Thrashers prepare for final week of frustrating season

Over the course of the past several weeks, there have been many different words Thrashers fans have used to describe the way this 2010-11 season has turned out. Some have even been fit to print here. But Nik Antropov’s comments following Saturday’s 3-2 loss in Boston, one that officially eliminated them postseason play, seems to contain the word most appropriate.

“It’s frustrating, that’s the feeling right now”, the Thrashers forward said after the game. “Nothing else but frustration.”

The key word there would be frustrating…or frustration, take your pick.

Indeed Antropov’s words could accurately sum up the feeling after losing yet another close game. They led 2-1 early in the second period after Evander Kane’s 19th goal of the season. However, the Thrashers failed to convert their early success into a win.

Boston Bruins' Daniel Paille scores after intercepting a Zach Bogosian pass. The score tied the game in the second period. Another Bogosian turnover led to the Bruins' game winning goal in the third (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

Boston Bruins' Daniel Paille scores after intercepting a Zach Bogosian pass. The score tied the game in the second period. Another Bogosian turnover led to the Bruins' game winning goal in the third (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

After intercepting a weak outlet pass from Zach Bogosian behind Ondrej Pavelec’s net, Danielle Paille knotted the score at two-all just under five minutes later. At the time Boston was killing off a delay of game penalty by former Thrasher Shane Hnidy.

Yeah…frustrating.

Then in the third, Bogosian once again gift wrapped the puck for the Bruins with another turnover and fellow defenseman Johnny Oduya had little option but to take down the charging Michael Ryder. However, he converted on the penalty shot and the Bruins had the 3-2 margin they would eventually win by.

Bogosian had an up close and personal vantage point for all three Boston goals and his –26plus/minus rating is “tops” on the team in that stat. Antropov is next on the current roster with a –14, (Rich Peverley was a –16 before being traded in February to Boston).

Yessir-ee, Zach has had a frustrating season to say the least.

But the “F” word could also sum up how the second half of this season has played out for the Thrashers. After playing to a 22-15-6 record and 50 points after 43 games played…and stop me if you’ve heard this one before… they failed to take advantage of that success and stumbled from that point on. Since the 3-2 win in south Florida on January 5, they have gone a disappointing 11-18-6 since with just 4 regulation wins in those 35 games.

The Thrashers will now prepare to finish off the remaining four games in this frustrating campaign. And although they themselves are now mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, all four remaining matchups will have some impact on others who remain in the thick of the playoff race. None more so than the two scheduled later this week. Thursday and Friday night they’ll face the New York Rangers and Carolina Hurricanes. Both are scratching and clawing to earn a spot in this spring’s great hunt for Lord Stanley’s Cup.

Following their shootout win in Philly, the Rangers have 89 points with 3 games left to play. Buffalo defeated Carolina in overtime, giving the Sabres 90 and the Canes 87.

As for Atlanta, no matter the outcome of this week’s games they’ll finish in fourth place in the Southeast Division. They can finish no higher than 10th in the conference and no lower than 12th. The most points they can achieve is 86 if they take all 8 available in the final four games.

Last season they were second in the southeast and tenth in the conference with an 83-point season.

Looking down the road, they’ll own a draft pick somewhere in the range of 6th to 8th overall in June’s NHL entry draft. After that, it’s free agent signing season beginning on July 1, then we wait for training camp and preseason in the fall.

One of those exhibition games will be against the Ottawa Senators in Conception Bay South, Newfoundland. The two will play there after that was named Kraft Hockeyville 2011. It’ll be the second time the Thrashers have participated one of these games. Prior to the 2007 season, they beat the New York Islanders 4-3 in overtime in North Bay, Ontario.

Until then, though, they’ll just be finishing out this frustrating season. But at least the Thrashers will have a chance to share some of that frustration with the Rangers and Hurricanes.

139 comments Add your comment

World Be Free

April 4th, 2011
3:31 pm

Tom-I am trying not to read into anything I hear from Canada about the Thrashers. No offense to my Canadian friends (or relatives) but we all know most of the “Thrasher news” out of Canada is agenda-based. Not sure about the Newfoundland thing.

Tom

April 4th, 2011
3:32 pm

Rawhide, I hope you are right. I have been working on a marketing project the past couple of weeks that is built around a hook that changes the conversation midstream. My conspiracy tin foil hat might be on a little too tight. :)

Hockey Biltong

April 4th, 2011
3:40 pm

Dvorak is gone… he can’t stay healthy for a long enough time. I think Boults has regressed a bit this year. In puck play, that is. So we might need a new enforcer. Cooke does not impress me.What about Neil from Ottawa?
Stewart needs puck handling drills.. all that speed and no finesse.
Zach needs one more year and it better be good or I am done with him too.
I feel that Arthropod should work on skating drills now that his hip is better. He could be good trade bait, just as he is recovering from surgery so long ago.
Ladd needs to be resigned, although it has been very quiet on that front for the past two months.
And really , we do need a top scorer. Not just all the other contributors.
I believe the NJ. Devils are the team with only one 20 goal scorer, to answer an earlier posted question.

Cornbread

April 4th, 2011
3:53 pm

I have no problems criticizing players or play when that criticism is both accurate and warranted. I feel like I have defended Bogo all year from the “trade him now” crowd whom I believe have been wrong and irrational with their arguments against a very talented 20 year old kid. And much of their analyses of “bad plays” has been flat out wrong. I have no problem trading him but, in the very unlikely scenario that should occur, you better get what the Thrashers need most in return – a proven two-way playmaking first line center with 3 or more years left on his contract.

As for Bogo’s play on Saturday, the short-handed goal was not Paille “intercepting a weak outlet pass from ZB behind OP’s net”. Stating such makes it sound like Bogo served up a special delivery pizza which clearly was not the case. It was likely a set give-and-go play with Buff coming hard from around the net. Bogo was not behind the net in fact he was above the goal line. He saw Buff coming who was likely calling for the puck. Bogo gave him a touch pass which was deflected slightly by Paille causing the puck to take a fluky hop over Buff’s stick in the face-off circle who was at full speed and could not stop quick enough to retrieve it. This could clearly be seen in the replays.

Paille created it off of a fore-check and it was a perfect shot. But he did get lucky to have that one end up where it did. If Buff does not have the puck jump over his stick, he is off to the races on what would likely be a 5 on 3. It should be noted that the reason the puck was where it was to begin with was off of 3 great plays by Buff, Bogo, and Ladd on the PP. Buff fed Bogo a great pass and he fired a hard shot on net only to have it deflected wide and out of the zone by Ladd. Buff and Bogo have not been out there together on the PP much this season. It’s usually Enstrom out there with both of them. With him out, unfamiliarity likely contributed to the broken play. Also, Bogo was not given a turnover on this play by the official scorekeeper.

Now being a defensive defenseman, I don’t like to make such plays. But, touch passes like that are made all game long. They are high risk high reward. I would have preferred Buff stay behind the goal line for an over pass or for Little to get on the half wall for a better outlet instead of coming down the center. But, these are D-men who are two-way guys, Buff being a complete offensive D-man. They are going to make plays like this especially on the PP and when they work are a thing of beauty that make highlight reels. This time they made it but for the wrong reasons. Kind of like the whole season went. Frustrating isn’t it?

As for Bogo’s plus minus, “his assist on Buff’s goal was the only reason he was a -2 and not a -3″ is not accurate. He was not awarded a plus because his perfect feed for Buff’s one-timer occurred on the PP where +/- is not awarded unless a goal goes against the team with the man advantage like it did on Paillie’s goal. He was not awarded a minus, nor was anyone else, on the penalty shot goal.

Bogo was credited with a turnover off of the play that led to the goal which he rightly deserved. The ironic thing is he was doing what he does best, skate with the puck out of the zone. He got trapped and tried to flip the puck in only to have it “intercepted” in this case. A weak play to be sure.

As for the first goal he was “up close for”, not his fault. He was in correct position behind the net for a reverse from Enstrom. Instead, a “hard” play was called. This could clearly be heard. Enstrom rimmed it hard up the boards to Kane only to have it “intercepted” by Bergeron. Kane got beat along the boards when he had clear position over Bergeron to begin with who then threw a bouncing puck towards the net. Bogo was in good position to get that bouncing puck and he had it go off his stick a couple of times. Pavs was also there who eventually let it squirt under him for a gift tap in by Recchi. Two centers were on the ice at the time, Antro and Burmi. I would have liked to have seen Antro take up the back door man. Burmi could have done a better job taking away the shooting lane. But, the play should never have occurred if Kane does not allow Bergeron to so easily beat him along the boards.

Four goals Bogo was a factor in. One was a great assist, one a bad turnover, one a turnover by a team mate, and another a fluky bouncing puck. He also had 6 attempted shots, 1 hit and 1 blocked shot in 23:35 ice time. He was actively involved in the game which he has been all year. Some games, especially those in the second half of the season, he has played great and gets very little credit for, or worse, is instead erroneously criticized like his previous game in Philly.

His -26 is ugly and as a defenseman there is no sugarcoating that. I’m just going to say that he’s a talented 20 year old kid playing big top 50 minutes in the NHL against the world’s best. He is better and more experienced than both Kulda and Postma who would never be put into the all situations role he is performing. He will learn and improve in the coming years. The kid can flat out skate, fire rockets, and run people over. He has improved greatly this year in holding on to the puck or making the correct good first pass in his end instead of firing it up the boards only to have it turned over. He is now getting the experience that will serve him 3, 5, or even 8 years down the road when he will still be a young D-man and likely a monster on the blue line. Getting rid of Bogosian now and giving to another team the future benefits of the Thrashers’ hard labors would be a travesty and a far bigger mistake than getting rid of Coburn.

Brendan

April 4th, 2011
3:55 pm

Midfield, I’m not married to the Cooke idea. Thirty-two years of age isn’t where I want to add players, especially since he’ll be looking for some security, probably a 3-year deal. And we saw what Coach Ramsay’s response is to those who thumb their noses at the league office. The response is accepting a 5th round pick for Ben Eager, to San Jose.

Red Light, excellent Redlight report. Very nice blog.

Cornbread

April 4th, 2011
3:56 pm

Brendan I enjoy reading what you write and agree with much of it but getting Cooke is just crazy talk.

Hoof Arted

April 4th, 2011
4:05 pm

Red Light, great article. Thanks for sharing it. There are some insightful comments to be found in it and I agree that the UFA talent seems down from years past. Dudley’s going to have his work cut out for him this summer trading for some much needed help.

Your posting here and other writers as well is another reason I like this blog so much. There are some fine writers who share their pieces here and BlogMaster doesn’t seem to mind sharing the stage. That’s waht helps make this the…

Best….Thrashers….Blog…..EVER!

Cornbread, hate to disagree with you about Bogosian but he stunk the joint up Saturday. I won’t go as far as saying he is responsible for all 3 Boston goals but he sure played a part in them. He’s had a terrible season and I can only hope somebody in the organization can help him during the offseason. He’s still got way too much upside and potential.

ManUp

April 4th, 2011
4:07 pm

I shudder to think where the Thrashers would be right now without Pavlec in goal. He bailed out the team so many times.

Smoothie

April 4th, 2011
4:15 pm

That defense of Bogey’s gaffe on the PP is a big load of hogwash. While I understand your POV in defending Zach as he is still only 20, and there are times when he is the victim of misfortune, that dumb pass to Buff never should have happened. He could have gone to the outside up the wall as Ladd was coming back (so was Little). Buff shares in the blame for not staying back, but both forwards were coming back and Bogo never looked up ice. When he received the pass, he needlessly kept skating backwards from the top of the circle all the way to the corner making himself more vulnerable to Paille. Buff probably should not have moved up the ice so quickly as he helped put Bogo in a pickle, but a tricky situation was made much worse by trying a high-risk touch pass. I understand what you’re saying, but Zach is hardly absolved from any guilt on the play as the pass was unwarranted and unnecessary, especially if both forwards were coming back to start the rush back up the ice as a group with support. Perhaps it was gross ambition on Buff’s part, but Zach should be able to recognize when to move the puck up the ice or away from Paille (opposite corner vacated by Buff thus giving them time to regroup at least) in that situation. Both guys were too cavalier.

Red Light

April 4th, 2011
4:24 pm

Hoof, Brendan, sisu: Thanks!

cousin Eddie

April 4th, 2011
4:25 pm

well said Cornbread. He is only 20 and playing against the best in the world. He is going to make mistakes and I have seen a progression in the way he has played. Be patient. I’m sure most Thrasher fans have learned to patient given the way the past 11 seasons have went!

Brendan

April 4th, 2011
4:32 pm

Rawhide, thank you for keeping this blog going all year ’round. It really does make all the difference. My favorite time of the year, aside from the Fall, when the World Series takes place and Hockey, Football, and Basketball are all back in full swing, is right about now!

Yep, the final games of the regular season and the start of THE REAL SEASON. These next 2.5 weeks, where we have eight (8) playoff series happening simultaneously … is just … my idea of heaven. These are the games that truly matter. These series are what the Draft was about 4-5 years ago. These series are what the FRENZY the last few Julys were all about. These series are fruit of what decisions were or were not made … during the trade deadline. It’s fun to watch it all unfold. I’ll have my two adopted teams in the hunt this year, Phoenix and Los Angeles. I don’t know if I can consider Nashville to be a rotating adopted team, since I’ve just come to accept them as my favorite team in the Western Conference. Any combination of Nashville, Phoenix, and/or LAK having any success this year … makes the whole playoffs so worthwhile for me. Watching the Coyotes struggle, and make it, through ownership adversity … watching the Kings slowwwwwly build this thing … year after year … it’s time to see the long-awaited benefits of all that. Watching the Predators being intelligently constructed by GM David Poile, on a low budget, should give us all hope that it can happen here, with the right people in charge of the Thrashers.

In the East, I know I’m gonna get a ration of it, but I like the Carolina Hurricanes. I know. We’re required to hate them, as division rivals. But I like GM Jim Rutherford. I like Paul Maurice as a Head Coach. God help me, I even like Carolina’s fans. For me, I hope Buffalo gets 7th and the ‘Canes 8th. Not that I dislike the NYR, because I don’t, but I just don’t see them as having a strong Center or quality blueliners … to have done enough to be a playoff team. To me, the Rangers are Henrik Lundqvist and Gaborik and not much more. Though, I certainly do like Stepan, Parenteau, Ansimov, Callahan, and Dubinsky. Are these some Tier I guys???? Alllrighteee, then. I’ll wish the Rangers luck if they make it in. With Lundqvist in net, who knows? You never know, come playoff time, when some goalie will pull a Dryden or a Giguere, and carry their team to the Finals.

My preseason picks were the Capitals/Penguins in the East, with Washington prevailing, and San Jose vs. Vancouver in the West. I think I picked SJ in preseason, because I seem to recall my runner-up pick for the Cup Finals was Penguins-Sharks, if Washington lost. I do like Vancouver’s chances this year. It’s been quite a ride for them. They get the 2010 Olympics, which Canada wins, in overtime, on a goal by the NATIONAL HERO, Sidney Crosby, against America’s hero, Ryan Miller. Now the Canucks are having their greatest regular season in their history. Every win and point sets a new franchise record. They do have the Presidenty’s Trophy clinched, for the 1st time in franchise history. They do have a goalie, in Luongo, that has the panache to carry them through to the Stanley Cup Championship this year. Luongo does have that Gold Medal, as well, for Team Canada. His resume is impressive.

And what about Detroit? No slouches there. Is Jimmy Howard ready to hoist the silver chalice?? That’s why we play the games. Johan Frazen, Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk, Brian Rafalski, role players like Helm and Cleary and Abdelkader … it’s hard to make a case why the Red Wings CAN’T WIN it all, this very season. Why not Detroit??

What about Dany Heatley’s quest for the silver chalice? Do the Sharks suck? I’d say, “no.” But their window is starting to close. Niemi has the Cup, from last season, so we know he can do it. Heatley, Marleau, Thornton, Goc, Boyle, Logan Couture. It’s a deep roster. It’s good enough to win it all. For the Sharks, they’ve never reached the Finals before. They’ve been to the CF twice before, including last season. Maybe this is the year … we’re all forced to watch Heatley’s toothless grin, holding the Cup over his head.

Last, my pick to win the Cup, however misplaced, is the Washington Capitals. I’ve felt, for quite some time, that GM George McPhee has done an outstanding job with the club. The knock on the Caps is that they’re not tough enough for the playoffs–that they’re built for regular season success, only. We’ll soon find out. I gotta think … that the league offices of the NHL have a vested interest in seeing a marquee player like Ovechkin win the Cup. Crosby’s done it already, so it’s Alex’s turn. Folks, a Capitals win does speak well of the Southeast Division, where it comes time to make arguments over how weak or strong a division really is. If Carolina edges out the Rangers for the 8th and final, that makes Washington, Tampa Bay, and Carolina … all Southeast division teams, in the hunt. Go ‘Canes/Caps in the East!

james c.

April 4th, 2011
4:34 pm

10,000-12,000 people buying 2011-2012 season tickets out of a metro area of close to 6,000,000 people would certainly put a lot of fears to rest.Is that realistic…I hope so.

Rawhide

April 4th, 2011
4:34 pm

Cornbread – First of all, you are indeed 100% correct about the difference between the -2 and -3. Buff’s was a PP goal and the PS goal doesn’t count against him. I’ll strike that in the post above.

Respecting your right to take issue with my observation…I guess we’ll just have to agree to disagree about that shorthanded goal gift wrapped by Bogosian. When you are making a pass like that from behind the goal it simply has to go tape-to-tape. He had to have seen Paille there.

…shrugs…

As for the third goal, even Ramsay called him out for that one. And I didn’t even mention his play on that first goal.

Really, no matter how you look at it, Zach has been a train wreck this season. About the nicest way I can sum up his year is that he hasn’t matured and developed much since his rookie year.

Bogosian has gone from 9 goals, 11 assists and a +11 in 47 games to 10 goals, 13 assists and –18 in 81 games last season to 5 goals, 12 assists –26 so far after 67 games played this year.

Regardless, my friend, you and I totally agree on the fact that the Thrashers do not need to give up on this kid at this point in his career. He’s yet to even see his 21st birthday for cryin’ out loud. He needs some one-on-one attention from someone who can help him and if he can get that, who knows. He can really be great.

But I’ll add that if we are looking at the same type of “progress” from Zach this time next year…the “he’s still young, give him time” defense will have some serious holes punched in it.

Brendan – You know…you’re just going to have to repost all that again next week. :grin:

Brendan

April 4th, 2011
4:37 pm

Cornbread, all to the discussion that Cooke will be putting out PK unit out there, all the time. Like I said, I’m not married to it. But I do think Cooke is a decent player, if he could just do a better job of controlling himself. He does have skill. Sean Avery has some skill. What’s he known for? Yes, being “stupid.” And tactless. And probably a few more things, which we won’t get into here.

Truthfully, Cooke here on a 1-year contract, where we can stash him in the AHL, if we don’t like what we see, or where some other team could claim him on re-entry waivers … might not be so bad. It’s high risk, is the problem. Who wants to take that risk? If we could be assured that he’d behave like a choir boy, we’d probably love the idea of Matt Cooke. How likely is ‘angelic’ behavior out of M. Cooke? Riiight.

Midfield

April 4th, 2011
4:42 pm

Choir boy? We already have our fair share of those.

Brendan

April 4th, 2011
4:45 pm

Rawhide is exactly right. This is the correct way to argue some point of discussion. Rationally. Calmly. Even keeled. Respectful of dissenting opinions, etc. No one owns the truth. The truth is what it is. Rawhide doesn’t insult people. What a good blog master!

Rawhide

April 4th, 2011
4:52 pm

Brendan – SHUT UP, YOU IDIOT!!! You do NOT know what you are TALKING ABOUT!!!!

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

Brendan

April 4th, 2011
5:07 pm

Midfield, refs see that elbow head north of Cooke’s waist, and whoop! Arm in the air. NHL suspension committee springs into action.

litz

April 4th, 2011
6:24 pm

I think the best thing about picking up Cooke for a song is we can stash him in the AHL and no longer have to worry about him steamrolling our players.

Cliff Fletcher

April 4th, 2011
7:00 pm

cooke is a better player than some of you are giving him credit for. he is not an enforcer because he wears a shield. sign him and put him on the 3rd line, not the 4th line-he can play especially if he dumps the foolishness.

my take on bogosian-
give him a video of how luke schenn is doing it in toronto. schenn is into the basics and he is doing it well, very well. he plays his position, rarely gives up the puck and he is one of the best hitters in the league. he does a few things well, which is what zach has to concentrate on moving forward.

Cliff Fletcher

April 4th, 2011
7:05 pm

bogosian is trying to do more than he is prepared to do t this point in his career. you put him on the market and haf the league will be calling, or more.

LAC

April 4th, 2011
7:37 pm

bogosian is a complete BUST. He has had THREE years to develop, look at Drew Doughtry in LA. A million times better than Little zach. How many, I repeat, How many times has zach cost us this season ? How many ??? Answer, Too many to count. He is LAZY, a floater, Out of Position
80% of the time, cannot be physical and most of all Cannot Read plays on defense.
He makes Terrible passes and from my viewpoint, has regressed since his first game here.

He should be benched the rest of the season and traded or released during the summer, he is simply NOT a positive asset anymore in Atlanta. Don’t need to hear all this he’s 20 years old…
There are coaches coaching him and they teach as well as coach. He does NOT Learn from them, has not in three seasons. He has cost us, I would say… 6-8 games this season. THINK where we Would be with an additional 14 points, we would have 92 right now and I lay a LOT of this season’s failure on zach bogosian. He is a Cancer on the team, and Paul Postma can fill the position left after zach’s TRADE with NO problem. Please look back folks, zach may be 20, but he is a first round pick and another in a LONG LONG line of first-round BUSTS for Atlanta.

Dvorak has also really preformed since coming here ????? Zero Zero Zero 34 years old, a FLOP of a trade if I ever saw one… Do us ALL a favor DUD dudley, resign so a real NHL GM can come in here and revamp this team, and take Liar waddell with you please !

NHL Ready

April 4th, 2011
8:15 pm

Bogo supporters.I am sick of the 20 year old crap. If thats the case he shouldn’t be playing so many mintues. It comes down to Coaching and calling out your players if they don’t perform. This Coach says we had a great game & love the effort and lets all go out for Ice Cream. But the fact is we lost another the game. Remember this!!! This is the NHL not the AHL or ECHL but the NHL. You should be good enough to play here and if your not you don’t play. I am really sick of losing oh I should say Fustrated. Thanks Nik for your slow no effort season for such words of wisdom. New Owners and New Coach and a few new players and we may have something. Same Coach same players still equals crap in my eyes.

sisu

April 4th, 2011
8:33 pm

The first goal was all on Pavs in my opinion, he let’s a puck going through his 5 hole. The team has only 1 game where the goalie “stole” a game…

LAC

April 4th, 2011
9:25 pm

NHL Ready, 100% Correct !

glovesave29

April 4th, 2011
9:36 pm

LAC – Kings fans are throwing Drew Doughty under the bus for his play this last season. Guess it’s always greener on the other side…

Bogo was horrible this season. If we follow your suggestion and trade him for a 7th rounder does this mean you bite your tongue from hereforth when he turns into a good steady D-man? Thrashers have failed him much more than he’s failed the Thrashers…

1976 – Montreal Olympics
1977 – Canadiens win Cup

1988 – Calgary Olympics
1989 – Flames win Cup

2010 – Vancouver Olympics
2011- Canucks????

KLS1

April 4th, 2011
9:54 pm

Gotta make a stand Thrashers fans. I don’t think we need to release Bogo, but don’t defend minus 26 as a third year top 5 pick.

If he were on any other team he would be out on a rail…but we just keep waiting for him to turn into Paul Coffey.

And the real opportunity cost for waiting to make a move is that we are not developing our other prospects into NHL players. If Kulda got 30 of Bogos games this year he would be ready to start effectively next season. But right now there are still question marks on both players ability to play at this level.

KLS1

April 4th, 2011
10:01 pm

By the way, genious move to black out the next 3 games…its almost like they knew we wouldn’t be in a playoff race.

What twits run this organization…

KLS1

April 4th, 2011
10:08 pm

Just re-read my posts, sorry for the negativity!

I really love this team and enjoy watching them…just get a little creased this team of year when I look back on the season and realize we could be in the playoffs if we had done a few little things better over the course of the season.

NHL Ready

April 4th, 2011
10:19 pm

LAC

April 5th, 2011
12:05 am

Glove, I believe it ALL goes back to developing players. Chicago could give a crap about the overall development of Atlanta players. I would LOVE to know how many times our GM has called to check the progress of Atlanta owned players ???

Watch Oil Change on the NHL network sometime and see how the develop players at Oklahoma City and they are in constant contact with the GM & Coaches there. They are developing players
to play the Edmonton system and teaching. Chicago does neither and we just throw players there and say PLAY, that’s it.

Than Chicago relationship MUST END. We need a team we control and develop our own players, not just fill a roster with prospects, just so they can play.

That is one reason zach is terrible, and another why when we NEED players to come in for whatever reason, and contribute, but ours seem never to do that.

I hope someone can talk some common sense into the next OWNER, if the team stays here, which is now 50/50, put an AHL team in Birmingham and let it work like a top level farm team should !!!!

R. Stroz

April 5th, 2011
12:16 am

For those of us who believe Zach Bogosian could use a good mentor, may I make a suggestion?

HIS AGENT

At this point you may think I have lost my mind until you see who Bogosian’s agent is:

Take quick guess……

Did you answer BOBBY ORR? Yes, that’s right Bogosian’s agent is Bobby Orr, yes that Bobby Orr. If the Thrashers organization had a brain in one of their collective heads, they have the answer right in front of them. Any bets as to whether the Thrashers organization finds a way to properly use this resource to everyone’s advantage?

Brendan

April 5th, 2011
12:40 am

Can we wave a magic wand and make cats less curious? Can we wave a magic wand and make two year olds less bossy and hellacious? Can we wave a magic wand … and make all 20 year old defensemen into the caliber of Ray Bourque?

Sadly, we cannot. This is why … taking a defensemen or a goalie inside of the lottery draft … is an exercise in PATIENCE. It’s times like these … the Webster’s Dictionary and its handy definitions come back into play. Patience … is a virtue. It’s also a luxury that the Atlanta Thrashers do not have. If Bogosian had spent more time in juniors, then developed through the AHL … to the NHL next season, or thereabouts, in 2010-11 or 2011-12, as he development warranted … guess what? Yep, he might not be being undressed and exposed at the NHL-level. Rushing players into the NHL straight from the draft, ready for this, ruins them. As in, “you’re not supposed to do it.” All good things in their DUE time. Bogosian never got “due time.” He got rushed. He got exposed. He’s 20. And I don’t see any magic wands lying around, to go point at him, to convert him into Niedermayer, Stevens, Pronger, Lidstrom, Daneyko, Rafalski, or Larry Robinson or Borje Salming.

In some rare cases, defensemen can make the leap straight away. But it’s risky to even try it. Glad it worked for Drew Doughty, who is the player I wanted all along in the 2008 Draft, if you’ll recall my debates with Ranallo10, who assured me that Bogosian would be every bit as good, if not better, than Doughty. Ranallo asked me why I saw Doughty as so much better, when they were essentially ranked the SAME, I said … “Look at the comments by Central Scouting, Ranallo. They use words like ‘intelligent,’ and ‘good decisions with the puck under pressure.’” I argued, at the time, that every, single player housed within lottery draft consideration, by definition, would be a GOOD SKATER, a GOOD PASSER, and a GOOD PLAYMAKER. If they weren’t these things, then why would they be in consideration for the lottery draft???? So, yes. I look to statements about a player’s intelligence and maturity as being highly relevant in their overall assessment of the player.

Now, is Bogosian a “bust?” It’s too early to say something like that. What we do know is … he won’t command a lot in terms of a trade. Which means what? We’ll sink or swim with him, since we can’t put him in the minors without subjecting him to a waiver claim. Anyone want to lose him for nothing? Okay, then. Maybe he needs a specific d-man coach? I don’t know. This isn’t a Braydon Coburn situation, where it’s 4-years later, and the guy can’t crack the lineup or get his coach to play him more than six (6) minutes a game. Bogosian is getting plenty of minutes. The way to reign him in … is to limit his ice time until he starts to play more intelligently. When he does, reward him with more playing time.

Look, I don’t like how Bogosian’s development is going. But it is what it is. The guy still has the potential to become quite a “serviceable” defenseman. Will he be a Tier I guy?? I don’t know. Maybe. If some coach would just step forward to aid this asset and help develop him into something better. He’s 20. There’s still time.

Do you know what I wanted to do, at 18 years of age? That’s right. Get drunk, run with all the women that’d have me, and hire Van Halen to play my birthday party. At age 20 … what changes is … maybe you don’t think it matters so much if Van Halen plays your birthday party. That’s hold old Bogosian is. He can’t legally drink!!! Yet, he’s expected to be the blueline ’savior’ of the Atlanta Thrashers, a franchise that couldn’t find the word “defense” in the dictionary, with binoculars. We just have to accept that players develop at different rates. When Chara started out, they called him a ‘hulking Lurch, with two LEFT feet.’ They said he’d never survive at the NHL-level. Somebody helped him skate better. Somebody taught him how to play better. Invested at 3rd overall, I’d say that Bogosian merits a ’special coach’ dedicated to his development. To quote Red Light, “Nobody develops talent like the Atlanta Thrashers.” Is Dan Marr still head of scouting, 12 years later? Fraser, Hartley, Waddell (twice), John Anderson, and now Craig Ramsay … haven’t seemed to fair any better with his draft selections.

Brendan

April 5th, 2011
12:51 am

Glovesave29, an amazing set of coincidences. I wouldn’t bet the farm against the Vancouver Canucks. They’ve been in the league, since 1967-68, without a Cup in their history. So, they are overdue. This has been their best regular season ever. The momentum of the Olympics in their city has perhaps carried over??

R.Stroz, see my post above. I refrained from specifically mentioning Bobby Orr since, well … as Don Cherry once said, “There are stars. Superstars. And then, there’s Bobby Orr. The guy has to have his own category.” But yes, Bobby Orr could really help him develop! I would imagine, however, that Orr has quite a roster of players that he manages. Can he really dedicate the necessary time to devote to Bogosian? If yes, SIGN ‘IM UP!!!

Red Light, AMAZING comeback by the Broadway Blueshirts in the 3rd period … versus Boston. The Bruins led 2-0, and 3-1, and the Rangers still closed out Boston, in Regulation Time, think “ROW.” Carolina fans have to be throwing fits at this point!! The NYR was about 20 minutes from a goose egg, thrusting the ‘Canes right back into a position to take the 8th spot from New York.

Cliff Fletcher

April 5th, 2011
7:29 am

bogosian was not ready to play in the nhl. is that his fault?-no! it’s the organization’s fault for pushing him the the big club too fast, before he was ready. so you can toss bogo under the wheels and make his inhale diesel exhaust all you want, but it is not the kid’s fault.

99% of defenseman do not mature in this league at 20, just look at all the phenoms from bogo’s draft year that have struggled or are currently struggling. in each case, their club’s are asking too much of them. something tells me that all the bloggers that are critical of bogosian have never played the position or hockey itself. if you had, you would understand bogosian’s situation.

so trade him or develop him-but don’t keep trotting him out there under the current circimstances, because you are eventually going to ruin him.

Mr. Heat Miser

April 5th, 2011
7:56 am

OK lemme try this. Like a good neighbor, State Farm is there……with new ownership……new marketing staff…..refurbished arena……sane concession prices……ad nauseum

Dwayne

April 5th, 2011
8:23 am

Bobby Orr is telling Zach to play like $h!t to get the hell out from under the coach whisperer.

Red Light

April 5th, 2011
8:26 am

Chris Pronger’s first three seasons…
81 games, 5 goals, 25 assists, -3, 113 PIM
43 games, 5 goals, 9 assists, -12, 54 PIM
78 games , 7 goals, 18 assists, -18, 110 PIM

Fourth season
79 games, 11 goals, 24 assists, +15, 143 PIM

Hmmmm? See a pattern?

Red Light

April 5th, 2011
8:36 am

Very nice win last night Brendan. Love the Sauer kid. He’s all what is good about this game, as he waited for his opportunity after battling injuries and now is making the most of it. Game winning goal, an assist and five blocked shots. Big game by Prospal too, and Marc Staal was +4 last night.

Carolina still has a shot, and don’t be surprised if Buffalo lays a big egg against Tampa Bay tonight.

jimbo

April 5th, 2011
8:43 am

Good time to experiment with D-buff up front. We definitely need a top line center even an aging, one step slower guy will do. Lots of speed in some of the younger guys but no real savvy in setting things up. Also need grit. For all the boxing instructions that Thorburn and Bolts took, they seem to think of themselves as offensive threats and not bruisers. We need grit. What a waste of size in Stewart. And last of all send Mr. Robinson (aka Clueless Craig) back to his neighborhood to do “wonderful” things.

World Be Free

April 5th, 2011
9:05 am

You only trade Bogosian if somebody is offering one heck of a return. The return would be a scorer and a defenseman, both under the age of 25 no draft picks please. The previous reference to Luke Schenn is an accurate one, he is playing within his means, rarely out of position. Schenn doesn’t worry about his offense, he plays defense and rather soundly at that. Stop Bogosian from rushing the puck, get the kid to play defense first then worry about offense.

What where you guys doing at 20 years of age? Frankly, I can’t remember which tells what my frame of mind was at that age. You can imagine what it is for Bogosian.

JT

April 5th, 2011
9:08 am

You know, if ol Antropov is so frustrated, why didn’t he bother to pick up Mark Recchi in front of the net? He sure has a lot to say, but doesn’t seem to do much about it on the ice.

World Be Free

April 5th, 2011
9:17 am

Red Light, I am STILL waiting for Buffalo to blow this playoff spot. Don’t know where they would be without Enroth right now, he stole the Carolina game. Team has no leadership on the ice; Tyler Myers finally played like a Calder Trophy winner Sunday. He has struggled alot this year-sound familiar? A young defenseman struggling? Myers is kid like Bogosian.

Smoothie-looks like Shaone Morrison has played his way out of a job in Buffalo. Marc-Andre Gragnani has taken Morrison’s spot in the Sabres’ lineup.

ThrasherTim

April 5th, 2011
9:30 am

KLS1 – Thursday night’s game against the Rangers is on Versus if you have that in your cable/satellite package.

LAC

April 5th, 2011
9:32 am

I agree WBF, don’t give him away, and I kinda see your point Brenden, But quite frankly, this guy has cost Atlanta this season, A LOT. Put blame where you wish, lack of time in the minors, which goes back to having our OWN farm team, young etc… He has not progressed like a third pick should or could have.. The big problem I have is he has cost us POINTS in the season, Points we could have used badly as the season unfolded. I am sorry, but I do not want to see zach play for Atlanta again, he is not a good young player and we have Postma waiting in the wings and he would take zach’s place with NO problem. I only hope they SIT him the rest of this season…

Funny thing, Nashville does not have ONE 20 goal scorer, it’s all about DEFENSE, and we have NONE and never have. Like I stated at the start of the season… We needed to cut off about 60-70
goals to make they playoffs, and yet again we are going to be at the BOTTOM of the NHL, where we are quite accustom in GA, and those in charge just don’t GET IT !

glovesave29

April 5th, 2011
9:38 am

RL – if you remember, the Whalers ran Pronger out of town, and STL fans were furious that they lost Shanahan to get him. Time kinda heals that wound, eh?

Stroz…not sure if Bobby can coach a team. You would think his agency agreement would preclude that. He’s got other players all over the league – Spezza, Kaberle, all of the Staals, everyones favorite Anthony Stewart…

LAC – preaching to the choir, my friend. Been asking to leave Chicago for YEARS.

The NHL needs to address the silly rule whereby players with junior eligibility left MUST be returned to their team if they don’t stick in the NHL. They are now paid pros and under contract. If the team feels like they’d be better served in the ECHL, CHL or AHL (which of course they’d be) instead of the juniors, they should be allowed to do so.

Brendan – I am not sold on the Canucks, they are too soft and just lost their best face off man. I just thought the stats were an interesting coincidence. But they haven’t been in since 1967. They were not included in the first expansion and their mayor and the Canadian PM raised hell with NHL Pres. Clarence Campbell claiming the Leafs tried to squander their efforts to get the team and they got in on the second expansion with Buffalo in 1970

R. Stroz

April 5th, 2011
9:56 am

glovesave29 – I get your point, however, I don’t want Orr to coach the team, just mentor Bogosian for a few months over the summer.

Ice Puckies

April 5th, 2011
10:05 am

Bogo, Kane, Bumis, All brought straight into the NHL — not one game of AHL experience between them, right?
HAS ANYONE EVER THOUGHT THAT MAYBE IF THESE YOUNG “SUPERSTARS” WERE GIVEN AT LEAST ONE YEAR IN THE MINORS IT MIGHT HELP THEM TO DEVELOPE INTO REAL NHL’ers verses middle of the road could have beens?
Answer that Wads and Duds….

World Be Free

April 5th, 2011
10:17 am

LAC-can’t argue with the way Bogosian has played this season or what he has cost us. Now we have to look forward, what do we do here? Do we tarde him or try and develop him? The latter has never been tried, the former must net a sizeable return to recoup the investment of such a high pick. The kid is obviously not getting it with the coaching and on-ice tutoring he is receiving.

Ice Puckies-if the players have junior eligibility left, you cannot send them to the AHL or any professional minor league. But leaving them in juniors would have been fine with me, you are on the right track. Do what Florida is doing.