Thrashers playoff hopes may have been buried under snowman built by Sabres

Things could not be going any worse for the Thrashers this weekend.

First there was Friday night as the Carolina Hurricanes beat the Islander in overtime and the Rangers spanked Montreal. Each moved two points further ahead in their efforts to try and procure a playoff spot. Then Saturday night…in a game called next in a series of “biggest games of the season” for Atlanta… we witnessed the Buffalo Sabres building a snowman on the Thrashers, winning 8-2.

Something tells me it may very well just be the last billed as such.

While we were having a brutally bad time watching events unfold in western New York, the Toronto Maple Leafs were busy whacking the Boston Bruins 5-1. And just for good measure, the Florida Panthers were in the process of picking up an overtime loser point by at least dragging the Islanders to a shootout.

What that all means is that instead of possible pulling to within two points of the eighth-place Sabres, the Thrashers remain at 72 points and are six points behind Buffalo with only ten games left on the schedule. The Canes are four ahead of the Thrashers while the Leafs moved two ahead, leaving Atlanta in sole possession of eleventh place in the Eastern Conference.

Tim Connolly's goal late in the third period completed the snowman built by the Buffalo Sabres Saturday night. Under it may quite possibly have been buried the Thrashers playoff chances (AP Photo/David Duprey)

Tim Connolly's goal late in the third period completed the snowman built by the Buffalo Sabres Saturday night. Under it may quite possibly have been buried the Thrashers playoff chances (AP Photo/David Duprey)

But in the words of the late, great Billy Mays…but wait, there’s more.

The New Jersey Devils will play in Columbus tomorrow and with a win will once again pull even with Atlanta. But given their advantage in the wins column it would actually drop us down to 12th place, just four ahead of the Panthers who are in the 13th position…and they’ll play two games before the Thrashers hit the ice again Thursday night on Long Island.

Go ahead and do the simple math there, folks.

As for the beat-down in Buffalo…well, it didn’t take the Sabres too terribly long getting to work on their snowman. Just 24 seconds after the puck dropped, Jason Pominville knocked it past Ondrej Pavelec for an early lead. Then, after Chris Thorburn’s sharp-angle shot got through Ryan Miller, the Sabres tacked on two more to take a 3-1 advantage into the first intermission.

To their credit, the Thrashers came out of the break playing very inspired hockey, leading to an Alex Burmistrov goal to get the score to within one. They continued to press the Buffalo defense for the first half of that middle frame…but that’s when the bottom fell out.

Nathan Gerbe’s jam-in from the right doorstep…the goal Thrashers TV analyst Darrin Eliot referred to as the “whack-a-mole” goal…lead very quickly to Tyler Ennis’ breakaway goal, despite Zach Bogosian’s stick being tossed at him.

It was Bogosian’s fumble at the offensive blueline that sprung Ennis to begin with.

In the third, Brad Boyes was added to the Thrashers woes. His power play goal made it 6-2 as Bogosian played the part of spectator.

After that, all that was left was simply to manufacture a couple of late-game tallies to complete the snowman. Rob Niedermayer second of the night at 16:52 and Tim Connolly’s on the power play 28 seconds later provided the corncob pipe and button nose.

If I’m not mistake, it was the seventh time this season an opponent has score twice in fewer than 39 seconds.

This loss looked a lot like so many we’ve seen since New Years…a close game halfway though the second turns into a blowout after an unfortunate goal or set of events. It happened during the 9-3 loss to Toronto on January 7, the 5-2 loss to Philly on January 14 and the 6-1 loss in Dallas two days after that.

Defensive zone breakdowns…one goal given up leads to another shortly thereafter…untimely giveaways…defensemen standing around…gift-wrapped turnovers at the blueline…

…sigh…

But unlike those collapses, this one could not have happened at a worse time with so much on the line. For under all that snow that Buffalo built a snowman with was quite possibly buried the last realistic chance the Thrashers might have had towards making a serious run at the playoffs this season.

Fortunately they’ll be plenty of warm weather in Thrasherville between now and the beginning of next season to melt all that snow away. Then we can begin anew our “playoff this season” hopes.

Again.

141 comments Add your comment

R. Stroz

March 19th, 2011
11:22 pm

R. Stroz

March 19th, 2011
11:24 pm

Just returned home from eating dinner with the wife at 57th Fighter Group, saw the score, and decided to skip the rerun.

Now don’t you guys blame Bogosian or Cornbread will come on and tell you that it was (insert name of forward)’s fault.

sisu

March 19th, 2011
11:30 pm

so as long as these cheap owners are involved the team will have goalie “consultant” vs. coach! Don’t look now but Kari is taking his new team to playoffs while this team has once again shown their true colors. The playoffs went down the drain in January against Philly once the team blew the 2 – 2 tie after 2 periods to lose at the end by 5 – 2…
Please give us new owners asap!!!!

ZAvalanche

March 19th, 2011
11:30 pm

Blog Master – congrats on your tax exemption’s awesome day, very cool. As for tonight, good lord was that bad Looks like I will be doing a lot more camping here shortly…

sisu

March 19th, 2011
11:31 pm

Oh and Pavelic needs more maturity to be a man to wear #31 because he has shown recently he is not deserving of wearing it lately!

BluelandBELIEVER

March 19th, 2011
11:36 pm

What the hell happened? We carried SO MUCH energy over the past week and its like it never existed…that performance was god awful. As much as i love this team there is no excuse for that kind of play. Dont even get me started on the zebras…

LAC

March 19th, 2011
11:37 pm

If this game does NOT prove zachA$$ needs to GO AWAY, then what does ? -3 tonight, what’s new ? Why is Ramsey, who needs to be replaced as well, so committed to little zach ?
Bergfors was a much better talent and Ramsey threw him under the bus, and zach is a million times WORSE than Bergfors, what gives ? BTW how is that GREAT new player davorak doing ?
Try invisible that’s a good term. Mason is a complete BUST, Pav is not much better, This team is a complete diaster, forget anymore talk about the playoffs, yet again another worthless season from your Atlanta Thrashers, under President, Dumb don waddell and GM DUD ! dudley and Coach Quiet
ramsey, Will this team ever get better ?, NO, because from this vantage point, the future looks as bleak as the past !

Russ

March 19th, 2011
11:44 pm

Anyone who expected the results in a crucial game to be much different hasn’t been paying close enough attention the last 11 years.

hockeygoon79

March 19th, 2011
11:46 pm

“”We didn’t really compete. It shows up when players are trying to get out of the way of a shot instead of into the way of a shot. That kinds of says it all.” – Craig Ramsay commenting on tonight’s total disaster.

Really coach? Ya think? And just who’s job is it to kick these guys a$$es when they play like that?

It’s happened too often this season. Ramsay needs to go.

Tom

March 19th, 2011
11:48 pm

Just got home from the state middle school inline tournament and very glad I missed this game. Didn’t even Tivo it.

R. Stroz

March 19th, 2011
11:49 pm

sisu – I believe we may have been the only two, although there may have been a few others, that thought the Thrashers gave up on Kari one year too early. I remember the news that Kari had a congenital spine disorder surgically corrected. So with one year of RFA status left, why not see if his physical problems had finally been fixed. Oh well, as Brendan says, bygones.

Then again, if we still had Kari, would the Thrashers have had the assets to flip for Ladd?

R. Stroz

March 19th, 2011
11:50 pm

Tom – Don’t tell your wife there is a replay currently playing.

Dwayne C

March 19th, 2011
11:51 pm

Playoff hopes for the Atlanta Thrashers? Are you kidding me? There is no hope for the post season…not the way this team manages to lose games in the same or similar fashion time and time again.

Alan R.

March 19th, 2011
11:51 pm

I went to radio after the first, and just used the radio as background noise after the second.

None of my teams won tonight, but I knew we wouldn’t.

Dave

March 19th, 2011
11:55 pm

I was so pumped for this game. What the hell happened out there? What a nightmare.

Rawhide

March 19th, 2011
11:58 pm

Tom – Did you have a tax exemption playing in the tournament? If so, how did it turn out? As for my day, to repost from the previous blog…my son’s academic team won first place in the mmet. In the final round, they beat the other 3 squads 190-25-10-5. The two preliminary rounds were similar, only with their scores >200.

I’m hoping to hear from hockeymom92 about how her T.E. did…

Will L

March 20th, 2011
12:26 am

O'Brendan

March 20th, 2011
12:35 am

Rawhide, congrats to your tax exemption! And I hope his date went well, too.

Hockeymom92, do you have an update from your son’s game?

R.Stroz, Dvorak will NOT be back next year, in my opinion. So, I wouldn’t fear Modin II, the Sequel, being back for 2011-12. By the way, I suppose we should update “Modin Watch – 2010-11.” Modin was dealt at the trade deadline for a 7th rounder, to Calgary. The terms and conditions of the Over/Under contest were such that Modin must play 56 games AS A THRASHER and score 14 goals, AS A THRASHER. So, everyone who picked “under” won that contest. These are those posters: Jeff97, Spud Webb, Hockey Biltong, Larry, Adam, R.Stroz, Brendan, Red Light, Curly, and Badger Bob. Congratulation to all of you.

In the AJC Point Totals contest, we have a few more eliminees, as the most points available, for Atlanta, are now 92. That means, anyone who had 93 or 94 points is now eliminated. Those posters include: Jack, Cornbread, J.B., the bigharybeast, ben, Smitty, BG33Brown and litz. I already listed those with 95-points, and higher, as eliminated in previous blog entries. At the bottom end of the guesses, there are no new updates, as LAC, at 71-points, still could win, if the Thrashers only get one more point between now and the end of the season. If the Thrashers get 74-points, then the winner of the contest would be Chippers Love Child, with a guess of 75-points.

At 77-points is Badger Bob. At 78-points are Nate and Jethro. At 79-points are Curly and Joe Friday.

Teetering on the verge of elimination are the folks with 91-92 points. One more regulation time loss would remove them from the contest. Those posters include: At 91-points, Mikey, Thrashy Thrashy, Paminski, Alan R., Kracker, lee, Tom Lysiak, Jameson, and goose. At 92-points, are HockeyMom92, Zombie Steve, Putting On The Foil, GaVaHokie, Hockey Biltong, Rhythmpenguin, Viking, Tony C., Simon, five_hole, and Glovesave29.

Good luck to those on the verge of elimination, and those with picks between 80-90 points, of which, there are many!! Thirty (30) posters, actually.

Wayne stuck in AL

March 20th, 2011
12:35 am

Thank you, Atlanta Spirit, for forcing us to play in the NHL with an AHL-level team.

Joe Friday

March 20th, 2011
12:45 am

I’m confused…when is Dvorak gonna Starr fitting in?!?!

Good thing ramsay is coach or wd might of lost 10-1

Joe Friday

March 20th, 2011
12:52 am

Your Atlanta Thrashers…Ramsay, Dvorak, Enstrom, Stapelton…and we wonder why?

Tom

March 20th, 2011
1:01 am

Rawhide: We did not do very well in the tournament but we did win the regular season state title for our division. :) Coached a group of 5th and 6th graders against some much bigger teams.

Lesson – hustle and teamwork will beat size almost all the time.

Tom

March 20th, 2011
1:02 am

And congratulations on your tax exemption doing so well, Mr. Rawhide. You must be very proud.

Brendan

March 20th, 2011
1:11 am

Ya know, when you’re part-Irish, St. Pattie’s Day is more like a whole extended weekend thing!! As someone who is part-Irish, I can get away with saying this. “Give an Irishman a month’s worth of lager, and he’s a dead man.”

R.Stroz, your post was very thought provoking. I got me to thinking … “Just What has been the Thrashers BEST salvage job?”

A) Kari Lehton for Andrew Ladd (via Vishnevskiy, defenseman prospect from Dallas). Did we also get a 5th rounder?? I can’t remember.

B) Hossa – 3 prospects, Angelo Esposito, Daultan Leiveille (#29 overall, 2008), and Eric O’Dell (via Erik Christensen, in a trade with Anaheim), and Colby Armstrong, who walked in free agency, for nothing, to Toronto.

C) Kovalchuk – Johnny Oduya, Radek Dvorak (via Nic Bergfors), Patrice Cormier, and a 1st round pick from NJ (flipped to Chicago for part of the Sopel, Eager, Byfuglien trade, along with Jeremy Morin and Marty Reasoner, as well as flipping 2nd round pick draft position with the Devils).

D) Coburn for Zhitnik (bought out in 2008, now retired). Coburn looked “lost” for most of his time with Atlanta. Of course, then Coach Bob Hartley hardly developed him, at six-minutes per game, for ice time.

E) Patrik Stefan for Niko Kapanen (retired in 2008) and 7th round pick, who turned into Will O’Neill, still in the farm system.

F) Boris Valabik for Mark Stuart, re-signed on a 3-year deal, from Boston Bruins. (This just might be the real winner, if you really think about it. Valabik has never scored an NHL goal and couldn’t crack the Thrashers lineup after six years from his Draft Year.)

G) Rich Peverley (waiver claime off Nashville) for Blake Wheeler, from the Boston Bruins. (This is also a good candidate for a decent salvage job.)

H) Alex Bourret (16th overall pick, 2005 draft,) for Pascal Dupuis and the NYR’s 3rd round pick. That 3rd rounder was later traded to Pittsburgh for Chris Thorburn, recently re-signed on a 3-year deal with Atlanta. Pascal Dupuis was packaged with Hossa, to the Penguins, in 2008. You might consider Colby Armstrong to be what Atlanta got in the exchange with the Penguins. Armstrong was not dealt at last year’s trade deadline, and walked in FREE AGENCY to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Note: Atlanta owned the 8th overall pick in the 2005 draft. They traded it to San Jose for # 41, who became Chad Denny. I don’t rightly know what became of Chad Denny. Atlanta moved back to pick # 12 (via San Jose). At # 12, Atlanta traded with the New York Rangers to fall back to # 16, to land Alex Bourret. In exchange, Atlanta picked up pick # 49, who became Ondrej Pavelec, the Thrashers # 1 goalie. This does not qualify as a “salvage job.” I define “salvage job” as “getting what you can for a pending UFA that won’t re-sign or … simply moving a non-productive, or “fallen out of favor” player, who has, in some way, disappointed the franchise. Those 2005 draft moves were straight up trades. Those picks, by definition, could have not have disappointed anyone by their non-play. Of course, at 8th overall, SJ took Setoguchi. Anze Kopitar and Mark Staal were also selected before the Thrashers would finally make a selection at # 16.

Go ahead, R.Stroz. Cast your vote. Anyone can, really. For me, I think I’m going with “Choice A, Kari for Ladd.” The reason? To me, and perhaps only to me, Andrew Ladd, our Captain, is the biggest impact player we’ve ever gotten back in a “salvage” situation. I reserve the right to change that pick to Blake Wheeler, via Peverley, later on. Peverley was NOT a pending UFA, but after next season, he would have been. And, I think it’s fair to say that Peverley ‘disappointed’ this season, compared to last year. Hopefully, he’ll pick things back up in Boston.

Rawhide

March 20th, 2011
1:18 am

Wayne stuck in AL – If I may, I’d like to take the opportunity of your recent post to get a little something off my chest. Please don’t think I’m picking on you…you just happened to be the latest to opine on something that erks me somewhat.

Name me the AHL talent listed below:

Andrew Ladd…Nik Antropov…Bryan Little…Evander Kane…Radek Dvorak…Blake Wheeler…Chris Thorburn…Alex Burmistrov…Eric Boulton…Rob Schremp…Tim Stapleton…Anthony Stewart…Toby Enstrom…Dustin Byfuglien…Mark Stuart…Ron Hainsey…Johnny Oduya…Chris Mason…Ondrej Pavelec…Zach Bogosian

OK, I’ll agree that Stapleton has played too many games at the NHL level this season. But even he’s played well of late, even scoring some big goals.

Burmistrov? He couldn’t go to the AHL because of age. And what good would it do him back in the Juniors?

Schremp? Borderline…you can cite this one maybe if you wish.

Stewart? Let’s see…he’s scored more goals than Antropov and only 1 less than Little.

And I won’t forget most of the season we saw Modin here. But he’s not an AHLer…he’s a “should be former NHLer”.

Now again…I’m not picking on you, so please don’t take this as a personal shot. I understand your point 100% completely about the Spirit Clowns refusing to spend over the league minimum. The sooner they are out of our lives forever, the better. But I hear and read people say all the time how this is an AHL squad Ramsay has to coach. Sorry, I’m not buying it.

Medicocre to average NHL team…OK, that’ I’ll buy. Stanley Cup condender….no. A team that can only must 2 regulation since early January to mid-March….certainly not.

The problem with this squad isn’t as much “talent” as it is “heart” or “drive” or….if I may…”motivation”. This team tanks too often when something goes awry in a game.

These are all things a coach should be able to deal with, IMHO.

Tom – Thanks…and I am. But give your guy a nice pat on the back for competing an doing his best. I know you’re proud of him too.

Brendan

March 20th, 2011
1:20 am

ZAvalanche, your Avs won the shootout over the Oilers. The bad news? This puts Edmonton solidly ahead of Colorado, for the top pick in the 2011 Draft.

tommy2tone

March 20th, 2011
1:20 am

Enstrom i s the best penalty killer for any opponent. What’s he afraid of, creating a rebound?

Joe McGrath

March 20th, 2011
1:24 am

Ahem…Stewart is a wussy. He is an absolute waste of a position. He never uses his size and he rarely crashes the net. He’s half-assed the entire season. He should be potting about 20 Gs a season. He should have been delt for a draft pick. I’d sign Dvorak over him any day.

Bogo is a third pairing D man and should stay a third pairing until he’s about 24. He sooo slow in processing information. He’s mentally about a half-stride behind and he has fuzzy focus. However, at least I know he does care (from his run in with the gate).

Why the F did Pavs start only to have Mason plugged in? I’m beginning to think Mason should start from here on out.

ZAvalanche

March 20th, 2011
1:39 am

@ Brendan – yeah, it was a pretty good game and Elliott made some great saves. I very much dislike losing and will take a win over the higher potential for a #1 pick any day of the week.

Brendan

March 20th, 2011
2:07 am

ZAvalanche, this ends Colorado’s 10-game skid.

Trixie, I do believe I’m in SPAM filters.

Brendan

March 20th, 2011
2:32 am

Rawhide, very true. I think it’s fair to say that, 34 seconds in, down 1-0, and trailing 3-1, after one period, that … ONCE AGAIN … the team was NOT PREPARED TO PLAY.

Stop. How many times did we say that, all year long? The schedule is 82 games long. But your Atlanta Thrashers were ‘unprepared to play’ at least 18-20 times times. That makes the games they WERE prepared to play, somewhere between 62-64. Well, how does one properly make the playoffs, when they take a fourth of the season off??

Bueller?

Bueller??

Bueller???

That’s right. They can’t. And there’s no excuse for it. One remedy … is to move the non-performing players. Peverley got moved. Bergfors got moved. Modin got moved. An easier and faster remedy … and far less costly, is to fire the coach. Now, I do want to say this much. The team budget was below the floor of the cap. Players like Modin, Stapleton, Kulda … was Nigel Dawes a part of the season this year?, are not really the kind you take to the postseason. And if you do, Heaven Help You!!

So, I’ll agree that the talent level wasn’t predominantly the AHL variety. But neither was it good enough, realistically, to make the playoffs this year. The reason we’ve been able to TALK about playoffs … resides in how weak the Eastern Conference has truly become. Last year, a couple of 88-point teams got in. It’s lookin’ like 88-89 points will be good enough, again, for the # 8 seed. When most years, it takes 93-94 points to be an 8th seed. And that’s 11-12 games over .500, “NHL Style.” Think about it. Eighty-eight (88) points is just six games over .500, for a 82 game schedule! That’s lame and pathetic, to be playoff bound, barring a barrage of injuries to key pieces and depth players.

In a normal year, the Thrashers would have been eliminated, for all intents and purposes, in the 1st week of March. Instead, their mathematical elimination will come in the 4th week of March. God bless Coach Ramsay. I can’t think of too many coaches who would jump into the Thrashers situation. Then again, I suppose, everything’s a bit EASIER … when you KNOW your bosses, and roomed with them, as NHL players. Dudley knows Ramsay from Buffalo Sabre days. Dudley knows Waddell from minor league days. It’s easier to accept a position, knowing that you’ll be given some preferential treatment. Is Don Waddell quick to fire Dudley? No. Is Dudley hot to trot to fire Craig Ramsay? No. Is the ownership, such as it is, ready to pay people NOT TO WORK for them??? No!!! Look how long they’ve kept Waddell here, blackmail accusations aside, given that … to fire him … they’d still have to PAY him. Now, did they have to renew Waddell for 3 years, back in 2008, after the team went on an 11-4-1 tear in relief of Hartley’s 0-6-0 start? No. But, the bottom line is, they did. And got stuck with him. If they’d been an ownership not primarily interested in basketball and litigation, they would have fired Waddell, long ago.

Nothing noteworthy will change, until new ownership is found. I don’t buy into relocation theory non-sense. It’s ridiculous to move a team out of Atlanta, when all that’s needed, all that’s EVER BEEN NEEDED, was ‘committed ownership’ to make this franchise work. Selling out 38 of 41 home games in 1999-2000 is all the proof anyone objectively needs to see where the level of hockey interest is, if there is a perception by FANS and players alike, that the ownership is trying to win, or build a winner.

hockeymom92

March 20th, 2011
7:14 am

UGH – what a night. T.E.’s game was almost as bad as Thrashers – we lost 6-2 and we are now a bit worried how we will compete at the Nationals in 2 weeks. Perhaps we could have a bit of sympathy as we played a college team on ice that was more like a lake. I know this is just an excuse – maybe we should get Ramsey to do our post game review…..

Rawhide – massive congrats on your son’s day – at least someone had a great day! Now, just from whom did he inherit these smarts?? Remember this is a mom asking! :)

At least as of now, winter is over (kinda like the Thrashers season) – Happy First Day of Spring everyone!!

KLS1

March 20th, 2011
7:52 am

Look at how buffalo passed the puck, created lanes and generated wide open chances. We are lucky to connect on a pass for a one timer from the point.

This game felt more like the real thrashers than the Philly game…but I was hopeful.

Bogo, my god…he was completely out matched, I felt bad for him. One piece of advice zach, when you are getting outplayed and do not know what to do, hit somebody…it slows the game down.

The Real Thrash

March 20th, 2011
8:02 am

All that talk before the game meant squat!

Matt from MN

March 20th, 2011
8:15 am

EA

March 20th, 2011
8:18 am

That game was an all time low for Bogo. One step forward, three steps back with him. No excuses. Captain Ladd was -3 as well. If we lose by competing it is much easier to take. That was just sad.

EA

March 20th, 2011
8:24 am

Pavs and Mason stood very llittle chance of stopping those goals when there was NO DEFENSE in front of them last night.

Bozogosian

March 20th, 2011
8:40 am

Before the game, me and the home boys got a little wasted. Could anyone tell?

Kovy's Agent

March 20th, 2011
8:52 am

So glad I passed on yet another offer to buy discounted lower bowl season tix for next year. You see Spirit, you keep your wallet closed, so will I. March 31 is just around the corner and opening day for baseball, so these last 10 or so games for the Thrash should go down in relative, and justified, obscurity.

Marcus Valdes

March 20th, 2011
9:01 am

Nice post Bill. I didn’t get to watch the game other than by hitting the “refresh” button on my phone’s browser. I’m glad I didn’t get to see it live. Our team is still developing/rebuilding and hopefully new ownership will take care of some of our fundamental flaws. I still hope for a miracle, but wonder what we would actually do with a playoff berth.

Red Light

March 20th, 2011
9:03 am

Russ: You made the strongest point of all! Some pay attention but nobody should have expected anything different.

In 2003-04, the Thrashers were up nine points on eventual SC champion Tampa Bay, Dec. 26, 2003. They were 19-14-5 and had 43 points. What came next? The Thrashers went 2-16-3. See ya!

In 2005-06, the Thrashers were 23-18-6 with 52 points as of Jan. 18, 2006 , and even though they were already 16 points behind the Canes, they were still in the playoff hunt. Then, they lost 7 straight. See ya!

On Feb. 15, 2008, the Thrashers were up 2 points on Washington and had just beaten them two days earlier and now had a two-point division lead. After hanging in there with a 29-27-4 record and 62 points, the Thrashers went 2-11-4. See ya!

On March 4, 2010, despite dealing Kovy and Salmela, the Thrashers were 29-27-4, with 62 points, and although they trailed Washington by 28 points for the Division lead, they were down only three points to Philadelphia and were tied withe the Rangers and Canadiens. The Thrashers then lost six straight! See ya.

January 5, 2011. Thrashers were 22-15-6, had 50 points and led the Canes by 8 points, the Sabres by 11, the Rangers by one point and the Maple Leafs by 16! Since then they have gone 8-15-6.

And, if you really weren’t paying attention, there were four different coaches (Hartley, Waddell, Anderson and Ramsay) and I’m sure there are others who will fill you in on the rest of missing pieces.

Rawhide

March 20th, 2011
9:16 am

hockeymom92 – Tough break…but maybe their coach can get ‘em properly motivated for the Nationals. Good luck to them.

Joe McGrath – Stewart runs hot and cold to me. There are times when he’s hot and plays well. There are just as many times as he plays…well…much the way you described.

Red Light - As per usual, excellent work digging up those numbers. Perplexing to say the least.

The only things I would add to it would be that in the latter stages of 2005-06, Bob Hartley coached that team back to within a Mike Dunham ‘phone-in” job of possibly making the playoffs….90 points is what they finished with that year, was it?

And the next year the Thrashers did again make the playoffs…again under Hartley’s leadership.

Chris Buffalo

March 20th, 2011
9:17 am

Seriously look at your team….it’s pathetic…our AHL Portland team has more talent. You people actually think the Thrashers are a playoff team??? Guess not, right?

oh btw…the reference to the snowman is a pathetic jab @ Buffalo. We love our City and weather up, and so you know, NYC, Philly, Boston, Jersey, and other upstate Citites like Syracuse, Albany, and Rochester all got more snow – about double than Buffalo this year. So we just smirk when uninformed Southerners make ignorant assumptions. Although I will take snow anyday over 95 degree heat with 100% humidity…talk about discomfort

Rawhide

March 20th, 2011
9:20 am

Chris Buffalo – Actually, the snowman reference had nothing to do with the weather in Buffalo. It’s a golf term used when someone scores an “8″ on a hole. And if you took any other reference to “snow” as a dig towards Buffalo…well, I think you are seriously reading into the post something that’s just not there.

The Thrashers played awful in a “big game” and the Sabres totally took advantage of it, the way a playoff team should, and dropped an “8″ spot on us.

But thanks for playing anyway….

Ward

March 20th, 2011
9:32 am

“Wait til next year”……the sad truth, again, for us as Thrasher fans.The team’s current roster is incredibly fragile at crunch time(s). The ownership is big piece, but players on the ice are the ones making it happen with motivation from the coaches.They need to learn from what Devils are doing with coaching AND playing with intensity.We don’t belong in cup play this year.

jimbo

March 20th, 2011
9:37 am

An earlier poster called it an “EPIC FAILURE”. Wrong, it’s an EXPECTED FAILURE. Clueless Craig has absolutely no motivational skills. Bye, Bye Hockey Whisperer. Heard Boucher, Tampa Bay coach talk about creating excitement for team rather than running through drills. That is exactly what we need- SOMEONE WHO UNDERSTANDS MOTIVATION AND GETS RESULTS. We do not need a COMATOSE COACH.

Sage of Bluesland

March 20th, 2011
9:43 am

“…And, if you really weren’t paying attention, there were four different coaches (Hartley, Waddell, Anderson and Ramsay) and I’m sure there are others who will fill you in on the rest of missing pieces.”

For those placing all of the blame on the coach, please read Red Light’s excellent submission above. Those who think this roster has legitimate NHL-talent (across the board) and that “all we have to do” is fire the coach is living in Joe-Bob-Friday-Revisionist-Historian delusion. See, he will have known “all along” about three years from now…

The chef isn’t the weakest link, folks…Look at the kitchen and the ingredients first. It’s just that simple.

Whoever subsidizes this embarrassing incompetence is part of the problem. But, Don Waddell truly thanks you for his support…

Red Light

March 20th, 2011
10:01 am

The Phoenix Coyotes aren’t exactly on firm financial footing either, but there they are again making their way into the Western Conference playoffs with a record of 39-23-11 (currently 4th) and somehow manage to spend $8 million more than the Thrashers, and their average ticket distribution is 1,500 less per night than Atlanta’s. That’s probably the biggest reason for condemnation.

Since finishing 30 points ahead of Phoenix in the standings during the 2006-07 season, the Thrashers are -51 to the Coyotes point total during the past four seasons.

So, while the money is a problem, it’s not the lone problem.

Thanks for playing along Sage!

B. Thenet

March 20th, 2011
10:17 am

LOL at Buffalo fan not knowing what putting up a snowman means, while calling southerners ignorant.

Well played Buffalo fan, well played.

Michael B. Shapiro

March 20th, 2011
10:35 am

Rawhide. I’ll take that challenge. A. Stewart. Absolutely friggin’ invisible the second half of the season. Never gets anything in terms of “bad” attention from the Rammer despite some pretty horrible play. Nik? Still recovering from surgery and should’ve seen the press box buffet line several times this season for doggin’ it worse than Hossa his last year.
I like Burmy but he’s got some very rough edges due to his youth. We’ve brought him along very quickly in our desperation. He’s played with a constantly revolving group of linemates, which hasn’t helped.
Oh, and AHL talent? THE COACH. I think it was Wheeler who said it best….Rammer was the ASSISTANT Coach everyone in Boston liked. That’s what he should be again. Fails to adapt, fails to work with individual players on their repeated gaffes. A NHL calibre coach would hold ALL players accountable and adapt as circumstances require. Even Rammer admitted that for the first half of the season he was playing Bogo wrong and not letting him skate. 41 friggin’ games to figure that out? Not my type of coach, not by a longshot.