Is Dave Poulin The New Flames GM?

Christian Roatis
December 13 2013 05:56PM

 

 

Well that was quick. Or was it?

Shawn Simpson of TSN 1200 reported earlier today that Joe Nieuwendyk is no longer a candidate for the General Manager position in Calgary and that Dave Poulin - current Vice President of Hockey Operations in Toronto - has landed the gig.

Well, there you go. It all seems a little too fast to me, though. It hasn't even been 48 hours since Brian Burke stood at the podium and stressed the importance of getting the right guy for this job. Did he really he have the time to conduct proper interviews with the candidates on his list? I guess we'll find out soon, but I'd take this report with a grain of salt.

But, if Dave Poulin really is the guy, are you happy with the choice?

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Christian Roatis is a European by birth, Calgarian by heart. Other than writing at FlamesNation, he writes about and scouts NHL Draft Prospects at Future Considerations. Follow him on Twitter @CRoatis!
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#1 MonsterPod
December 13 2013, 06:24PM
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Am I happy with the choice? I want whoever is going to listen to Burke and effectively be his assistant GM. BB gets a ton of trash talk, but in my opinion, he has improved teams everywhere he's gone. Has he made mistakes? Of course. How can one not? But overall, the teams are drastically improved.

He made the Canucks contenders. Remember the West Coast Express and drafting the Sedins? People like to discredit his work in Anaheim, but bringing in both Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger was a huge achievement. Toronto was a mess with lots of random Euros not getting it done. Antropov, Ponikarovsky, etc. TO is on the right track now because of his work.

I was stoked when they brought him to Calgary and I was overjoyed yesterday when he fired Feaster. Jay was a nice guy and my heart goes out to him as a person, but as a fan, I am ecstatic that he is out of the picture. I have been face-palming myself for years at how he's been making the Flames a team of wimps and midgets. Someone needed to swoop in and save this sinking ship and no one is better, in my opinion, than BB.

If I could, I would put Flames jerseys on all the Blues. That's what I want in Cowtown and it's also what Burkie apparently wants. Let's make it happen. I am jacked. Now bring on the diatribes and mockery.

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#2 Walter White
December 13 2013, 07:23PM
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Are those 2 guys always that greasy, or was it an exceptionally hot and humid day in Toronto?

WW

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#3 Hank williams
December 14 2013, 07:52AM
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Jim Peplinski. Knows hockey, proven businessman, has serious Flames legacy. Would he want it is the question

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#4 redricardo
December 13 2013, 06:30PM
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Isn't it general practice to hire from other SUCCESSFUL franchises, not mediocre ones that are riding all-world goaltending to a .500 record?

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#5 BurningSensation
December 13 2013, 07:36PM
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I think at this point it should be clear that it doesn't matter who Burke chooses as his GM, Brian Burke will still be the GM.

That isn't a bad thing necessarily, but so long as Burke sits at the top of the foodchain, he'll be the guy planning the meals.

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#6 Jeff In Lethbridge
December 13 2013, 07:05PM
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this would be too pathetic if it were true. but not a surprise.

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#7 EugeneV
December 13 2013, 10:03PM
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Nobody has yet mentioned our greatest ever player as a possible candidate.

Why not?

I vote for Al MacInnis for the job.

7 years learning in St Louis under Pleau, Davidson and Armstrong.

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#8 Burnward
December 14 2013, 12:55AM
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Why the hell would you not hire someone you are familiar with and shares your philosophy on the game?

Cronyism, bah. You guys are craze.

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#9 Johnny Be Gaudreau
December 13 2013, 06:42PM
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No no no no no no no no... if I just keep repeating 'no' this won't happen right? I was actually pulling for Dinning from Boston at least he's got a track record at drafting and development. Please. Let this be a false report.

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#10 Southern_Point
December 13 2013, 07:01PM
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"Rather than even focus on the actual numbers of Tyler Bozak, I’d look at the numbers of Phil Kessel while he’s playing with Tyler Bozak." That's a Dave Poulin quote right there.

http://mapleleafshotstove.com/2013/07/29/an-interview-with-leafs-vp-of-hockey-operations-dave-poulin/

So he basically is under the assumption Tyler Bozak has something to do with Phil Kessel's production. Even though it's pretty easy to demonstrate that he does not. It doesn't even involve advanced stats you just have to look at who is assisting who.

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#11 JaromeTakesSlapShots
December 13 2013, 07:08PM
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Burke will only choose someone that resembles a little bit of himself in. Burke is a bulldog and just wants a "yes man" that he can bark down orders to. The little bulldog (Poulin) will do whatever father bulldog tells him to do.

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#12 Chad
December 13 2013, 08:40PM
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@MonsterPod

What I'm worried about is Burke's idea that there is one model the big black and blue way to win in the NHL. It doesn't seem to be true and also may mistake why the teams won. Teams have won with played black and blue hockey but they also tending to have the best goal tending as well. Did they win because they were big and hit or was it because of Tim Thomas and Jonathan Quick both posting .940+ save percentages?

Since the lock out and the rule changes the champions: Black Hawks, Kings, Bruins, Black Hawks, Penguins, Wings, Ducks, and Hurricanes.

Black Hawks, Penguins, Wings, and Hurricanes won more on skill/puck possession/goal scoring then toughness or size.

Kings, Bruins and Ducks won with toughness. However, the Kings and the Bruins also had the best goal tending when they won.

So if Burke is try to build a winner on the Ducks model it looks like a real outlier on why and how to win in the NHL since the lock out ended.

Burke I think is an upgrade on the trade front over Fester and the Flames probably are too small but his approach and age may mean that Burke is past his prime. Burke seems better suited to the pre-lock out game and I am doubtful that he will bring in the forward thinking/analytic type that is able to get and keep a team competitive.

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#13 Ryan Pike
December 13 2013, 09:10PM
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Hmm... Former NHLer. Former Notre Dame coach. Scouted with the Ducks. Executive with the Leafs for awhile. Is basically Toronto's Craig Conroy right now, albeit older with a more extensive resume.

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#14 MontanaMan
December 14 2013, 07:28AM
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Never fire a man until you've identified his replacement. No doubt this has happened here as well. Burke knows who he wants and he already has a commitment. Will it happen immediately? Of course not. Burke needs to demonstrate that his search was "exhaustive" and "thorough" but make no mistake about it, he has his man. He will wait for the Christmas season but expect an announcement before January 14. No knowledge who it will be, be it will be someone with a "relationship" with Burke. Brutal.

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#15 coachedpotatoe
December 14 2013, 08:26AM
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Some very interesting comments here. If this indeed the hire it makes sense; someone Burke knows, someone who will do as they are told, someone for Burke to blame i things go wrong, someone who will let Burke take the credit if things go well.This is a win win for Burke, but is it the right move for the Flames.

King and Edwards must be happy, they got their man "Burke" and avoided (King) any responsibility for the problems created by their previous choices. Now they still will have to pay Feaster & Wises plus two of Burkes pals when it is done. It must be nice to have money to burn. (I predict they will fire that whole lot within 3 years because the rebuild that Burke proposes will not work)

Interesting that some former Flames names are being discussed and these two Mcinnis and Newy might be good. Going back to the past seems to be working in Colorado but not so much in Edmonton.

This years rebuild should not be altered. We need to trade the UFA's for assets, we need to allow the AHLers to develop, we need to sign our college prospects and draft well. Then and only then should Burke pursue his plan. Which I am sure will include signing Free Agents to fill the gaps he has identified, trading those assets that he does not fell fit his style(Backs, Sven, Granlund to name a few) and firing Hartley and staff and hiring his pal Wilson to coach.

We will get to see the Leaf remix for the next 3 years, yahoo I am so excited. If I was a season ticket holder I would be sending my tickets back directly to Mr Edwards, if I was a sponsor I would be advertising somewhere else.

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#16 coachedpotatoe
December 14 2013, 09:03AM
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loudogYYC wrote:

Who the hell is Shawn Simpson anyway?

The next GM has a great opportunity here. Most of the mess has been cleaned up, ownership is willing to spend to the cap and expectations are at an all time low. Hope they get it right this time.

While I agree that the new GM has great potential here b/c of what you said. I disagree b/c of what you failed to say. a new GM has no power here b/c Burke will only hire a yes man not someone with new ideas.

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#17 Colin.S
December 13 2013, 06:20PM
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If this is true I predicted this crap in another posting. I said it's going to be some buddy from a previous administration or some old retread of a GM just looking for a job.

With Burke being the REAL GM in Calgary we were never going to get a actual competent/high profile GM because who wants to sign onto a loser team and have no real ability to make any decisions?

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#19 Parallex
December 13 2013, 09:03PM
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I think Simpson is jumping the gun here, that being said... pleasenopleasenopleasenopleasenopleasenopleasenopleaseno.

No toadie nepotism hires please, it was bad enough when Feaster hired Hartley and Sutter hired Sutter.

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#20 Derzie
December 13 2013, 06:19PM
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Yes, lets model ourselves after the Leafs. Brilliant plan. How can it fail?

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#21 ?
December 13 2013, 07:18PM
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Colin.S wrote:

If this is true I predicted this crap in another posting. I said it's going to be some buddy from a previous administration or some old retread of a GM just looking for a job.

With Burke being the REAL GM in Calgary we were never going to get a actual competent/high profile GM because who wants to sign onto a loser team and have no real ability to make any decisions?

Lol I thought it was gonna be Dave Nonis :)

The night is still young...

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#22 Burnward
December 13 2013, 09:30PM
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How is it possible that all of this knowledge on GM's and their potential can be found here?

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#23 FXO
December 13 2013, 10:37PM
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And this is why you should always have a second favorite team. I recommend a team in a different conference as good idea, so when things get real bad and/or stupid you can just follow it for a while instead,....LOOK the NY Rangers have 3 more points than the Flames! (This is really gunna suck for a long time isn't it?)

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#24 KingJafi
December 14 2013, 07:39AM
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RKD wrote:

Well if it is true, that is awfully fast. Seems like Burke wanted his buddy Poulin here a long time ago. Wait a sec.., hiring buddies. Sound familiar? Feaster hired his buddy Hartley as the coach, Darryl Sutter hired his brother Brent Sutter to coach the team. Some things never change.

Feaster also hired Weisbrod cause they were buddies from back when Feaster was in Tampa and Weisbrod was with the Orlando Magic. I guess by working together they realized they weren't such good buddies after all.

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#25 Get The Puck Outta Here
December 14 2013, 08:31AM
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So the last time I checked BB had been involved in winning the same number of Cups as Jay Feaster. Humm. Parade? PARADE??? Are you kidding me?? (things that make me laugh!)

Looks like they are even in the Parade Marshall category.

New GM? Again, whoever "master" picks better make sure he can say "Yes" to whatever BB wants or he will be applying for a "Mac Job" too.

Make no mistake about it now. BB is the little dictator over this organization.

GET THE PARADE ROUTE READY!! LOL

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#26 HongKongHockeyFan
December 14 2013, 10:24AM
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Well time to give my two time cents on Brian Burke. And my short take is that his track record has shown him to be simply just a good GM rather than a great one. He has never build a Stanley Cup champion from scratch. Without spending a lot of time researching his history of managing a team, it appears he definitely got lucky with the Ducks winning the cup.

Burke was lucky to step into the Ducks' GM role after Bryan Murray decided to head back to Ottawa after drafting Ryan Getzlaf and Corry Perry in the 2003 draft. Murray also signed Chris Kunitz as a free agent in 2003. I also think Murray signed Dustin Penner before he left the Ducks.

Burke was also lucky that Scott Niedermayer wanted to join his brother Rob in Anaheim in 2005 after he became a free agent. Similarly, Burke got lucky when Chris Pronger ran into marital problems and wanted a one way ticket out of Edmonton. Admittedly, Burke made a great move dumping Federov's contract and getting Francois Beuchemin in return from the Blue Jackets.

So it looks pretty clear to me that "Bryan Murray set the table and Brian Burke ate the food".

Admittedly, Burke left the Canucks in pretty good shape before he was shown the door after drafting the Sedins and Kesler but in the end they never did win the cup thanks Luongo freezing up the finals.

So that's my two cents, Burke has shown that he is a good GM but not a great one by any means. God just look at the Leafs, they are barely a marginal playoff team yet. Yeah Burke made good trades getting JVR for Luke Shenn (the latter he traded up to draft) and getting Joffrey Lupul (who he traded away in Anaheim) and Jake Gardiner for Francois Beuchemin. Otherwise, I still think he overpaid for Kessel (damn Seguin looks great) and picking up duds like Komisarek, Liles Connolly shows that ability to identify talent has fallen even when he had the help of Rick Dudley on hand.

If history is anything to go by, look for Brian Burke to get a goalie in the fold quickly, which should help Calgary, unfortunately, climb from around from the 27-29th spot to around 21-24th spot in standings this year. I recall Burke picking up Martin Gerber to make a late push in 2008-09 season.

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#27 -30-
December 14 2013, 10:39AM
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As an Oiler fan I can only be jealous. I'd gladly trade you Kevin (six cups) Lowe for Brian Burke upstairs.

BB will no doubt be the REAL gm so it doesn't really matter who he hires to be the "official" gm.

You guys are automatically ahead of Edmonton in the rebuild.

-30-

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#28 Steven Primo
December 14 2013, 10:49AM
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Enough talk about the old boys club and ex NHL'ers.......that's the reason we are in this mess. We need someone with a solid understanding of the players agreement and someone who has worked well within this system. We need someone that has worked for a winning organization. I think Laurence Gilman of the Vancouver Canucks would make an excellent GM in Calgary. He is smart, well respected and has worked with some of the finest mentors in the NHL. That's what we need in Calgary! Enough of the NHL retreads!

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#29 Stockley
December 14 2013, 11:04AM
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MonsterPod wrote:

Am I happy with the choice? I want whoever is going to listen to Burke and effectively be his assistant GM. BB gets a ton of trash talk, but in my opinion, he has improved teams everywhere he's gone. Has he made mistakes? Of course. How can one not? But overall, the teams are drastically improved.

He made the Canucks contenders. Remember the West Coast Express and drafting the Sedins? People like to discredit his work in Anaheim, but bringing in both Scott Niedermayer and Chris Pronger was a huge achievement. Toronto was a mess with lots of random Euros not getting it done. Antropov, Ponikarovsky, etc. TO is on the right track now because of his work.

I was stoked when they brought him to Calgary and I was overjoyed yesterday when he fired Feaster. Jay was a nice guy and my heart goes out to him as a person, but as a fan, I am ecstatic that he is out of the picture. I have been face-palming myself for years at how he's been making the Flames a team of wimps and midgets. Someone needed to swoop in and save this sinking ship and no one is better, in my opinion, than BB.

If I could, I would put Flames jerseys on all the Blues. That's what I want in Cowtown and it's also what Burkie apparently wants. Let's make it happen. I am jacked. Now bring on the diatribes and mockery.

Burkie didn't bring in Niedermayer, Bryan Murray had already signed him away from Jersey when Burke took over as GM.

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#30 redricardo
December 14 2013, 06:33PM
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Apparently we have permission to talk to Jim Benning, assistant GM with the Bruins.

Does anyone remember seeing anything on this guy on that "Behind the B" series they're doing? Was he one of the guys saying inane things like "Seguin doesn't play Bruins hockey"?

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#31 prendrefeu
December 14 2013, 10:40PM
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If Fenton gets chosen, this will be referenced more often than not:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3GRSbr0EYYU

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#32 Justin Azevedo
December 13 2013, 06:23PM
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Derzie wrote:

Yes, lets model ourselves after the Leafs. Brilliant plan. How can it fail?

qft

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#33 beloch
December 13 2013, 07:09PM
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If true, this would be a pretty classic case of cronyism. Not good. The primary goal you should have when hiring is to find somebody *smarter* than you are, not a sycophant. The owners are keen enough businessmen that they might possibly understand this and, if so, they should reject Poulin and tell Burke to find his successor. The owners should insist on somebody who will light a fire under Burke's ass rather than merely assist him with drudge-work so that he can semi-retire.

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#34 TRAV
December 13 2013, 07:29PM
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Hopefully the search is a bit more exhaustive than this. Having said that if we land back at Poile that might be okay. I truthfully do not know a single thing about the man, his history, his philosophies etc.

I would love it if FN did a little synopsis of the candidates like they do with the draft.

I am curious if it is the guy people are opposed to or the process. The process I can understand. The guy, well maybe but I haven't seen much evidence yet of why this is a terrible pick. Not saying it isn't but I'd be casting judgment on someone I know literally nothing about.

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#36 KingJafi
December 13 2013, 09:34PM
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This is prob fiction. Burke would just look silly after what he preached yesterday. Poulin s def a candidate but hired...not yet at least.

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#37 KingJafi
December 13 2013, 10:15PM
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beloch wrote:

If true, this would be a pretty classic case of cronyism. Not good. The primary goal you should have when hiring is to find somebody *smarter* than you are, not a sycophant. The owners are keen enough businessmen that they might possibly understand this and, if so, they should reject Poulin and tell Burke to find his successor. The owners should insist on somebody who will light a fire under Burke's ass rather than merely assist him with drudge-work so that he can semi-retire.

Cronyism in the Flames organization? No way...never.

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#38 Dr. Philosophy
December 13 2013, 10:45PM
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Poulin to...PITTSBURGH!!

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#39 KingJafi
December 13 2013, 10:57PM
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FXO wrote:

And this is why you should always have a second favorite team. I recommend a team in a different conference as good idea, so when things get real bad and/or stupid you can just follow it for a while instead,....LOOK the NY Rangers have 3 more points than the Flames! (This is really gunna suck for a long time isn't it?)

I tried that with the Habs in my absence and they were quite good but I was way too pissed about what was going on in YYC to really get excited for another team. Still like the Habs but I'm glad to be somewhat enthusiastic about the Flames again.

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#40 RKD
December 13 2013, 10:59PM
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Well if it is true, that is awfully fast. Seems like Burke wanted his buddy Poulin here a long time ago. Wait a sec.., hiring buddies. Sound familiar? Feaster hired his buddy Hartley as the coach, Darryl Sutter hired his brother Brent Sutter to coach the team. Some things never change.

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#41 loudogYYC
December 14 2013, 01:31AM
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Who the hell is Shawn Simpson anyway?

The next GM has a great opportunity here. Most of the mess has been cleaned up, ownership is willing to spend to the cap and expectations are at an all time low. Hope they get it right this time.

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#42 suba steve
December 14 2013, 07:13AM
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Christian Roatis wrote:

We'll see how it all shakes down but I think Simpson jumped the gun a little bit by reporting this. If it were up to me, I'd take either Paul Fenton or Jim Benning. Both solid drafting guys that have played the game at the highest level. Two key ingredients to have in the next GM here in my opinion. Burke may want to run the show, but he still needs to someone to tell him who to draft and that's either Benning or Fenton.

I can't say that it would be right or wrong to require the future GM to be a "solid drafting guy".

I do remember Craig Button and his "strength" in evaluating young talent when he joined the Flames. I don't remember him drafting a lot of high end talent while he was in the position. I do remember Marc Savard and Martin St. Louis slipping through Craig's fingers though.

Ultimately, it should be the scouting department that evaluates talent and reports to the GM, as the GM should be busy with other issues. It may be an asset for an executive to have that scouting background, but it should not be the be-all end-all.

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#43 loudogYYC
December 14 2013, 12:27PM
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coachedpotatoe wrote:

While I agree that the new GM has great potential here b/c of what you said. I disagree b/c of what you failed to say. a new GM has no power here b/c Burke will only hire a yes man not someone with new ideas.

You really seem pissed off about this man. Did Burke poo on your doorstep or something?

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#44 McRib
December 14 2013, 01:21PM
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In 10 seasons as the head coach of Notre Dame, Dave Poulin had two seasons with an above 0.500 winning percentage.... Average winning percentage over that time was 0.422. For such a storied school that likely has very few problems recruiting that track record isn't very impressive at all. Fortunately this seems premature lets hope we choose a Benning or Fenton. Burkie did mention that this is a perfect opportunity for a first time guy and that we were in competition with Buffalo... Considering Poulin is not getting any consideration for that Buffalo job from what I have heard, maybe we are looking more closely at Benning and Fenton than what a biased Ontario media scribe thinks....

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#45 loudogYYC
December 14 2013, 01:46PM
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BTW, this Simpson guy is the Ottawa equivalent to Ryan Leslie here on the Fan960. He interviewed David Poile from the Predators on Nov. 21 where Poile said this:

'I've reached out to Buffalo to suggest it would be in their best interest to interview Paul and they're going to get back in due course. Paul has put in all of his time. ... I can't think of a guy who's never had a GM job that's more qualified than Paul. ... It could be a terrific situation for Buffalo with all their draft picks.'

After everything Burke said in his press conference you'd think this could be brought up again, but instead he talks about some guy getting no consideration from anyone for the Calgary GM position like it's a fact.

Sounds to me like Simpson is fishing for attention, clicks and follows, etc. No need to get bent out of shape.

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#46 coachedpotatoe
December 14 2013, 04:24PM
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loudogYYC wrote:

You really seem pissed off about this man. Did Burke poo on your doorstep or something?

Nope;But I think he is an overrated blowhard. I doubt he will proceed with the rebuild as I had hoped. His idea of what makes a good team and mine differ in many ways. He reminds me of Sutter in his attitude towards hockey except with a greater than everyone attitude.

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#47 loudogYYC
December 14 2013, 05:34PM
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@coachedpotatoe

I hear what you're saying, you just seem 100% negative about it.

Remember, this is the guy that convinced Darryl Sutter not to shop Phaneuf to anyone else in a year where the Flames didn't have a 1st rd pick and then went on to fleece him with one of the worst trades in franchise history. 3 of the 4 players the Flames received aren't even playing in the NHL 3 years later.

Sure, he's arrogant, controversial and rubs people the wrong way, but he's made great moves in this league and he'll make his mark on this team too. It's way too early to tell if it'll be good or bad though.

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#48 coachedpotatoe
December 14 2013, 07:22PM
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loudogYYC wrote:

I hear what you're saying, you just seem 100% negative about it.

Remember, this is the guy that convinced Darryl Sutter not to shop Phaneuf to anyone else in a year where the Flames didn't have a 1st rd pick and then went on to fleece him with one of the worst trades in franchise history. 3 of the 4 players the Flames received aren't even playing in the NHL 3 years later.

Sure, he's arrogant, controversial and rubs people the wrong way, but he's made great moves in this league and he'll make his mark on this team too. It's way too early to tell if it'll be good or bad though.

He's also made a bunch of bad signings himself and has been run out of 3 hockey cities himself for failing to deliver. He has been given lots of credit for things done by others. Everyone can have there opinion on him, I was quite unhappy when he was brought in as he is everything I disdain about hockey and professional sports in general. I hoped he would be able to work with Feaster/wises and others but it has become evident that he thinks he knows it all. I am very concerned that we will see to many yes men in this organization and that is what we saw with the Sutter clan and this led to a collapse of this organization. While Feaster did a lot of things wrong he at least cleaned up much of the mess and had started to rebuild the organization with a wide range of players; some of whom will be NHLers of every type and style and others will be duds.

For a team to be successful you need depth, talent, grit and lots of luck. Burke rubs me the wrong way for many reasons. I would love to see this team succeed but I do not believe he and his friends are the answer and he will derail and set the rebuild back again rather quickly. I would love to be wrong as I want this team to be a contender again soon.

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#49 the-wolf
December 14 2013, 09:30PM
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Ron Hextall is my choice, but I like Fenton too

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#50 Jeff In Lethbridge
December 15 2013, 11:20AM
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-30- wrote:

As an Oiler fan I can only be jealous. I'd gladly trade you Kevin (six cups) Lowe for Brian Burke upstairs.

BB will no doubt be the REAL gm so it doesn't really matter who he hires to be the "official" gm.

You guys are automatically ahead of Edmonton in the rebuild.

-30-

is that you walter white?

who else signs blog posts...

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