I tried to watch last nightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s game to the bitter end, but I failed. I gave up watching after that perfect screen by Scuderi (FleuryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s favorite defenseman) on the third goal. I just couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t take it anymore , and IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m not sure how much more of this I can take. Tomorrow night, for instance, the Pens play Carolina and it conflicts with the Olympic opening ceremonies. I know which one IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll be watching, and it ainÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t the Pens. The chances of them coming within 5 goals of the Canes are nil. Anyway, what follows is an old-fashioned MCM rant. I have tried to bite my tongue all year, but I just canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t take it any more.
This is, bar none, the worst team in hockey. It is a disgrace to the uniforms they wear. There is no talent. There is no effort. There is no direction. There is no guidance. There is nothing that a normal NHL team has.
It starts at the top, and , yes, I mean the TOP. Between Mario and CP, they put this debacle of a team together. Make no mistake, Mario had at least some say in the guys they signed, and how much was offered to them. To not blame him is to have your head in the sand. But the clueless GM gets the majority of the blame. Had he been doing his job for the last 10 years, they would not have been in this predicament. Had he properly drafted and developed players, Ã¢â‚¬Å“survival modeÃ¢â‚¬ï¿¾ would have meant selling off stars, but replacing them with young guys in the minors who were ready for NHL action. None of that happened, and why this idiot still has a job is a testament to how pervasive FOM status is. I for one, will be happy when the team is sold, so that decisions are based on merit rather than cronyism.
As for the coach, well, letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just say right now the coach simply does not matter.
Record under Edzo: 8-17-6
Record under Therrien: 4-17-5
You canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t make chicken salad out of chicken sh*t. Do I think Therrien is a good coach? No, I have seen no evidence of that. The lack of effort that got Edzo fired is becoming just as glaring now. There is still no accountability, otherwise Shane Endumbcott would not be taking up roster space. Seriously, the team I have seen out there the last week is the same team Is aw before Edzo got the boot. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t give me that they played Ottawa twice. Do you realize Ottawa has not won a game against a team other than the Pens in their last 6? They are not playing well at all. But the Pens made them look like the Red Army team.
And why is that? Because they have very few guys on this roster who should be playing in the NHL. LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s look at it.
RecchiÃ¢â‚¬â€in a supporting role maybe
SurovyÃ¢â‚¬â€only if heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s hot, which doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t happen too often
OuelletÃ¢â‚¬â€borderline due to inability to play 5-on-5
MaloneÃ¢â‚¬â€only when he feels like trying
RoyÃ¢â‚¬â€maybe, but at half the salary
BogunieckiÃ¢â‚¬â€nice supporting player
EndicottÃ¢â‚¬â€not even AHL caliber
KoltsovÃ¢â‚¬â€needs to try Olympic speed skating, does not belong in the NHL
GoncharÃ¢â‚¬â€yes, but at half the salary
WhitneyÃ¢â‚¬â€not right now he doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t, he is just bad, maybe in the future
CairnsÃ¢â‚¬â€at least can play a role
See, not much there. So we are reduced, as always, to talking about the guys in the pipeline, like Malkin, Welch, and, well, thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s about it as far as top prospects go. Where is the help going to come from? Where is the scoring going to suddenly emerge from? I just donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t see it. Malkin will help, of course, but they really donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have one winger, either in Pittsburgh or on the way, who you can say is a goal scorer. It really is pathetic when you sit down and analyze it.
And thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why I have lost hope, not only for this year, but for the future as well. Until this organization is cleaned out from the top down, it will be hard to rediscover that feeling of hope for the future. Because even if they have good prospects, they always seem to flop when they get to the bigs (see Whitney). That means they are either coached poorly or the organization oversells them. Either way, I have no confidence in anyone in the organization to turn this thing around, and that is what distresses me.