Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/30/14 at 08:14 AM ET
from Dejan Kovacevic of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Well, that clock's ticking, to put it kindly. Because this poor soul, whoever it might be, will have basically a month to set the franchise's course for, oh, the next half-decade or so.
Consider this a checklist for Mr. Mythical New GM:
√ FIRE THE COACH
It's crazier now than then, but Dan Bylsma still holds the title. This, as well as the fate of the rest of Bylsma's staff, will have to come first. As in the very first morning on the job.
√ HIRE A COACH
The pool of retreads isn't deep, but maybe that's for the better. These Penguins need a tough coach. Not a cement-head but someone with a personality to handle this locker room, whether it's the unique needs of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin or the intimidating presences like Craig Adams. Bylsma couldn't. The new guy must.
Rick Tocchet, anyone?
I know he's interested, and we all know he's tough.
√ TRADE KRIS LETANG
I'm not kidding. Letang's limited no-trade clause kicks in July 1. After that, the Penguins will be hard-pressed to move his eight-year, $58 million contract, at least for fair value. I'll take Lemieux's word that the team “signed Kris to keep him,” but I'll also take his word that the new GM will make that call rather than the owners.
It's not just the trade return that would make a difference. The freed-up money would go a long way toward other concerns.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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