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Pointing At Dale Tallon

from Barry Rozner of the Chicago Daily Herald,

Dale Tallon should get all the credit for finding and drafting the talent that brought a Cup to Chicago, and for that we should be grateful.

But the dismantling of the team also is on the shoulders of Tallon, who was incapable of looking into the future and seeing what he was doing to the payroll, when it was so painfully obvious to the rest of the league.

And only those slurping Kool-Aid by the tanker-full during the Tallon era didn’t see the incompetence, unwilling to admit there was no plan in place.

That’s right. There was no plan in place, a staggering failure to properly manage a team, and the consequence of overspending was a difficult summer of watching so many players sent away or set free.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, Florida Panthers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: dale+tallon


Primis's avatar

Do we really need to do this?  Does nobody out there have any perspective any more?

July 19th, 2009 - Dale Tallon Fired.
Sept. 25th, 2009 - Claimed Radek Smolenak off waivers from TB.
Oct. 18th, 2009 - Claimed Andrew Ebbet off waivers from ANA.
Dec. 3rd, 2009 - Signed Duncan Keith to 13-year contract, and Patrick Kane and Jonathon Toews to 5-year contracts.
Feb. 12th, 2010 - Traded D Cam Barker to Minnesota for D Kim Johnsson and D Nick Leddy.
Feb. 17th, 2010 - Signed D Jassen Cullimore and assigned him to Rockford (AHL).
March 1st, 2010 - Acquired G Hannu Toivonen and D Danny Richmond from St. Louis for G Joe Fallon and assigned both players to Rockford (AHL).
March 2nd, 2010 - Acquired D Nick Boynton from Anaheim for future considerations and assigned him to Rockford (AHL).

And then of course the subsequent dismantling.

Show me ANYWHERE in there where the Hawks, in the span of nearly 11 months, tried to do ANYTHING to alleviate their cap situation.  Instead, they just made a bunch of moves to add minor leaguers and did nothing to change their upcomign cap crisis that everyone saw coming for a full year.

I think what Hawk fans are missing (amongst other things) is the perspective that if it was soooo bad that they fired Tallon on July 19th, 2009… why did they then wait until June 30th, 2010 to try to change something and fix it the cap situation?

Because the filthy, dirty truth is that it’s actually what the Hawks brass wanted.  They sat on their hands for nearly a full calendar year knowing exactly what their cap situation was going to be, and they did NOTHING about it.  It’s very likely that those bad contracts to Campbell and Huet were actually not even Tallon’s “babies” to begin with, which is why those left in the front office have been in no hurry whatsoever to fix or remedy them.

The Hawks’ front office (not Tallon) gambled, and continued to make the very same gamble in fact after his dismissal… and now they have had to pay the price.

Posted by Primis on 08/28/10 at 10:47 PM ET

Nathan's avatar

Agree with Primis, but would add… what were the Hawks (regardless of GM) supposed to do? This is what happens in the “new” NHL when you’re bad for an extended period—you stockpile young talent, and eventually it (hopefully) blossoms and you succeed. But then you have to pay it.

Best case scenario they could’ve not signed Huet, Campbell, and Hossa. At which point, the team would’ve looked a lot more like the Pens or Caps of last season instead of the team that won a Cup.

People make fun of the Wings, but bottom line is the only reason they’ve even been able to have the depth they’ve had for an extended period of time is not because Ken Holland is a genius, but because they are not afraid to work with veterans that nobody else wants.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 08/29/10 at 12:16 AM ET

OlderThanChelios's avatar

There was no plan in place. ...

Rozner misses the point entirely. There absolutely was a plan in place. The plan was to take a “home-run swing” at winning the Cup. Bingo. Bango. They did that.

Now they’re simply suffering the consequences of taking that home-run swing. In effect, they mortgaged their future for a one-shot attempt at resotring their past “glory.” Now they have to figure out how to move forward with a team that consists of their remaining “home-run” signings plus a bunch of “nobodies.”

If they pull it off this year, Talon and his crew will be hailed as one of the great management teams in all of hockey. If they don’t, they’ll be labeled for exactly what they are – a bunch of guys who gambled their club’s future for one shot at hockey glory.

I’m gonna bet that the latter proves to be true. And that just makes me all warm and fuzzy inside. smile

Posted by OlderThanChelios from Grand Rapids, MI on 08/29/10 at 01:27 AM ET

SYF's avatar

There was no plan in place…

Yeah, sure, Barry.  Your artificial indignation is also a whole friggin’ year late.

Posted by SYF from impossible and oddly communally possessive sluts on 08/29/10 at 02:14 AM ET

Moq's avatar

Now they’re simply suffering the consequences of taking that home-run swing. In effect, they mortgaged their future for a one-shot attempt at resotring their past “glory.”

Most teams, especially those long removed from past successes, would gladly go “all in” for a chance at the Cup even if it meant a few years of suboptimal financial conditions. Calling the Chicago gamble for mortgaging their future is verging on hyperbole in my opinion.

I’m gonna bet that the latter proves to be true.

That looks like a really poor bet. Unless there are external circumstances in the shape of a new CBA that alters Chicago’s financial wiggle room further, or they fail at another shortcut to success, I see no gambling of their club’s future. Proper decision-making can take you from failure to success in a short timespan.

Posted by Moq from Denmark on 08/29/10 at 08:34 AM ET

Primis's avatar

Rozner misses the point entirely. There absolutely was a plan in place. The plan was to take a “home-run swing” at winning the Cup. Bingo. Bango. They did that.

Posted by OlderThanChelios on 08/29/10 at 12:27 AM ET

This was the point I was trying to make.

Even after ditching Tallon, they stayed the course.  What that means is that it was not Tallon’s plan at all, but was the plan of those still there.  Otherwise after removing Tallon, they simply would have then tried to correct some of the problems INstead, the only salary move they made was trading Barker, who fans had been clamoring for them to trade regardles of the cap situation..

So I’m sick of the blaming going on with Tallon.  What this past year proved was that Tallon really had nothing to do with the moves.  Instead, it was Wirtz, and probably the Bowmans pulling the strings all along.

Posted by Primis on 08/29/10 at 01:52 PM ET

NHLJeff's avatar

What are everyone’s thoughts on the new CBA possibly including the ability for teams to try to restructure contracts with players?  At first, that seems like an absolute no for the players, but the plus side for them would be that guys like Huet or Nylander (or maybe Campbell at some point) could maybe make himself affordable instead of being pushed to Europe or the minors. I guess the bottom line in answering the question of whether the players prefer to play in the best league in the world or to get all of their money. Yes, the teams shouldn’t enter into these contracts in the first place, but they did, and the players can’t say no to the $$$...

Posted by NHLJeff from Pens fan in Denver on 08/30/10 at 08:05 AM ET

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