While not being mathematically eliminated yet, the San Jose Sharks are eliminated from the playoffs. Although with Calgary and LA winning tonight as well, Sharks might be eliminated. Math is hard and I’m too sad to look on NHL.com to see the standings. So with no playoffs to look forward to, I’m just going to focus my hockey energy on what I want to see in the offseason.
Let’s start with Doug Wilson and Todd McClellan must be fired. And for fun, just fire the whole coaching staff. 10 years in the playoffs and no cup to be found, so why oh why do these guys get to keep their jobs? TMac should be fired because whatever it is he’s doing, it’s not working. The system does not work. Not to mention the continued playing of guys like Scott, Brown (pre broken leg), Hannan, Burish (before he was banished to the Woo), and any other grit guys over guys like Kennedy and the rookies who need ice time. I’m tired of hearing guys being just “good in the room” and not actually good on the ice. (to be fair, all 3 of John Scott’s goals this season have been pretty entertaining and he seems like a genuinely nice dude who I’d like to drink a beer with, if only he was actually good at the hockey. But I digress) Doug Wilson should be fired for his many sins as GM last offseason:
1. Moving Burns to defense
2. Not trying to get Boyle to take a hometown discount and stay on the team
3. Re-signing Hannan and Brown
4. Not waiving or buying out Burish
5. Signing John Scott
6. Letting Ice Girls become a thing (although this is on Tortora and he must go as well)
7. Moving Burns to defense (this gets on here twice because it’s the worst thing he did)
8. Not signing a Top 4, or even Top 6, FA defenseman
9. Not doing something about Niemi
10. TAKING AWAY THORNTON’S CAPTAINCY
I could be forgetting things but there are so many it’s easy to do. So with all that the first thing I want to see this offseason is Burns moved back to his rightful place on Jumbo’s wing and be a forward again. Even without signing a FA defenseman, Tennyson is more than capable to take Burns’ place on the blueline. I don’t care that Burns was an all-star as a defender. All-Star Dmen only go by points not by actual skill on D. Burns is just as capable to get as many points, if not more, as a forward. And as a forward he wouldn’t turn the puck over as much because he’s rushing the net.
Second thing, sign a Top FA defenseman or trade for one. Defense is the biggest issue. It was last offseason and it still is. Vlasic is the only irreplaceable one and if he goes down we’re doomed. DOOMED! Every damn time. Beefing up the defense will help so much.
Third, DO NOT RE-SIGN NIEMI. I repeat: DO NOT RE-SIGN NIEMI. I don’t know for sure if Stalock is starter material. All signs point to no, but I like him so I’m in denial about this. My denial stems from the coaching staff never actually giving him a chance to prove himself. A lot of fans may disagree and say he has proved he’ll never start, but the sample size is even smaller this season and behind a lackluster defense, it doesn’t prove anything to me. Truth is, he probably isn’t a starter and will forever be a backup. And that’s OK too. He’s a good backup goalie and I do like him a lot. So with that, we need a starting goalie. This will probably have to be a trade if there isn’t a viable candidate in free agency.
Goldobin should start in the AHL. The saddest thing was rushing Mueller to the NHL (even with my high hopes for him) and never giving him enough ice time. So you don’t want to send him back to his juniors team. Fine. Then let him play. He won’t learn as much rotting away in the press box than he would on the ice. I’m hella hyped for Goldobin to play in the NHL, but not if he’s never going to play. Him, and Mueller for that matter, need to be playing. I’m not entirely sure if it’ll be the same for Goldy as Mueller and the Sharks might still rush him into the NHL. If that is the case, let him play not rot so face punchers with no talent can be on the ice to “deter dirty hits”
Next: no more Hannan. No more Brown. Trade them if you can, banish them to the AHL if you can’t. They should not be on the team and I’m tired of watching them suck. Hannan isn’t too bad if all the other options are injured but to regularly get ice time is baffling. He’s just not that talented. He’s another guy, I like him as a person not as a player. I do hope that puck to the face isn’t too bad of an injury. Just because I don’t want him on the team doesn’t mean I want him hurt in any way.
DO NOT BRING BACK JOHN SCOTT.
The draft will also be key. Would I like to see them trade up to get a top 3 pick? Yes. Will this happen? No. Especially if Doug Wilson somehow miraculously keeps his job. He’ll probably trade down just to spite all us fans who want him gone. If he does that I want Carey Price or Seguin and Demers or something like that (I know that would never happen).
So this is what I want to see. I may update later if I remember anything I may have forgotten. But this is where I stand.
Now I’ll just focus on watching baseball.
P.S. I will forever be irrationally upset and missing Demers in teal.