I haven't been posting media links in a while. I presume that if visitors to my blog are desperate enough for Leaf news that they'll come here, they're already reading the papers.
That said, I think Tim Wharnsby's piece at Globe on Hockey is a great read. My only addendum to the article is how much I hate it when people respond to the notion of firing JFJ with the question, "But who would you replace him with?"
Think about that for a minute.
If someone in your organization has proven themselves to be incompetent and harmful to the company's bottom line, does anyone in your office step up and say:
"Yes, he has missed his targets for four years. His poor decision making skills and lack of foresight on market developments may have handcuffed our organization for years to come. He has consistently changed plans in mid-stream and still failed, but we can't fire him. Who are we going to replace him with?"Look, I'm not a hockey insider and as such I have no real or informed idea of which hockey executives are available, respected and highly regarded. The same goes for 99% of the people having this conversation, but this is what specialized executive search firms are for.
One last item.
Let's pretend that MLSE has seen enough. After 10 games they have fired the GM and they have hired JFJ as the new GM. (Yes, JFJ - stick with me on this one).
At the news conference announcing his hiring, MLSE state that they honestly believe this team has the talent to not just make the playoffs but to compete for the cup and that JFJ has free reign to make this team better.
Looking at the on-ice talent, organizational depth, the team's play in the first 10 games of the season and the way this team has performed over the past 2 years, what would a newly hired JFJ do?
How would a newly hired JFJ (new-JFJ) differ from the JFJ (JFJ-lite) we have today?
Does anyone believe that new-JFJ would take a totally different approach than the one JFJ-lite is likely to take for the rest of his tenure?
Does anyone believe new-JFJ would look at this team and think - "Once we get healthy, this team is going to make a run and be a serious threat for post-season success."
Personally, I think new-JFJ would act very differently than JFJ-lite and make some serious moves to make this team better. Looking at the team's past performance, it's the only logical conclusion I can come to.
I find it really interesting that the same man might look at the same situation and come to totally different conclusions based on his date of hire...