Stop Copying Me!

Uncle Ted

“Uncle” Ted Leonsis has always been an innovator. When he first acquired a controlling interest in the Washington Capitals, one of the first things he did was to re-vamp the game presentation. Now, you can’t go to a hockey arena without music, graphics, and video presentations galore.

The rest of the NHL is taking another page from Uncle Ted’s playbook this summer–plucking coaches from the minor and/or junior ranks and throwing them into the NHL fire.

After Bruce Boudreau was elevated to Caps head coach from their AHL Hershey Bears affiliate, he took the moribund team on a huge run to the playoffs (with just a little bit of help from a certain unfrozen millionaire caveman). Now, the Senators and the Panthers are hoping that they can make similar magic.

The Senators have hired Craig Hartsburg from the Sault Ste Marie Greyhounds. Granted, Hartsburg does have prior coaching experience with the Blackhawks and Ducks, but it wasn’t exactly distinguished–no playoffs or a first-round exit four out his five seasons behind the bench. Funny, but I thought the Sens already had that routine down pat.

The Panthers have gone deep into the unknown, plucking Peter DeBoer “War” of the Kitchener Rangers to be their new coach. DeBoer lands in a much better situation than Hartsburg, in my opinion. The Panthers haven’t sniffed the playoffs in ages, and haven’t done anything at all worthy of note since being served up to the Rangers in 1994 Scott Mellanby first charmed the world with his extermination skills. DeBoer has nowhere to go but up. Plus, he is in the same division as Boudreau, so he can better copy his coaching moves (Step 1: kidnap Ovechkin and fit him for a Panthers sweater; Step 2: Repeat, substituting “Mike Green” for “Ovechkin” in Step 1).

Other Leonsis moves that NHL owners plan to copy this offseason:

  • Phil Anschutz wants to start his own “cool blag deal, or whatever the kids call it.”
  • Tom Hicks wants to sample some Greek on his next trip to his favorite Nevada “ranch”.
  • Charles Wang wants to grow a cool goatee. Also, he’d like his team to not suck.
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9 Comments

  1. And Every owner wants an XXXXXXL OvieTime t-shirt, just like Uncle Ted….

  2. Funny, but I thought the Sens already had that routine down pat.

    Okay, that’s…that’s…just mean.

    In The Bryan’s defence, “Hartsburg” was the first ping-pong ball to come out of the big drum.

  3. Oh, and I forgot one:

    — Dave Checketts is going to invite a MYFO editor to his owner’s suite (hint, hint)

  4. @lenoceur: Raskol will love that.

  5. The Panthers haven’t sniffed the playoffs in ages, and haven’t done anything at all worthy of note since being served up to the Rangers in 1994.

    Are we forgetting the rat infestation of `96?

  6. “The Panthers haven’t sniffed the playoffs in ages, and haven’t done anything at all worthy of note since being served up to the Rangers in 1994.”

    This quote doesn’t make any sense… the Panthers never made the Playoffs in ’94, their first season in the league. Oh, silly American columnists…

  7. @ Owen Heart Fan Club; @ Layneriffic: Yes, I’m an idiot. I’ll show myself out.

  8. holy crap is that a creepy picture.

  9. Bringing AHL coaches straight to the NHL isn’t all that unprecendented. See: Hartley, Bob; Colorado Avalanche circa 1998. He, too, came direct from the AHL — Hersey, in fact — and if memory serves, won a Cup with some guy named Ray in 2001 :)


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