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nfreeman

Should we root for the Sabres to lose out?

Do you support a mini-tank?  

75 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you want the Sabres to lose as many more games as possible to improve their draft position?

    • Yes
      36
    • No
      39
  2. 2. Regardless of what you find yourself rooting for when you're being honest with yourself, do you think you SHOULD want the Sabres to lose in order to improve their draft position?

    • Yes
      21
    • No
      54
  3. 3. Did you support tanking for Eichel?

    • Yes
      53
    • No
      22


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4 minutes ago, Claude Balls said:

I've been holding back on saying this, but I've come to the conclusion that Housley is a ***** idiot. Don't like to insult people like that, but his lip service BS post game pressers have become a complete joke. It's the same ***** after every loss. How about some accountability Phil? You suck and your team shows it in unfathomable ways night after night.

He doesn't seem very bright, in general.  In theory, though, he should be intelligent in the field of hockey.  He doesn't seem intelligent in that manner though either.   His player usage has straight up shown a lack of hockey understanding IMO, fairly consistently.  

The best players seem to often make poor coaches. 

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6 minutes ago, Kruppstahl said:

He doesn't seem very bright, in general.  In theory, though, he should be intelligent in the field of hockey.  He doesn't seem intelligent in that manner though either.   His player usage has straight up shown a lack of hockey understanding IMO, fairly consistently.  

The best players seem to often make poor coaches. 

The best coaches are the guys with a little piss and vinegar in their veins. It's always been that way. Even Bowman had some attitude.

Edited by Claude Balls

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1 hour ago, PASabreFan said:

Confusing reply. "Now" didn't seem to be in December and January when the season was still salvageable, and that's what I'm talking about. Those are decent trades (jury still out on Skinner; if he doesn't sign it was a wash). Botterill hardly sacrificed long term gains. This debate always seems like a false choice to me — there's some middle ground where both the present and future can be respected.

My point is that I think he’s trying to do that, it just hasn’t worked.

Could he have pulled the trigger on a serviceable centre in December? Maybe. Would that mean we have Kevin Hayes instead of Montour? Maybe. Would we have been better off? Maybe?

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34 minutes ago, Kruppstahl said:

He doesn't seem very bright, in general.  In theory, though, he should be intelligent in the field of hockey.  He doesn't seem intelligent in that manner though either.   His player usage has straight up shown a lack of hockey understanding IMO, fairly consistently.  

The best players seem to often make poor coaches. 

Housley has struck me as having rational, defensible thoughts about the game when he is asked questions regarding the technical aspects out the game. His public persona also strikes me as calculated.

Ive always wanted to see a real, professional coach talk x’s and o’s with the Mike Schopps of the world. I think the hubris of the armchair expert would get punctured in a hurry. There are not many Bill Laforges and John Brophys at the top of the game any more.

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5 hours ago, Gatorman0519 said:

The ROR deal torpedoed the season.  It’s unarguable now.  

I watch.  I’m used to losing now.  So it doesn’t bother me as much, 

You’re used to losing??... What about the locker room??... What is most disturbing is it doesn’t seem to bother the players much, either... With the exception of Eichel, Skinner, Reinhardt... the rest of the players have limited impact... If it weren’t for decent goaltending, it would be truly ugly... Housley commands no respect with this bunch... Botterill needs to makes changes... Get some players with skill, grit, and pride... who love scoring and love winning so much... they refuse to quit in any game...

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No tanking... This team needs to stop losing... Housley should ask these Sabres to look in the mirror, commit to finish strong, and begin to rebuild some pride... Let Botterill work the draft... Let Housley coach the coachable players through their offseason programs... Let the team come back recharged as winners next season...

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1 hour ago, dudacek said:

Housley has struck me as having rational, defensible thoughts about the game when he is asked questions regarding the technical aspects out the game. His public persona also strikes me as calculated.

Ive always wanted to see a real, professional coach talk x’s and o’s with the Mike Schopps of the world. I think the hubris of the armchair expert would get punctured in a hurry. There are not many Bill Laforges and John Brophys at the top of the game any more.

Well you probably know that Mike Schopp has mentioned quite consistently, all season long, that Housley never has a good answer to those types of questions.  Something that makes you think he has it figured out.  It's usually the opposite. 

I am on Schoop's side in that.  Was it last game or the game before?  Paul Hamilton asked something about effort and Housley started reeling, going off on a tangent about getting some bad calls from the refs, etc.  It was a game where the only theme was a lack of effort and what the hell is going on over there, and Phil's response was to ramble on about poor officiating and some other stuff.  

 

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4 hours ago, dudacek said:

 

He’s made four major trades and three of them he traded futures for guys that can help now.

 

Well, the ROR, Kane and Scandy trades should be included on the list of major trades, and none included the Sabres parting with futures.

 

4 hours ago, dudacek said:

Agree with all of this, but being honest isn’t going to help either.

Because if he says Hunwick, Pominville, Berglund, Sobotka, Larsson, Girgensons, Okposo, Hutton, Sheary, Scandella, Wilson etc. were just placeholders all along, we will say “why did you waste our time with placeholders that sucked?”

And if he says the season was all about teaching and developing Eichel, Reinhart, Mittelstadt, Dahlin, McCabe, Ullmark, Nylander, Olofsson, Borgen, Thompson etc, we will say then “where is their ***** improvement?”

I think Botterill probably saw a season of ups and downs where we were better at the end of it than we were at the beginning. The overall results will reflect improvement, but it hasn’t happened in the way he envisioned and I’m not sure yet if he knows why. 

His plan is off the rails.

Don't go over to the dark side my friend.  They will get it right one of these years.  In the meantime Dahlin and Eichel, not to mention your favorite Kootenay alum, will provide plenty of good moments.

 

4 hours ago, SDS said:

I will beat this drum until the day I die or until I change my mind… 

My caring about the final score will never actually change the final score.  It is out of my sphere of influence. If I can’t affect the score then  incessantly complaining about it is wasted energy.  It is taking something that should be a positive and turning it into a negative. The world has enough negative.  

That’s why entertainment is my metric. If they are entertaining I will watch. If they are not entertaining, like they haven’t been in past recent years, I don’t watch. 

It’s been 49 years and not a single Stanley Cup. Who is better off – a person who ***** every single season that they didn’t win the Stanley Cup or the person who watches the games and enjoys the entertainment value? 

I will enjoy a winning season and a Stanley Cup as much as the next person. I just don’t let someone else losing a game, while making millions of $$$, negatively affect my day. 

 I’ll end with this golden oldie:

God grant me the serenity 
To accept the things I cannot change; 
Courage to change the things I can; 
And wisdom to know the difference. 

While I agree that they have been much more entertaining this year than in quite a few years, the percentage of stinker, not-in-the-least-entertaining games has steadily increased over the past couple of months to its current slot well north of 50%.

I also agree that getting too upset about a lousy hockey team isn't rational.  However, notwithstanding the venting that many here are indulging in, I think most here have perspective. 

To relate it to your entertainment point -- what's more entertaining than the euphoric, live-and-die roller coaster of playoff hockey?  That's what everyone wants -- not to complain about not winning the Cup -- just to enjoy moments, like, say, when Drury tied game 5 vs the Rangers with 7 seconds left in regulation and Max won it in OT. 

I want that again.  I want to look forward to the game all day and watch it on the edge of my seat and then post here for a couple of hours and then go to bed exhausted and thrilled.  And in November I thought I was getting that this season. 

 

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@nfreeman

As far as the trades go, I was strictly talking about the trades he made this off-season and season. And I wasn’t trying to suggest Botterill is trading away futures, just refuting the idea that he isn’t interested in making trades that help the team now. The fourth trade being ROR (where, even then, he did acquire two players with this year in mind.)

As for the other part, I’m not taking a defeatist attitude at all. It will get better and Botterill deserves time to make it happen.

Doesnt change the fact that we’ve seen exactly four players show expected growth this year - Eichel, Reinhart, Dahlin and Rodrigues - and not one of Botterill’s trade and free agent acquisitions have exceeded expectations. Few have even met them.

 

Edited by dudacek

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McCabe was also well improved over last year, although that perhaps was more of a bounce back than development.  And Skinner and perhaps Pilut exceeded expectations.  But I agree generally that JB hasn’t covered himself in glory. 

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Yes, we can’t forget Skinner. Hopefully that continues to work out.

Edited by dudacek

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Honestly I don't really care. I'd like to be entertained from here to the end but I'm not likely to get that either. We will lose a lot of the remaining games regardless of what we do or don't do so no conscious effort to lose is necessary but we won't draft 1 or 2 unless we miracle win the lottery so none of it matters. A decent player should be available where we draft. Let's hope we hit right and get the better one this time.

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9 hours ago, Claude Balls said:

The best coaches are the guys with a little piss and vinegar in their veins. It's always been that way. Even Bowman had some attitude.

Some?

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I understand the apathy towards the team at this point and how tiresome this discussion has become for many fans. 

To me the pointlessness of the discussion mainly stems from one issue,  which is that many fans aren't even talking about the same thing when discussing tanking.

For example, if you think that the Sabres tanked for Dahlin last year then you and I cant even begin to have an honest discussion around the pros and cons of the strategy since we cant even agree on what defines tanking in the first place.

Having said that I'm yes to all three, except for I will root for them to beat Carolina on Saturday since hurting the canes playoff chances registers higher on my fan satisfaction index than a potential miniscule increase in lottery odds.

 

 

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My votes;

1. No

2. No

3. Yes, because based on the moves TM had done at that point it was obvious we were set up to fail so why not try and get a number 1. 

Being Ok with a losing is not something I endorse. Now you do have to accept it does happen and not go bat sh!t crazy over it but I would hope every professional player wouldn't be Ok with it although they know it does happen even when you've played hard and or well. As long as effort and opportunity happened then you look forward for the next game to take the sting out of it.  

I also agree that the early season games were entertaining up till late November. Because they were playing well as a team and you could see the effort game in and game out especially during the 10 game streak. And if they hadn't won some of those I would have been fine because the efforts and smart team play appeared to be there and getting better. 

The last 3 months I have not seen close to the same level of entertainment and worse the same efforts or team play. I have noticed players who have improved but I am not convinced that's because of any coaching that's happening and not just experience and talent running its natural course. What I also see overall is less well coordinated/orchestrated team execution and effort. 

That's my disappointment playoffs or not. It sounds like a bunch of other fans here feel this way as well.

I find it a bit odd try and tell others how they should feel because they do not feel entertained or they are concerned or don't think we still have the right coach and have questions about the decision(s) that put us here again.

Aren't these boards for that type of discussion?                

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15 hours ago, SDS said:

It’s been 49 years and not a single Stanley Cup. Who is better off – a person who ***** every single season that they didn’t win the Stanley Cup or the person who watches the games and enjoys the entertainment value? 

Why can't both be equally OK? And why can't you do both?

There are all kinds of fans. All should be respected. Even the ones who watch once in a while and never feel bad when they lose. It's a big tent.

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I'm not in full-on tank mode this year.  Not like 2014-15, when I my celebration of Towes' two-goal outburst to turn what appeared to be a regulation win against Chicago into a regulation loss was almost Chris Drury game 5 against the Rags level.  More of mixed approach.  I cheer while they're playing, but I take solace in potential draft improvement (and greater chance of Housley being replaced) when they lose.

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I was on the fence. I don't want players on this team feeling the fans support a losing mentality. I am tired of accepting mediocrity. Fans are blaming the coach, and players appear to have checked out.

Think back to when the Sabres were winning -- some armchair quarterbacks are going to say they realized that the team wasn't that good from the analytics, but the fact remains, Buffalo was the #1 team in the NHL (for a day.) When they were winning, the naysayers were quiet. Playoff exuberance filled the airwaves and social media. Winning fixes everything.

And now, here we are:

This morning, I visited nhlnumbers.com for the first time EVER. After finding the draft simulator, the results were Buffalo with the number one pick. After what I have seen this season, I would absolutely accept that. I see there is hope. I see that we need some forward depth. Recipe calls for a little more seasoning and then a little more time on the grill. The higher that pick, the quicker we're ready. Let the chips fall where they may.

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@nfreeman

why bring up the tank again?  It’s ancient history at this point.  Whether you were for it or against it, the failure by management to execute this or any other rebuild strategy has brought us to where we are.   Most of the players traded away during the tank are done in the NHL or nearly so.  

In 2013 and early 2104 we traded away Leopold, Regehr, Pommers, Sekera, Vanek, Miller, Ott, Halak, a 3rd in 2015, Moulson and McCormick.  (You can add the Gaustad for a 1st also if you like)

in return we received 

3 prospects - Larsson, Hacket and Carrier

a net of 11 top 2 round picks, including 3 1sts. (12 picks and 4 1sts if you include the Gaustad deal).

We also received vets McBain, Mitchell, Stewart and Neuvirth and vets we soon re-traded Moulson (later stupidly re-signed) and Halak.  Mitchell, Stewart and Neuvirth were also subsequently traded for a 7th rd pick, a 2017 2nd and Chad Johnson and a 3rd in 2016.

 That’s the tank.  Ott, Leopold, Regehr, Gaustad, Moulson and McCormick are our of the NHL. Miller and Pommers nearly so.  Vanek and Sekera are still decent NHL players,  ur have limited futures as well. 

Honestly, I had zero problem with moving on from most of these players. Based on age and salary, many if not all of these guys would have had to be traded or let go to maintain the team and the cap.  We have debated the speed of which it was done.  It wasn’t the trades were ultimately the problem.  It was the poor execution of the strategy that was the real tragedy.  TM and DR did such a poor job of drafting, developing prospects and otherwise utilizing the assets from the tank that we are where we are.

As I’ve said before, all we really have to show from the tank is Eichel and Reinhart.  Larsson is a 4th liner with a very limited future here and and the oft injured and often ineffective and overpaid Bogo who will likely be gone when his contract expires after next season.  

Had we just kept our picks and had a little more luck with then we might have had Compher, Lemieux, Zadorov, McNabb, Cernak, Montour (as our own pick), Point, Boeser, Sergachev, Beauvillier and maybe even Aho. Add many of those guys to Jack, and Samson and we might all have a different opinion and the tank and the current team.

Edited by GASabresIUFAN

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I will likely never again advocate for the Sabres to engage in tanking,  which to me is defined as having as your publicly unstated goal at the beginning of the season to finish DFL. Then have your GM, from day one, intentionally manipulate the roster to make the team worse in order to achieve that goal. With the current way the lottery works, it doesnt really make sense to do this going forward.

I dont really believe there is much that can be done to do a "mini-tank" either, Botterills hands are pretty much tied at this point to purposely make the team worse in any impactful way. They just suck all on their own.

My fandom is binary at this point. Stanley Cup or bust. Sneaking into the playoffs ala the Bills two years ago with a team that has little shot at making much noise, let alone actually winning the hardest trophy in sports will do nothing for me. Therefore with that mindset, once it's clear the playoffs are out in any season I'm looking long game, and that involves getting the best talent for this team going forward. Which means wanting the best possible draft position, which in turn means being ok with losing a lot for the remainder of the season. If that makes me a bad fan, then I guess that's what I am.

 

Edited by Claude_Verret

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@GASabresIUFAN-- I brought up the Eichel tank mostly to distinguish it from the "mini-tank" approach that is the subject of this thread, as I think the 2 situations are qualitatively different.

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34 minutes ago, nfreeman said:

@GASabresIUFAN-- I brought up the Eichel tank mostly to distinguish it from the "mini-tank" approach that is the subject of this thread, as I think the 2 situations are qualitatively different.

I get it.   By the way, I do think that Jbot did “tank” last year’s roster to a certain extent.  How else do you explain signing Josefson, acquiring Nolan etc.

Jbot was definitely not tanking this season as shown by acquiring Montour at the deadline or going forward.  I think he is looking as these last few weeks as an evaluation period to see who is part of long solution long-term.  I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more call ups from Rochester to give guys a few games here and there. However since the Amerks are playing so well, I don’t think he’ll want to upset the Apple cart to much.

One big prediction for next year.  If the Sabres don’t get off to a really hot start next season, Housley will be gone and replaced by The Amerk’s Taylor.  

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4 minutes ago, GASabresIUFAN said:

I get it.   By the way, I do think that Jbot did “tank” last year’s roster to a certain extent.  How else do you explain signing Josefson, acquiring Nolan etc.

Jbot was definitely not tanking this season as shown by acquiring Montour at the deadline or going forward.  I think he is looking as these last few weeks as an evaluation period to see who is part of long solution long-term.  I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more call ups from Rochester to give guys a few games here and there. However since the Amerks are playing so well, I don’t think he’ll want to upset the Apple cart to much.

One big prediction for next year.  If the Sabres don’t get off to a really hot start next season, Housley will be gone and replaced by The Amerk’s Taylor.  

How much of an evaluation period does this guy need? Last season was supposedly 100% about evaluating the organization from top to bottom for the entire season and what did we get? Another highly disappointing season this year. I suppose he needs a few more weeks to figure out that Sobotka should be ashamed of even cashing his paycheck and Pominville should retire. If that's the case this guy is seriously slow on the uptake. Does he need the last dozen games to figure out Skinner, McCabe, and Rodriguez deserve raises and the rest of the guys coming up for new contracts at the end of the year should count themselves lucky just to get an offer.  

He turned Rochester around, but most of the players responsible won't ever be of any help to Buffalo. If we're lucky maybe one of the Pegula's will realize we need an expert to come in so they can demote FXGMJB to being the GM for Rochester at best.

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