Pat Lafontaine’s Hiring: Old/New/Selective/Rules For Inexperienced Candidates/Owners/Media? Bridgeport Changes
Other than being very disappointed at one of Bill Torrey’s proteges in Darcy Regier’s, sixteen year tenure ending with Buffalo, I’m thrilled for Pat Lafontaine/Ted Nolan, and wish them the best of luck.
However what happened reaffirmed a lot of things, the biggest being NHL owners really have no clue on hiring executives which explains why most of them hate making a change in the first place.
Also that hockey media have the same selective standards as owners depending on the individual hired regardless of experience.
Many owners likely rely on the NHL for advice in these matters which is why Lafontaine’s Oct 2013 unspecified job with the NHL lasted almost to the day (42) as his tenure with the Islanders in 2006 before Sabres owner, Terry Pegula, made a decision.
It’s not unreasonable to suggest with Lafontaine’s move back to Buffalo, the league advised Pegula or he got to know Lafontaine since he purchased the club.
Of course the question there is did Lafontaine go unconventional hiring Ted Nolan as a coach (interim) or did Pegula go against the school of thinking that kept teams from hiring Nolan aside from Charles Wang, and hire Nolan with Lafontaine?
Likely a question the media will not touch.
Of course we would see a completely opposite reaction if Charles Wang hired Denis Potvin (experienced broadcaster) to be the Islanders President, Mike Bossy (experienced corporate relations) to replace Garth Snow, and Bryan Trottier (experienced head/cup winning assistant coach) to replace Jack Capuano.
There is no Central Scouting for owners when it comes to hiring team a team executive or the person entrusted with running the hockey operation. Most are corporate billionaires, some throw money at the biggest name/resume, others take a chance from experience built over years, some internal, while others hire the people/players they become friends with.
It was obvious Charles Wang did a terrible job struggling to find a general manager from January to June in 2006, however he corrected his mistake, and his team qualified for the playoffs. His current general manger signed John Tavares for less than James Wisniewski/Ehrhoff/Richards (countless others) which is why win or lose in 2013-14 he should retain his job to go with the comments of the players themselves who all made clear they like being part of this organization, especially the ones who would supposedly never report here, but enthusiastically resigned.
This is why Garth Snow earns his paycheck.
When an exeutive is a problem (rare) for an organization, it usually results in many of them not being hired elsewhere. Obviously Neil Smith comes to mind.
And like general managers in trades some owners do not give much help/advice to other owners, some even want compensation.
As for team President Pat Lafontaine, I would love to be in the room when his 1991 version sits down, and is told by a player agent, I will not resign with the Sabres under the current ownership regardless of any contract offer.
“I expect they’ll offer us something, but I don’t expect it will resolve anything,” said Meehan. “What Pat wants from them is to be traded; nothing’s changed.”
This was with an ownership which financed four Stanley Cup Championships, with a general manager, named Torrey, a coach named Arbour.
Of course a decade later Mr Torrey joked about it on ice when Charles Wang honored him, before honoring Lafontaine 11/8/2003 at the Coliseum with a pregame ceremony days after his NHL Hall of Fame induction.
Does Pat Lafontaine’s experience merit being an NHL team President?
I do find it fascinating the same media who roasted Snow’s appointment to Islanders general manger now simply dismiss it as “neither have others” when the question of Lafontaine’s experience comes up.
We have hybrid icing, and now hybrid media.
The Bridgeport Sound Tigers announced Wednesday 11/13, that they have signed forwards Chris Langkow and Sean Wiles to professional tryout contracts (PTOs). The team has also loaned forward Greg Miller to the Stockton Thunder (ECHL). Finally, the New York Islanders have reassigned forward Kirill Kabanov to Bridgeport while reassigning forward Jason Clark to Stockton.
They’re framing it as a hockey decision; get him more minutes, work on his game in both ends, and so forth, sing along, and playing on the third line, he probably could use some more time. His “personal-reasons” absence this morning suggested more, and a source said Kabanov was late for a meeting and it wasn’t the first time.
No issue if conduct related. Having written that Kabanov (who scored) was the third line right wing Sunday, with no prospect on the top two lines at right wing.
Bridgeport had Joey Diamond as the first line right wing, Chris Bruton the second right winger.
This is another reason you don’t trade a franchise pick RW Niederreiter for Clutterbuck.
With Ullstrom in KHL, Joensuu in Edmonton, Niederreiter in Minnesota, and Nelson in New York the top drafted prospect depth has gone down significantly with Strome, Lee, Persson, Sundstrom, Quine.
Jason Clark was in the ECHL last season, he was on the same line as Kabanov Sunday.
That’s Nino Niederreiter speaking likely on 1/22/13.
The Sound Tigers website released this update on 1/22/13.
Note-The team video was released between 10am-11am on the teams twitter feed or before any other updates on Tuesday.
1/22/13: Niederreiter’s personal twitter feed also RT this update around 10am here.
Niederreiter later added this to his Facebook page on 1/22/13
Kirill Kabanov is getting very close to returning, it’s possible he goes to Norfolk next weekend.
Ed Mangano announced his latest plan for the Nassau Coliseum site on 10/14, it could mean a new Coliseum on the Northern part of the Hub constructed, or a renovation of the current facility.
The study, which needs state funding/private investment, was from something called Accelerate-Nassau-Now which had images in rough sketches.
Page eight, nine, ten, fourteen are the sections on the Coliseum. Twenty, twenty one relied on some Lighthouse background information.
Means nothing unless Charles Wang agrees to a lease extension.
New York Notables:
It’s obvious DiPietro’s concussion will leave him on the sidelines for an undetermined time, as long as, it’s not of the Crosby/Vaske variety, with lingering ramifications, it’s not of consequence.
The key for DiPietro are his knee issues, and game rust.
Jack Capuano sounded like Scott Gordon at 4-1-2 last October in his post-game, he knows something’s not right with his roster even after a 5-1 win. Staios made a great play on Stamkos, the lack of speed on this defense cannot be hidden for many nights.
I did not have clear picture against Tampa, it seemed Comeau was back on right wing, loved what I saw from Hamonic, Bailey, and Martin.
The prospect blog has the updated status for Kabanov.
The long version of what’s happened?
Montreal Junior draft his rights in QMJHL dispersal draft.
Montreal Junior change their name to Blainville-Boisbriand Armada.
Islanders send Kabanov to Blainville-Boisbriand Armada after camp.
Blainville-Boisbriand Armada have no apparent roster spot for Kabanov.
Kabanov signs an eight game tryout contract with Farjestd BK SEL on 10/13.
Blainville-Boisbriand Armada trade his QMJHL rights to Shawinigan Cataractes on 10/14.
The Kirill Kabanov saga leaves him with either an eight game tryout contract with Farjestd in the SEL, or he reports to Shawinigan. Only questions are does the tryout contract obligate him to play in the SEL before going to Shawinigan?
THNonline.com: Report Islander prospect Blake Kessel was named an alternate captain in 2011-12 for the University of New Hampshire as he enters his junior season.
Some will recall Kessel was considering an offer recently to turn professional and sign with the Islanders. He can still turn professional and sign but this likely means he has decided to remain in school or this would not be announced.
Oshawa was eliminated from playoff contention. Calvin deHaan is signed, Tony Dehart has to be signed by next summer, however he is older and has seen a brief AHL stint before he was drafted.
Thrilled Grabner got past some writers vendetta’s and will be a Calder finalist, my honest viewpoint is Jeff Skinner was the best rookie over six months and Grabner’s assist total will hurt vs a player who is a more complete player at a younger age.
Sure Michael Grabner can win, he’s dynamic and shows speed like no player in NHL and produced with a center/right wing that barely scored at even strength, what he did was amazing and few games he did not produce great chances in the second half.
I do believe Grabner will be a close second based on assist and the six month body of work and that’s no knock on Grabner, who if he puts together six months like this next season will be MVP favorite and be over fifty goals.
Of course I’m hoping Grabner wins.
Most entertaining thing about new Comcast-Versus-NBC contract will be watching Flyers owner Ed Snider (Comcast) vs Dick Ebersol (NBC-Cablevision/Msg past ties) in a battle of massive ego’s where Comcast has final say of how much the Flyers will be packaged and sold as America’s NHL team. This was how they already were part of an outdoor game in Boston despite being mediocre overall. Ebersol’s need to take over everything (Google Jay Leno vs Conan O’Brien) to get a good idea of what he is about and NYIFC archives has plenty on Ebersol and his past Msg connections.
Comcast and Ebersol are already fighting over next Olympics which is prime Ebersol territory. Snider is now Ebersol’s boss with Sam Flood marching to beat of both.
Prediction-Ebersol will be gone sooner than later.
Of course Ed Snider/Flyers/Comcast/NBC merger money is paying the league this two billion which few will note.
Aside from that, it’s an incredible financial victory NHL/Bettman and the league owners who no one would pay a few years ago to put on national television and took the risk to dump Espn who treated hockey like Msg hides Islanders/Devils. It will benefit the New York Islanders who will make more revenue off of it.
In term of on-air coverage, Ebersol will not permit Msg local competition to appear on NBC, he would not allow a Devils playoff game on a few years ago. For that to happen Snider’s Flyers have to be involved.
National ratings for NY hockey have been horrible regular season and playoffs, among the worst of all markets because of baseball’s enormous draw year-round. The media does not need hockey beyond Dolan’s newspaper and Knick ad revenue.
Bottom line if you want to hurt another teams ratings, don’t watch their games and give them a double or triple rating.
Why do you think hockey playoffs go to Msg+ and Knicks regular season is on Msg? If Islanders/Devils were still playing it would well hidden Msg2+2.
I’m putting this out there not because of media spin out of Canada, but the way the NHL Board of Governors does things when a league is in the rare horrible circumstance of running a franchise. If the Coyotes do not have a viable owner and financing by the point a new schedule is announced they will be moving by next season.
No chance the NHL is going to run/carry/operate/finance a franchise for a second straight season. No chance the City of Glendale is going to pay the NHL another 25m guarantee to offset losses for another year while league looks for owners again.
I feel terrible for their fans and the spin coming out of Canada to take away their franchise which literally drives away people from going to games and no doubt hurts the club in these playoffs. The Arizona Republic cannot outwork Canadian media or their perception machine.
All the talk/articles/spin aside. A approved sale has to happen now before league sits down to create a schedule or the clock runs out in Glendale.
Of course, they could have bounced a few past Alex Auld Friday.
Matt Moulson could have scored on his breakaway, Tavares was robbed, Weight took the puck at the net like he was ten years younger than his birth certificate, however that’s not the point, it’s about building something for the long-term here.
Enough opposing coaches/players credited the Islanders hard work last year or being a tough team to play.
When you think of how this club was on special teams a year ago, the pp has been a fantastic trend so far.
The starts to games, the even strength scoring are all alarmingly poor trends for more than a few weeks now.
Rick DiPietro starts Saturday.
Scott Gordon was surprisingly upbeat in his post-game press conference after a third straight loss Friday here which Cablevision promised to show but eventually decided not to wait for and after a while cut the telecast off so Msg+2 could show it’s test pattern.
New York again did not start a game well at all, not only on the scoreboard, but in terms of creating chances, it’s a trend that has lasted quite a while and very noticeable.
It’s been a different than a year ago (not counting injuries) however the trends/NHL averages/player careers suggest the pp was not going to carry them for eighty two games. Tavares is not going to be a goal a game player, Doug Weight, James Wisniewski are not going to make a run at a hundred points.
This means others have to step up, and fast. Travis Moen looked like a superstar driving the net for two huge goals in back to back games.
Paging Jon Sim/Trent Hunter/Zeon Konopka.
I maintain Blake Comeau has not been the same player since he was banged up repeatedly in games, or does not have the extra step. Josh Bailey has looked pedestrian (granted only two games) where before he looked like a first line center in how he was playing in all three zones.
With Bridgeport getting a rare weekend off, Rob Schremp either waits in Ct for Wednesday or returns to New York. If Gordon maintains his stance from a year ago that Schremp must play center, Bailey is moving back to wing.
What if Bailey needs to play center to be as dominating as he was?
So much for depth.
Milan Jurcina was injured Friday against Montreal and is out for Saturday. This means Bruno Gervais has his full time spot back on defense, Trevor Gillies likely goes back into the lineup vs Philadelphia.
Time to start reversing the trends, the 6-1 losses/poor games all teams have over eighty two contests are also one of the trends due to happen soon.
The even strength scoring is overdue, so is a sixty minute effort.
Things have to start balancing out, regulation losing streaks cannot happen in this league if you expect to be a playoff team.
Bottom line in an eighty two game season there are x nights you are going to be the better team and win or play just well enough to steal points, or the team is going to have a clunker and lose big.
It’s what teams do in those other games up for grabs that separate the contenders and pretenders.
Six points/three games were just lost that were clearly on the table for this team to win, they got none of them.
Successful teams find a way to win those points, this team must do the same thing.
Don’t count on another year of three clubs under ninety points making the playoffs from this conference, last year was the exception, not the rule.
There are trends to be broken all over Philadelphia on Saturday for Scott Gordon’s players.
-NY Times: Dave Caldwell was allowed to do a feature on Zeon Konopka, but not cover the game.
The Times did not cover the game at Cablevision Garden vs Carolina Friday.
-Oregon Live: Nino Niederreiter had an assist in Portland’s 4-2 win over Kelowna Friday.
The local paper that covers the Winterhawks is on NYIFC prospect blog for those who would like to follow Nino Niederreiter’s game by game progress.
Good night to do some blog entries apparently.
Lewiston Maineiacs website & Sun-Journal: Justin Pelletier reports the Moncton Wildcats traded Islander prospect Kirill Kabanov to Lewiston for a package of draft selections in next summer’s QMJHL entry draft, along with 17-year-old net-minder Jordan Kennedy.
Lewiston GM Roger Shannon, Coach J.F. Houle and Managing Consultant, Bill Schurman comment on trade that includes following on paperwork and Immigration status:
“We know they don’t work on weekends, so unless he goes down and everything is absolutely taken care of tomorrow, this weekend is out,” Shannon said. “But having him in town next week for the game against Quebec is still a possibility.”
“We’re working hard on that right now,” Schurman said. “We’re hoping we can get the t’s crossed and the i’s dotted and have him the lineup, maybe by Wednesday.”
Moncton Wildcats: GM/Head coach/Former Islander assistant coach Danny Flynn had the following statement on the trade:
“Kirill is a talent. I want to wish him the best of luck in Lewiston. In return we receive a young player and 4 draft picks that will help us maintain a solid future for the Wildcats.”
In short Lewiston (Lewiston, Maine) are the only QMJHL team located in the United States, hence the possible paperwork and immigration issues/delays.
Times/Transcipt: Neil Hodge had more from Danny Flynn on why Kabanov was traded.
“There were no issues here at all this season that prompted this move. This was purely a hockey trade. It was something that we’ve talked about for quite some time.
“It was a difficult decision to trade him, but we just thought this made sense from the standpoint of the future of this franchise. Acquiring a good young goaltender and four significant draft picks gives us options.”
As for the hockey situation it was obvious Kabanov had worn out his welcome in Moncton, regardless of his recent departure for personal reasons or Danny Flynn’s classy statement. If a professional like Flynn/Wildcat management decided to make such a trade this reflects very poorly on Kabanov, who’s interviews contradict his actions.
Obviously Lewiston management thinks very highly of Kabanov, it’s now all up to him to develop on and off the ice. It said a lot the Islanders demoted him before a single exhibition game, when they needed prospects for split-squad contests.
The rest is all words and speculation. Mr Pelletier the other day had some speculation on Kabanov being traded, it was not packed with source game, so I added it in twitter updates here.
For reference former draft pick Max Gratchev from 2007/4th round also played in Lewiston.
NYIFC Prospect blog is updated with change for Kabanov.
Espn.com: Joe McDonald has an in-depth conversation with Islanders Head Coach Scott Gordon, regarding John Tavares about his first season in the NHL.
The best commentary from Scott Gordon since he was hired as he goes through the details of how the staff worked with Tavares during the 2009-10 season.
If you read one article about Tavares-Gordon this is the one. Great insights from the coach on how he will forget that Tavares is nineteen, what happened when Tavares struggled, and looking ahead for the 2009 first round selection.
Kingston Whig Standard: Mike Koreen has the first comments from seventh round selection, goaltender, Cody Rosen on being selected by New York with the club’s final pick in the draft, and his conversations with general manager, Garth Snow.
Moncton Telegraph: Neil Hodge has some quotes from Wildcats, head coach Danny Flynn, on Brandon Gormley (winner of Michael Bossy Trophy this past season as the QMJHL’s top professional prospect) while the writer gives some background on Kirill Kabanov.
Times and Transcript: Chris Johnston has many repeat comments from Kabanov’s press conference Saturday.
Sault St Marie Evening News: Rob Roos reports on Doug Weight being inducted into the Lake Superior Athletic Sports Hall of Fame Saturday night, during a banquet at the LSSU Arts Center, as he discusses his injury status, how it hampered him a year ago, and returning to the Islanders as captain in 2010-11.
Wilon Patch: Bob Birge reports on the Danbury Whalers’ franchise that will debut in the new Federal League this fall, with Sound Tiger assistant, Pat Bingham’s comments.
The free agency section has been created, the twitter box will be back as a blog entry around 5pm, as full time coverage for the draft weekend comes to an end at NYIFC.
Prospect blog now has all 2010 draft picks, draft links moved to prospect section of this page.
New York got the wild card at 65 in Kirill Kabanov, with his ITV Interview from Los Angeles.
Tsn.ca: Have comments from Kirill Kabanov and general manager, Garth Snow.
NHL.com: Adam Kimelman, ahas comments from Islanders Quebec scout, Mario Saraceno, the Islanders’ Quebec scout who advocated for Kabanov at the draft table on the club looking this year for top-six skill level with some size, along with the two first rounders. This article also includes Garth Snow, and Kirill Kabanov’s comments.
New York Draft Picks:
82-Jason Clark with his ITV interview at the draft.
95-TRADED TO COLUMBUS (Isles trade #95 pick to Colorado or Columbus for 2011 third round pick)
125-D Tony DeHart.
155-160: TRADED TO ATLANTA (Islanders trade #155 and #160 to Atlanta for a 2011 fifth round pick)
185-Cody Rosen, goaltender, Clarkson ECAC.
The Islander website now has interviews and recap of selections being made from day, so I took down video from Friday night.
Once again, I will not attempt to play draft expert.
It takes years find out if the right selections were made. Indirectly or inadvertently perhaps, they sent a little message to Kirill Petrov/agent with this pick, even though he is coming to summer camp.
Regardless Kabanov is an excellent gamble in round three, and not tied to another KHL team.
I will add perhaps, Garth Snow/staff had a few words with former assistant, Danny Flynn before making this pick, but from here it’s up to Kabanov.
I’m not going to mislead anyone, I did not really follow his story so I don’t know, all I can write is he has now been drafted by an NHL organization. If he wants to earn a professional contract, part of his learning process will be to conduct himself with professionalism.
Aside from that some felt the club, needed a top defenseman, they only got one later and moved three other selections, for picks next summer or a possible trade in the coming days/weeks.
You know going in, I felt they needed a draft with some big forwards and I explained why, but what I think means absolutely nothing because again I’m not in Bridgeport watching the prospects develop or what management thinks of the progress of some players.
Tony DeHart is an overage player from OHL, who played two games in Springfield, so he may have to be signed and brought immediately to Bridgeport on a roster with several players locked into spots, including Anton Klementyev, he seems to be out of options in the CHL.
Garth Snow did not have a lot of luck out of Clarkson with his other two selections, and who knows why another goaltender given depth but it is a seventh rounder, who likely on paper replaces Jase Weslosky.
They did draft some taller players on a depth chart that needed them.
Aside from that, ask me in five years for most of these selections, we’re still wondering about Bergenheim, Comeau, Nielsen, Tambellini.