Saturday, July 25, 2009

DP Stands for Disabled Person

I'm going to start the history of mistakes at a time not too long ago. Sure there were plenty before then, and there most certainly were some excluded, but those don't pertain to my particular yarn here.

Before 1995-96 season - Mike Milbury hired as head coach.

During the same 1995-96 season - Don Maloney fired by "team management," Milbury given total control as GM and coach.

2000 - Charles Wang co-purchases franchise, and would later take over complete ownership in 2004.

2000 Entry Draft - Milbury selects goaltender Rick DiPietro over Dany Heatley and Marian Gaborik.

May 2007 - Milbury resigns as GM. (Not a mistake, just a relevant event in this brief history.)

Summer 2007 - Wang hires Neil Smith as GM and then fires him a month later, before the season starts.

Still in the 2007 off-season - Wang somehow convinces back-up goaltender at the time, Garth Snow to accept position of GM. Snow retires from playing professional hockey to become GM.

STILL, in the off-season - Wang and Snow collaborate to offer DiPietro an unheard of, 15-year contract worth $67.5 million.

For half of the 2007-08 season, and pretty much all of 2008-09 - DiPietro strains his uterus, his left hip, his right hip, his left boob, and one of his knees, and sits out many, many games.

July 1, 2009 - Dwayne Roloson, goaltender, signed to a 2-year $5 million contract.

July 22, 2009 - Marty Biron, goaltender, signed to a one-year $1.4 million contract.

That's not even that long a history of idiocy, and I'm about spent from typing it all out.

Many hockey insiders are looking at that last item of history and calling it genious. I am not one of them. Maybe I am just too small minded to see the bigger picture, but this just reeks of yet another peculiar move by one of the red-headed stepchildren of the NHL.

Being a goaltender himself, maybe Snow just has a thing for other goaltenders that gets him so hot under all that sweaty manliness. Maybe its something similar to my 'Michael Jackson theory' as to why Snow surrounds himself with goaltenders, and for long periods of time. For those of you who don't know, my 'Michael Jackson theory' goes something like this... Michael Jackson touched little kids in some twisted attempt to regain that innocence of childhood that he lost when he became a star at the age of 5. The way it relates to Snow is that he signs number one goaltenders with reasonable success in the NHL, unlike his, and offers them ridiculous lucrative contracts, that he never got, in an attempt to give away the success for goaltenders that he never achieved as a player. Bit of a stretch? Most conspiracy theories are.

Bringing in Roloson made sense to an extent, in order to give Ricky some support, and maybe teach him a trick or two on the way out. Signing Biron, even for a year, says 'the goaltender we signed to a lifetime contract is still a little wobbly.'

Okay fine, let say best case scenario DiPietro comes back to action halfway through the season, what the hell do you do then, with three NHL goaltenders in the stable? 'Oh well, with the shrewd signing of Marty Biron to a cap friendly $1.4 for the remainder of the season, there will be plenty of teams looking for that a quality #2 for their goaltending tandem.'

So the rationalization is that, hypothetically, some team loses their goaltender to injury, say, for example, Martin Brodeur, then Lou is going to scramble to plug that hole with a goalie on the chopping block at mid-season? Didn't happen last year. Granted Mr. Lamoriello is one of the smarter GM's out there, but pulling the trigger for a goaltender in that position is not going to make a whole lot of sense for a lot of GM's out there.

In any case, the Isles are still at the cap floor, and spending money, any money on contracts at this point is a good idea, even though a smarter one would have been to add some defense, or get someone who can play with Tavares besides Okposo. And not re-signing someone that reminds us of Yashin.

But as far as Snow doing a 'heck-of-a-job', I'm not convinced. Picking Tavares was a no-brainer, and he's done virtually nothing since then, other than pick up one too many goalies. The one thing that's going to stick out in my mind that Snow did in his GM career, was sign a Rick-ety goaltender to a ridiculous contract.

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