Wednesday, June 13, 2007

HOLY FUCKING HELL

Ding, dong, the witch is dead!

In typical Sutter style, a surprise announcement crazy-ass rumour was unleashed late tonight on the hockey world. I've only been a week, really, into the post-season; it's obvious Darryl's been a busy boy for longer.

Yeah. Mike Keenan. Huh. I've never liked him - he's struck me as a hardass and well, a jackass over the years. I enjoyed it as much as an eight-year-old can when Calgary knocked his Blackhawks out of the playoffs en route to winning the Cup in '89. However, he may be just what the doctor ordered.

He's through and through a Sutter guy. We know the GM of the Flames enjoys surrounding himself with guys he knows well and trusts to get the job done. Think Kipper. Think Brad Stuart. Think Tony Amonte. It's not that much of a stretch to see that extend to the coaching staff as well.

One of the flaws Calgary had this year (and really, there's very little denying it) was a marked lack of discipline under the leadership of Playfair. It showed in Jimmy's awkward and colourblind pairing of suits and ties, it showed in (is this a cliche yet? I can't think of how many times I've typed those words) the Flames' abysmal road record. The team's dominance at home proved that we had the tools to put it all together, but our inability to do so was a massive frustration for all over the course of the season. There will be no slacking with Iron Mike. Either we get our act together, or we see a spectacular implosion, say, November 4th.

Also. Remember when we got Conroy back? When we got Stuart and Primeau? Many out there said this was a clear sign that Sutter was going all in for the playoffs. We're not in that disimilar a situation. This year there's a fair bit of work in terms of signings to get done, but next year will be beyond huge. This season is a contract year for Iginla, Regehr and Kiprusoff. A good majority of the rest of the team will need to be resigned in between here and September 2008; it's pretty much now or never, especially if you observe the fact (cough, you who pointed it out to me know who you are. Bastard.) that Iginla is effin' amazing when it's time to ink one.

It's now or never; the window is getting smaller. Keenan's another part of the push to field a winner with this golden opportunity, with this core we've spent years building in place and who are finally in their prime. I'm starting to suspect bigger changes may be in the works should Calgary come out another year with an early exit in the playoffs - it's clear they're even more all business now.

(Think about just how beyond awesome games vs. Vancouver will be now. Mwhahaha!)

6 comments:

  1. yeah. a shocker, to be sure. but i can't say i'm not curious what a REAL coach can do with the talent on this team. people are whingeing about huselius but y'know what ? juice has proven his worth and skill, and keenan is no idiot. i'm liking the idea more and more ---ESPECIALLY if when, realisitically, there is such a slim chance that the core unit of this team (kipper/iggy/regehr/phaneuf) will still be together come playoffs...

    yep

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  2. I think the thing people forget about Huselius is that he isn't the same player he was in Florida. One thing is that he's very much a proven quantity...but the other is that his time in Calgary has turned him into a much more responsible player.

    I see the reaction in the blogosphere to this is generally negative...but I want to see what happens.

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  3. Let's not be blinded by our hate-Playfair devotion. The Flames don't just need a coach to win, they need a happy Huselius, Kipper and Iggy willing to re-sign, and no Glenn Anderson coming out of retirement. I'm still regretting that the Flames didn't get Andy Murray when they had the chance.

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  4. What's Brent Sutter up to?

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  5. Brent is babysitting for Darryl, apparently. The Rebels just picked up JD Watt from the Giants...

    And I don't know, Duncan... it's not just a hate-Playfair thing. I think it's fair to acknowledge that coaching was an issue last year, and this thing with Keenan is pretty much an admission on the team's part that yeah, they know it has to be better too.

    And please don't utter the name "Glenn Anderson" here. You don't know the sort of danger you've put me in ;)

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  6. ohhhhhhgghhhgggghhh anndy murrray..... :(

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