Thursday, November 08, 2007

Sharks Broken. In Need of Repairs.

I know we all have theories of what is wrong with out underachieving San Jose Sharks. I have preached patience at times. I have encouraged Dougie Wilson to explore a few trades. Is it the coaching? Is the biggest roster in size in the NHL smallest in heart? Is there a lack of a big time blueliner? Is the Captain to blame?

Take your pick - but there is something wrong in Teal Town. The boys played hard last night but some mental mistakes allowed two breakaway goals and Turco stood on his head, something every goalie from Aubin to Tim Thomas seems to do when the Sharks take the ice. So what do you do if you are Doug Wilson? You have to be racking your brain searching for an answer. While the season is not even 20% done, you have to be losing patience. I know the season ticket holders are, myself included. With reports of Neidermeyer now eyeing December for a return to the ice, the Sharks window of opportunity to grab the Pacific title by the horns is running out of time. So - what do you do?

Fire Ron Wilson? Make a major trade?

Most imporantly, it is a quesetion of philosophy. Doug Wilson has stated he admires the system that the Ottawa Senators have in place. They were patient with young players, allowed them to develop and made the major deal (Hossa for Heatley) that allowed them to take the next step. It looks like adding Joe Thornton is not going to be enough, Dougie. Here is my answer - this roster is flawed. We knew it during the offseason when Drury/Smyth/Souray/Redden all turned their backs on the Sharks. This team has too many duplicate players (Setoguchi/Cheechoo), too many big players who don't use their size (Bernier/McLaren) and too many centers (Goc/Mitchell/Pavelski). A statement needs to be made to this team that management isn't willing to wait and watch them flounder about. Marleau endured a painful offseason after a terrible playoff performance and how has he responded - with five points and a -4 rating. Trade Marleau - the Captain and the root of the emotional weakness of this team. He has a two year extension (very carefully constructed that he could be traded this year before his no trade clause takes effect). Trade him now and get new, veteran pieces - not young players for the future - but guys who can help NOW and change the landscape of this team. Get a back up for Nabby, who has never proved he can endure a full season as the #1.

To Boston: Patrick Marleau and Christian Ehrhoff
To San Jose: Glen Murray, Chuck Kobasew and Zdeno Chara

Time to Shake It Up!


Earl Sleek said...

Interesting. I've watched quite a few Shark games, and I don't know what the solution is. I will say this, though--I would count a lot of their losses in the somewhat "encouraging" category--yeah the results sucked but the team seemed good enough to win.

To Boston: Patrick Marleau and Christian Ehrhoff
To San Jose: Glen Murray, Chuck Kobasew and Zdeno Chara

I always figured that some teams will not be trading for a long time after past one-sided fiascos: I don't foresee any Anaheim-Edmonton trades, and I don't know whether Boston wants another "deal" with the Sharks.

Can'tStoptheGrier said...

Agreed - losses like last night could be attributed to poor calls by the refs, excellent goaltending by Turco and just hard luck but there have been too many "bad" losses so far, twice to Detroit, one to LA and one to Colorado, to discount the problem.

I was one who shouted - keep Marleau, let him prove that the playoffs was a fluke - and do I believe he will still come around, yes I do, he is too good not to - but is he is voice and captain this team needs to take the next step? No. The result is what is currently on the ice - an underachieving team with no identity. There is no fire. There is no heart and soul player on this roster. We need him to step up or its time to ship him out. Five points and a -4 is unacceptable.

Can'tStoptheGrier said...

To Toronto: Patrick Marleau, Christian Ehrhoff, Steve Bernier and Dimitri Patzold

To San Jose: Darcy Tucker, Brian McCabe, Andrew Raycroft

McLaren's Right Hip said...

After spending the hours I was supposed to be working stewing over the Sharkies, here's what I think:

Ron Wilson, it coulda been so beautiful, but now you have to go. I know, cutting the coach is supposedly a "knee jerk" reaction, but as I have said before on this page, I just don't think the guys like him. Especially Patty. Rarely do you hear any of the players speak affectionately about RW like you hear from other players around the league about their coaches. Even JR, who has abandoned his trademarked forked tongue this year and replaced it with rainbows and gumdrops over his excitement about being on the team, has taken a couple passive-aggressive digs at old Ronnie. And last night's display from RW sealed the deal: no emotion, no scorn, no outrage whatsoever over the 2 Berier double minors and the waived off goal. Horrible!

In my opinion, the emotion needs to come from the guy wearing the C, but the fire needs to come from the Bench Boss. If he can't get the talent in that locker-room motivated, then he needs to hit the links. Let Dougie take over the bench for a bit while a replacement is found. Or, even better, let JR do it. He seems to be doing most of the coaching anyway.

And, for God sakes, please give Nabby the day off! He is good, but not good enough to handle this kind of load. Grier, you know all about handling loads, so you should be able to advise them.

Megalodon said...

You know what? You're right. I've been a Marleau supporter for years, but I'm tired of constantly having to defend him when he's not producing. Let's ship him off.

Great post.