. It’s just the natural progression of not being where you want to be, being frustrated over ice time, and situational play. Maybe the player is in the coach’s dog house, big time. Who can say? But I do believe it affects the player’s morale. That’s how I see it, anyway.

rob

March 16th, 2010
7:13 pm

LMAO, dam obnoxious Sabres fans!!!! Dealing with that much snow for so long does strange things to a person….that is why they are so rude (and why I left as well) LOL Can’t believe you wouldn’t go just because of them though, it’s always good to see the game when you have the chance. Though I am sure there will be more than one drunken altercation both inside and outside…oh well here’s to hoping the boys can play a good game tonight!
LET’S GO THRASHERS!!!!!

Lee

March 16th, 2010
7:14 pm

Whoooo! 33 seconds baby!!

Just curious where’s Brendan???????

Lee

March 16th, 2010
7:16 pm

Wow, I’m stupid, I found Brendan.

Little scored!!

Sunny

March 16th, 2010
7:30 pm

OK, so it’s been quite a while since I’ve left a comment, but that blog was just too fabulous NOT to post, Bill!! Excellent job! That was really great – and sweet =). I’m sure none of you remembers me but I am the Canes fan (don’t shoot!) that used to occasionally drop in. Atlanta fans, I come in peace. I really & truly want the Thrashers to make the playoffs. The main reasons are 1. I hate Florida (as do all Canes fans) & would like to see you know them out & 2. I feel like Atlanta fans have gotten such a raw deal it’s almost a joke…except it isn’t funny. Following the Canes @ Thrashers game 2 Sundays ago, I stumbled upon some great pics a female Thrashers blogger had posted on her site after attending the game. I’d like to share w/ you all the same thing I left in her comments section (of course I can’t remember the name of her blog, I’m so sorry! I’ll find it & post here when I find it I promise.)Anyway a couple years ago the Thrashers booster club attended a game here at the RBC Centre. The Atlanta fans were enthusiastic, loud but not obnoxious (unlike some – *COUGH* Buffalo *COUGH*) & also very knowledgeable. The thing that impressed me most was that after the game, every single one of them stayed at their seats, stood & applauded all 3 stars – even tho Atlanta lost & all the stars were Canes players. That was such a classy & awesome display of sportsmanship!! I can’t tell you how well that speaks to your fan base. I’m no fool, I know all fan bases have their jerks – but that was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen. No Panther fan would do that, I can assure you!! Anyway, I know times are tough but I just wanted to say I hope you guys make the playoffs & shove it in the faces of those snobs who say places like Atlanta & Raleigh don’t “deserve” hockey teams!!

One last thing: a few months ago some blowhard was spouting off about that whole “Make It 7″ crap (which actually makes fools of canadians, but that’s for another day). well I may be a Southern Belle but I was so angry. So I said “You know what? That’s so funny you should say that! Because I’ve actually been thinking about how to start a campaign & website demanding all indoor pools & tennis courts removed from Canada & moved back to their rightful place down south; you know, where people really ‘get’ what those sports are about. Not like in places where you have to do both INDOORS most of the year!! I mean, sure – a few people up there may like them, but c’mon – they just don’t belong in places where they’re not TRULY appreciated. Maybe we could work together!” The look on his face was worth a million dollars =)

JB

March 16th, 2010
7:40 pm

Are there any GMs available in the draft?

rob

March 16th, 2010
8:09 pm

Give you our lottery draft if you just take ASG and DW!!

Tom Lysiak

March 16th, 2010
8:49 pm

Brendan, I don’t disagree with your logic. Free agency definitely offers a player little opportunity to complain, because they made their own bed. It’s just that trades happen all the time and players have to be professionals and fulfill the contract. Basically, suck it up and play.

Tom

March 16th, 2010
9:40 pm

Unhappy slug fans tonight.

I do think though that everyone watching the game said “That’s why we got rid of Max” after watching his play in the last minute of the game. Passing it offsides with no goalie in the last minute of the game? The man has a 50 cent game with a 10 cent brain…

stendek

March 16th, 2010
9:50 pm

Glad that overrated piece of commode residue Ryan “Sieve” Miller surrendered a trio of goals on only five shots! Loser must have had flashbacks of being back in the Olympic gold medal showdown against Canada. Heartless cur! My only regret is that the jerk did not get saddled with a well deserved defeat. Johan Lehtonen allowed the first loser at Olympics to wiggle off hook! Was not impressed with Moose impersonation of Michelin marshmallow man. Goal impotent Thrashers staked him to an early 3-1 lead for the love of God! Losing streak is over. Guess that is slight cause for meager jubilation. Rah. A win is a win. Especially one in regulation! Too little too late for these prima donnas. Such is life for Atlanta professional hockey fans! ++STENDEK++

R. Stroz

March 16th, 2010
9:57 pm

I would like to thank the female contingent of the local Buffalo Sabres fan club who met in Buckhead last night for taking Ryan Miller’s legs out from under him.

R. Stroz

March 16th, 2010
10:17 pm

Tom – How is your wife taking the Buffalo loss?

Nikita

March 16th, 2010
10:31 pm

Welcomes, ‘Canes fan!

I just watched the recap on Versus, while also watching the Rangers-Habs game and the Florida-whoever-just-killed-them game. Boy, am I glad I didn’t go down to the BOA center. Since I just watched the recaps, I don’t have anything insightful to say.

Except:
1. Anybody know why Thorburn was scratched? That got changed last minute, or anyway isn’t what the line combos suggest would be the case.
2. Yay, Little Jimmy MacElroy!
3. Kozlov was a -2. Seriously. WTF?

Tom Lysiak

March 16th, 2010
10:42 pm

Nikita, I believe I heard JA say in the post-game that Thorburn was sick tonight prior to game time.

Tom

March 16th, 2010
10:48 pm

She is more of a Thrashers fan these days. Of course, not sure if that is a good thing.

She also mentioned to me that the Slug fans are the rudest to come to Phillips and that has turned her off.

Told you I married well. :)

Badger Bob

March 16th, 2010
10:57 pm

Sunny, good to hear from ya! I’m with you on the Canadians constantly talking of relocation (includng most of my famiy still stuck in the frozen tundra), and my shot back is that we’ll revoke their CFL rights for all the same reasons they whine about SE teams (attendance, TV, overall interest). That always pisses them off. Then start talking Stanley Cups and they all shut up. When the Caps give the Southeast conference their third cup in six years we’ll all have the last laugh.

About tonight, has JA just completely given up on the idea of a powerplay? PP Unit 1: Max, Antro & Bergie. Doesn’t that sound a bit like our first line? Hmmm… PP Unit 2: Pevs, Little and the General. Wait, that sounds like our second line! Did JA even notice when we had powerplays? How about parking Arty in front of the net? How about throwing Kozzy a bone and seeing if he’ll spark something? No imagination, no discernable system, no chance of long term success.

But Moose is now 12-2-2 lifetime against the slugs – gotta love that!

O'Rawhide

March 17th, 2010
12:09 am

Brendan

March 17th, 2010
12:13 am

I’m here. It’s nice to get a win. 1-0-1 in the last two games. Okay, I apologize for that, when the team is facing a nearly mathematical elimination. It’s just that … it’s nice to be able to post something positive.

JB cracked me with that, “Is there a GM available in this year’s draft?” I’ll do ya one better. “Is there an owner available at the draft?”

Tom Lysiak, I do agree with you. I think every player with a contract knows that he’s playing for his NEXT contract. And if he gets traded, he’s still expected to perform at the NHL level. For some players, like a Marc Savard, he merely fell out of favor in his camp. Savvy came to Atlanta and blossomed. He and Kovy had great chemistry. Some guys just need a change of scenery. I think Clarke MacArthur is one of those guys. Sometimes, a GM needs to bring in a player. And he has no other medium but a trade to accomplish it. It’s just risky. Whenever there’s a deficiency on the roster, one must examine WHYYYYYY it exists. If the GM is doing everything right, there should depth in the system. Where more serious help is needed, that’s the ‘tweak’ that free agency can fulfill. Or the trade deadline. But I think everyone understands what a “rental” situation is.

Brendan

March 17th, 2010
12:21 am

Kari Lehtonen got the win, 8-2, for Dallas over San Jose. What’s going on with the Sharks, lately?

Okay, so in the past two games, Moose has surrendered 7 goals. Three more games to go, to see if the 5-game total is 10, 15, or more like 20.

In the past seven games, the Thrashers have been outscored 25-12, going 1-5-1, for three of a possible fourteen (3/14) points. It feels good to get a win. For Sabres fans, they can take some consolation in knowing that the 28th or 29th ranked team, Toronto, upset Ottawa in regulation time tonight.

Ron Mexico

March 17th, 2010
1:06 am

If we end up with a top 10 pick, and that’s looking like a good possibility now, it’s gotta be Nino Niederreiter or bust. If you haven’t heard of him, remember that name. He was the standout for the Swiss during this past World Junior tourney. He singlehandedly kept the Swiss in contention against way superior competition, and supplied some highlight reel plays every now and again. I think he can be somebody really special over time.