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Zamboni

NEXT COACH should be? mega thread ...

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3 hours ago, ... said:
STL 1986–87 80 32 33 15 79 1st in Norris 2 4 .333 Lost in First round
STL 1987–88 80 34 38 8 76 2nd in Norris 5 5 .500 Lost in Second round
OTT 1995–96 38 10 24 4 (41) 6th in Northeast 0 0 Missed Playoffs
OTT 1996–97 82 31 36 15 77 3rd in Northeast 3 4 .429 Lost in First round
OTT 1997–98 82 34 33 15 - 83 5th in Northeast 5 6 .455 Lost in Second round
OTT 1998–99 82 44 23 15 - 103 1st in Northeast 0 4 .000 Lost in First round
OTT 1999–2000 82 41 28 11 2 95 2nd in Northeast 2 4 .333 Lost in First round
OTT 2000–01 82 48 21 9 4 109 1st in Northeast 0 4 .000 Lost in First round
OTT 2001–02 80 38 26 9 7 94 3rd in Northeast 7 5 .583 Lost in Second round
OTT 2002–03 82 52 21 8 1 113 1st in Northeast 11 7 .611 Lost in Conf. Finals
OTT 2003–04 82 43 23 10 6 102 3rd in Northeast 3 4 .429 Lost in First round
FLA 2005–06 82 37 34 11 85 4th in Southeast 0 0 Missed Playoffs
FLA 2006–07 82 35 31 16 86 4th in Southeast 0 0 Missed Playoffs
FLA 2007–08 82 38 35 9 85 3rd in Southeast 0 0 Missed Playoffs
MTL 2009–10 82 39 33 10 88 4th in Northeast 9 10 .474 Lost in Conf. Finals
MTL 2010–11 82 44 30 8 96 2nd in Northeast 3 4 .429 Lost in First round
MTL 2011–12 32 13 12 7 (78) 5th in Northeast - - - (fired)

 

I don't see any Stanley Cups there. Lots of first round exits. Probably very similar to Lindy's record.

Unless he's an actual proponent of using advanced stats as a tool, and actually uses them, I'd prefer to take a chance on a "modern" style coach.  

 

A lot of those early playoff exits were at the hands of our Sabres & the Leafs. Hasek & Joseph were probably a big part in their defeats. But yeah I agree i'd rather have someone else. Although from what I've read, Martin does a good job with coaching up younger players & of course he is experienced. I'd just prefer someone with more upside.

If JBotts hires Martin its almost as if Pittsburghs coaches are to the Sabres as the Carolina Panthers players are to the Buffalo Bills.

On one hand it makes sense since theres that familiarity but also seems very safe & uninspiring.

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45 minutes ago, dudacek said:

Coaches get fired if they don’t win. The Sabres record with turnover is nothing to be proud of, but it’s not unusual and I doubt it will deter many coaches -particularly non-established coaches - from pursuing the job.

Smith was not available to talk to prior to yesterday and Keefe won’t be until the Marlies are knocked out.

I tend to agree with this, I'm not sure how much the turnover rate would factor in. But from what we've heard, it does appear McLellan, at least, turned down the Sabres, for reasons only know to him. It's trusting the wording of that article that said we failed to grab him, and it could be wrong, but I don't believe it's been contradicted elsewhere. 

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23 minutes ago, PASabreFan said:

Especially unattractive for a first-time head coach. 

Really?  Is it?  To take a job which would triple/quadruple your salary, along with a title that you have been desperately wanting, in a world where only 31 of these jobs exist.  It’s literally a wonderful, life changing event.  I have a very difficult time imagining that many (any?) first timers would turn down the opportunity to coach the Sabres.

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24 minutes ago, PASabreFan said:

Is this anything?:

Botterill has admitted he didn't do a good enough job with the roster. He's coming into a critical year 3 under an owner who is seen as someone who likes to fire people. Suddenly having enough to win with and make the playoffs with is hardly a given, and if the team underperforms again, Botterill is probably gone. As much as coaching for one year and then collecting on two or three or four years of the rest of the contract sounds fantastic, who wants to move his life with the very real chance it'll be one season and done? Especially unattractive for a first-time head coach. And it can't sound that great for someone who already has rep and cred.

I wonder how much all of that could be hurting the search.

Do we think Botterill is on that much of a hot seat?

I know the fans are restless, but the league in general seems to think we are an unrealistic bunch and that Botterill is quality people.

I think there are a lot of reasons for Terry to want to hang on to Jason, not the least of which are the twin ego-driven pushes of not pushing the perception of instability, and the fact he stressed that his was his hire.

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1 hour ago, PASabreFan said:

Is this anything?:

Botterill has admitted he didn't do a good enough job with the roster. He's coming into a critical year 3 under an owner who is seen as someone who likes to fire people. Suddenly having enough to win with and make the playoffs with is hardly a given, and if the team underperforms again, Botterill is probably gone. As much as coaching for one year and then collecting on two or three or four years of the rest of the contract sounds fantastic, who wants to move his life with the very real chance it'll be one season and done? Especially unattractive for a first-time head coach. And it can't sound that great for someone who already has rep and cred.

I wonder how much all of that could be hurting the search.

Agreed. Due to Botterill being moving closer to the hot seat, maybe candidates are seeing that 5 year contract as really a 2 year one. The rebuild is nearly done. I’d say Botts has 2 years to be a decent playoff contender or he’s out. Sure, coaching contracts are guaranteed money, but who really wants to uproot their family for 2 years into an unstable situation. 

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I Think JB has one more full season at the least. If the team does well, he’ll get more than the 2019-2020 season.

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3 hours ago, nfreeman said:

Not psyched about Martin.

Not psyched about Gronborg either -- I think they need someone who is familiar with the NHL game, including the players and coaches he'll be opposing.

this is why i haven’t gone crazy for gronberg. i also don’t want any chance there’s locker room tension over the swedish coach and all the swedish players. he’s on my list but there’s certainly guys i’d want over him.

11 minutes ago, Zamboni said:

I Think JB has one more full season at the least. If the team does well, he’ll get more than the 2019-2020 season.

if this team isn’t in the playoff hunt at the very end of the season i’ll probably join those calling for change. i’m not quite “playoffs or bust” on him yet.

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29 minutes ago, kas23 said:

Agreed. Due to Botterill being moving closer to the hot seat, maybe candidates are seeing that 5 year contract as really a 2 year one. The rebuild is nearly done. I’d say Botts has 2 years to be a decent playoff contender or he’s out. Sure, coaching contracts are guaranteed money, but who really wants to uproot their family for 2 years into an unstable situation. 

Would you uproot your family for 2 years if it would ensure financial security for the rest of your life?  That’s the worst case scenario.  

Other potential outcomes include wildly advancing your career, fulfilling lifelong dreams, even more money, etc, etc

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3 hours ago, ... said:

Obviously not.  The callers to WGR are a mere sliver of the total fan base, so if you think that's who Sabres fans are you're pretty mistaken.  Those are Sabres fans who call talk shows.  This is not to say the info coming from WGR is poor, just the callers are, and many times it's difficult for the show hosts to hide their impatience with those callers.

Do you know how big hockey is around here?  How many kids and adults play in some sort of league?  That in itself raises the understanding of the game and cognizance of what should or should not be done to escalate chances at winning.  The general social atmosphere around here involves discussing hockey, discussing what the Sabres do.  Nearly anyone interested in the team learns about hockey organically.  Few people don't want to share what they think or know.

I would consider this to be a sophisticated hockey market.  Therefore, you can get away with a tank, like we did.  You can explain what a re-building process is and it will buy the organization "time" because, generally, Sabres fans understand why things are they way they are and understand how the game works.

Between what WGR talks about, the Athletic and the News, not to mention the entirety of the interwebz, we get a lot of solid information and education on hockey (just like anything else).  People around here eat it up.  We all know advanced stats exist, we all know they need to be used as a tool to aid in winning.  

The fans, in general, recognize:

  • Murray was an attempt to be contenders within a short amount of time.  
  • Nolan was re-hired because fans love him and we needed to tank.
  • Bylsma was a superficial hire based on availability, name recognition, with no real respect for the fact that he didn't earn his ring.
  • Botterill was, perhaps, the first thoughtful hire by the Pegulas.
  • Housely was a disaster that no one expected.

So, now, do they retreat to the "we just need to get into the off-season to please them all" camp?  Because if they go this route, the odds are good we're going to want this guy fired after a while, or that, like Martin's record (and Ruff's), he might get you to the big dance once, but you won't win it.  The goal was to win Cups...with a "s".

Or do they take a chance on someone new who is ostensibly on the "cutting edge" of hockey game management?  Whose future in the NHL is yet unknown, but, like a first round pick, whose potential is unlimited?

What do you think the fans would appreciate more?

 

 

Thank you. I really appreciate your take on all you said here. 

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6 minutes ago, Curtisp5286 said:

Would you uproot your family for 2 years if it would ensure financial security for the rest of your life?  That’s the worst case scenario.  

Other potential outcomes include wildly advancing your career, fulfilling lifelong dreams, even more money, etc, etc

It’s not unheard of for NFL “hot assistants” to turn down NFL coaching jobs/interviews. Some even quit before even starting (McDaniels). Why? Maybe they are afraid of failure, that their incompetences will get exposed. Maybe they want the perfect situation for their first time. Maybe they only want to go to a stable organization with a history of winning. One thing is sure, their old jobs won’t be held for them if they decide to come back and it’s possible they may never get another chance to be an NHL HC again. This is just for rookie coaches. The retreads we are looking are probably already financially set and are likely still getting paid by the team that fired them.

 

 

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1 hour ago, PASabreFan said:

Is this anything?:

Botterill has admitted he didn't do a good enough job with the roster. He's coming into a critical year 3 under an owner who is seen as someone who likes to fire people. Suddenly having enough to win with and make the playoffs with is hardly a given, and if the team underperforms again, Botterill is probably gone. As much as coaching for one year and then collecting on two or three or four years of the rest of the contract sounds fantastic, who wants to move his life with the very real chance it'll be one season and done? Especially unattractive for a first-time head coach. And it can't sound that great for someone who already has rep and cred.

I wonder how much all of that could be hurting the search.

Thank you, PA.

I understand why people think that there only being 31 jobs makes any head coaching position attractive.  It certainly does.  But if someone has options or doubts, I should think that your thought process is part of his thought process.  And I will add on the following:

In all our griping about Housley's lousy line combinations and defence pairings, let us recall that our opening night roster included at least as many guys who had no business being in the NHL (Sobotka, Elie, Thompson) as there were clear top-6 players.  Just adding a full line of clearly NHL-level fourth-line possession players, even if they would have a hard time finishing a bag of popcorn let alone a scoring chance, would have been a significant improvement.

Even if it is not a major factor, I can't believe that this wouldn't give anyone pause about taking the Sabres' job.  Surely if you have options, you have to at least think, "is this really the best I can do?"

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36 minutes ago, kas23 said:

It’s not unheard of for NFL “hot assistants” to turn down NFL coaching jobs/interviews. Some even quit before even starting (McDaniels). Why? Maybe they are afraid of failure, that their incompetences will get exposed. Maybe they want the perfect situation for their first time. Maybe they only want to go to a stable organization with a history of winning. One thing is sure, their old jobs won’t be held for them if they decide to come back and it’s possible they may never get another chance to be an NHL HC again. This is just for rookie coaches. The retreads we are looking are probably already financially set and are likely still getting paid by the team that fired them.

 

 

Totally different situation in my eyes.  NFL Off/Def Coordinators make close to $1M/yr, with some of the top guys well over that.  AHL Head Coaches and NHL assistants make considerably less, I believe in the 150-300k range.  That’s nice money, but you can’t retire off a few years of $200k.  However, if you can secure a 3yr NHL HC contract, at $1.25M per, that is truly life changing money, not just for you, but for your family.  

For these guys there is no guarantee that another NHL HC job offer comes along.  

Say you are DJ Smith, Babcock’s AC in TOR.  You turn down the Sabres HC offering 2019.  Next year TOR loses in the first round again and Bab gets canned.  Dubas gives Keefe the HC job.  Keefe doesn’t really want you on his staff though, looking for someone more experienced to help the first time HC.  So you have to go find a new job anyway.  Lamarello liked you as an AC from when he was GM in TOR so he offers you the AHL HC job there.  It’s a good job but the team doesn’t have a lot of talent and can’t get them anywhere in the AHL playoffs.  NHL GM’s aren’t really falling over themselves to hire AHL coaches who aren’t winning big.  You get 1 or 2 HC interviews over the next few years but they go to other people.  You decide that if you are going to get noticed you are going to need to make a change and you are able to get a job as an NHL AC in BUF under HC Grönborg.  They are one of the best teams in the league and the GM Botterill has always liked you (he once offered you the HC job after all).  So you stay in BUF as an AC for a few years, you win the Cup with them in 2026 and are able to get a HC job in Columbus after the 2027 season!  3 years at $1.75M per, $5.25M guaranteed money!  Finally, you’ve made it!

I got a little creative here, but I hope my point was clear.  This scenario I laid out would not be particularly uncommon (apart from a BUF winning the Cup of course).  There are no guarantees for these guys that the job they choose to stay at will still be there 1-2 years from now.  They don’t have much job stability even if they decide pass on that HC job that they could get fired from in 2 years.  There is no guarantee for these first time guys that another HC opportunity comes along or if it does it could 5, 6, 7, 8 years from now.  

What if you turn down a big money job like that, then a few years later come down with cancer or are in a serious car accident.  Your family would never have that money.  Unlikely, I know, but real people think about stuff like that when they are making major decisions. Add in that this is probably a lifelong dream for these guys and I would be shocked if guys turn down what would be their first NHL HC job with any regularity.  I won’t say never, but I would guess that it’s an extreme exception.  

I agree that previous HCs who have made millions already are probably more picky.

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3 hours ago, dudacek said:

Do we think Botterill is on that much of a hot seat?

I know the fans are restless, but the league in general seems to think we are an unrealistic bunch and that Botterill is quality people.

I think there are a lot of reasons for Terry to want to hang on to Jason, not the least of which are the twin ego-driven pushes of not pushing the perception of instability, and the fact he stressed that his was his hire.

I think we'll get a pretty good idea on how hot his seat is based on his offseason moves. 

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2 hours ago, Hoss said:

this is why i haven’t gone crazy for gronberg. i also don’t want any chance there’s locker room tension over the swedish coach and all the swedish players. he’s on my list but there’s certainly guys i’d want over him.

if this team isn’t in the playoff hunt at the very end of the season i’ll probably join those calling for change. i’m not quite “playoffs or bust” on him yet.

This is about where I'm at I think. 

Botterill has nothing to show for his first two full years as GM, he's achieved nothing, whether at the NHL level or the AHL. Frankly, a good argument could be made that if you can't field a playoff team in 3 full years, it's time to go. 

Like you I'm not quite there right now, but this coming season needs to be, at the very least, an "eliminated in the last couple days" type deal. 

I still absolutely think the only reasonable barometer of success next year is playoffs, that needs to be the goal. If they fall short, they've failed. But that doesn't mean I'm calling for the GM's head. 

If we stink for 3 seasons though he should be gonzo. 

Edited by Thorny

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