Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: dave nonis
"We're comfortable with the character of the group -with the group coming back and the players that we added. If we had questions about their character they would've been gone in the summer."
-Dave Nonis, GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs. More on the Leafs from TSN.
According to the Toronto Star's Mark Zwolinski, new Maple Leafs assistant GM Kyle Dubas is working very hard to learn the ropes in Toronto...
“It’s been a busy summer,” said the new assistant GM. “It’s been an interesting time to come in. In a way it worked out perfectly in that August is a quiet month in the NHL, and it let me get my feet under me. Get to know Brendan (Shanahan, the team president) and Dave (Nonis, the general manager).”
Dubas has spent the majority of his time this summer rounding out the Marlies staff, signing a few players, getting ready for training camp next month, finishing an ECHL agreement with Orlando as well as scouting Canada’s under-18 camp.
“It’s getting a sense of what everybody is doing,” said Dubas. “What each department is doing. Following the guidance of Dave and Brendan.”
And Dubas also has this to say about the "fancy stats" business:
“Hockey is behind other sports for a number of reasons, including the nature of the sport,” said Dubas. “There’s a lot of people that seem to me to be rushing the magic formula and how it all works. A lot of people are trying to sell that.
“The key for me is, if you rush, you’re going to be chasing down a rabbit hole, not really knowing what you’re looking for. We’ve got to determine how we’re going to go about that, how we’re going to develop it internally and not have to outsource that.”
To his credit, the Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons' weekly notebook includes exactly one mention of the "advanced stats" community, and it's one that voices a thought many of us have considered since Extraskater.com went "offline"...
When the analytics website @extraskater disappeared on Friday, my assumption was that creater Darryl Metcalf had been hired by an NHL team
(or the NHL itself, given that its new "terms of service" all but ban the kind of activity Extra Skater and Behind the Net engage in)
And Simmons issues a pretty dang solid set of NHL-related tidbits and observations:
Just over four minutes long, Dave Nonis talks about the Polak trade, the players who were drafted by the Leafs and how busy they may be in the UFA pool.
One really begets the other here, so bear with me:
Via Chris Nichols, Minnesota Wild GM Chuck Fletcher spoke with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune's Michael Russo about the free agent wining and dining period, which is clearly very good in terms of sensing the "fit" for players with various organizations, but isn't necessarily fascinating in terms of the way that it's driving players' "market values" into the stratosphere...
Cue Fletcher: “I’ve had the opportunity to speak with several agents of pending UFAs and try to get a sense of who may have interest in coming to Minnesota and talk about different roles and whether what we have to offer them fits from a role and an ice time standpoint with what they’re looking at. There’s been some ones that may work out, there’s been some ones that clearly won’t work out. But that’s good. I wasn’t really involved in the shopping period last year, but it’s been great. It gives you the sense where instead it used to be July 1 it was such a battle to sign guys. You were competing with other teams to sign players. It wasn’t like you were spending time interviewing players to get their idea of an ideal role. We weren’t having these conversations you might assume we were having. A lot of times you had to make quick decisions and you were throwing money around. So the great thing about the shopping period is you can say, hey this is what we have. This is the type of role. This is the type of fit. Does that interest you?”
And the lack of consensus as to who-goes-where from picks 1 to 4 to the utter mess of players who could be drafted anywhere from 5th to 40th means that we could see a flurry of trades to move up and/or down (and a first round that takes four or five hours starting tonight at 7), as NHL.com's Dan Rosen notes...
from Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun,
Q: Expect free agency to be pretty crazy this year?
Nonis: It is every year, I think there’s always that sprint the first 6-8 hours, and then after Day 1 it slows down a little bit. I think it will be the same. There’s some good players at free agency, there might be a few more added if there’s buyouts between now and then. It will be quick like it usually is, and then after that it’s a drawn out affair, with players trying to find their level in what their worth and teams looking for bargains at that point.
Q: Bolland. Are you still hopeful of re-signing him?
Nonis: Yeah, we’re hopeful. There’s work to do for sure. Dave is a quality guy and a good player and brings a lot of the things we want to keep with our team. There’s got to be a number that makes sense for both sides, and if there isn’t, then he can go to free agency. But we’re still in contact with Dave and our opinion of him hasn’t changed.
Q: What is this Leafs team? The team that took Boston to seven games in 2013 or the team that missed the playoffs this year?
Nonis: I think we collectively, fans, people with the team, you are too negative when things don’t go well and too positive when things do go well. I think our team is right in the mix with a number of other teams that could finish anywhere from four to 10. And that’s what we even said going into the year. We believed we had the makings of a playoff team but so did six other teams that were fighting for the same spot. We’re still a team trying to grow that needs to get deeper, we still need to get more experience. Our Marlies team is looking like they’re starting to give us some options with some players. All those things have to continue, we’re not anywhere near where we need to be. We’re happy with some of the strides we’ve taken, we’re moving in the right direction. But we have a lot of work to do.
Updated 2x at 9:19 PM: Paul did a helluva job of covering the "gist" of the GM's meetings, but here are some items that I noticed on Twitter and feel merit mentioning, starting with Craig Custance's chat with Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman...
In Penguins and Maple Leafs news, from Sportsnet's Chris Johnston...
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Tags: brooks+orpik, bryan+murray, buffalo+sabres, chicago+blackhawks, dale+tallon, dan+bylsma, dave+nonis, david+poile, florida+panthers, gerard+gallant, james+neal, jason+spezza, jim+rutherford, jonathan+toews, marc+crawford, matt+niskanen, nashville+predators, ottawa+senators, patrick+kane, pittsburgh+penguins, ron+wilson, shea+weber, stan+bowman, tim+murray, tom+renney, toronto+maple+leafs
The Toronto Sun's Mike Zeisberger posited a pair of speculation-based columns on Friday evening, wondering aloud whether Dan Bylsma might be a "fit" for the Canucks, and he also suggested that the Toronto Maple Leafs and several other teams have inquired as to the availability of San Jose Sharks forward Joe Thornton:
It should come as no surprise, then, that the Leafs are among at least six NHL teams who have kicked tires concerning Thornton’s availability.
And why wouldn’t they? With centre being a position of need for the Leafs ever since Mats Sundin left, why not make an inquiry if someone of Thornton’s ilk might possibly come on the market?
Leafs general manager Dave Nonis has often said that GMs often ask each other about the chances of players being on the block. As he has pointed out in the past, it’s part of a GM’s job to do his due diligence.
That doesn’t mean that it has gotten anywhere near the point of offers being exchanged. So, those of you who already have a Thornton deal worked out in which Dion Phaneuf goes to San Jose to replace the recently traded Dan Boyle, slow down.
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
The Tampa Bay Lightning made it clear to Ryan Callahan’s camp that they want the player past this season.
The pending UFA's agent, the veteran Steve Bartlett, told ESPN.com Tuesday that he chatted with Steve Yzerman in Buffalo over the past weekend, at which point the Bolts GM made it clear they'd like to talk extension after the season.
Yzerman, also reached Tuesday, said for now the focus is on hockey, on making the playoffs and on doing well in the playoffs. The GM will focus on Callahan’s future later.
"He’s just going to play hockey and we’ll talk when the season’s over," Yzerman told ESPN.com.
continued plus topics like John Tortorella, Andrei Markov, Jagr signing again with New Jersey and the future of Randy Carlyle and even more than that.
from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,
Toronto Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis, an executive known for working the phones and aggressively trying to improve his roster, explained to Hockey Central why this season has proved so difficult to acquire an impact player.
“Most [GMs] have tried to be active, but it’s really difficult to make a trade right now. A lot of teams are either in LTI [long-term injury situations] or they're against the cap.” ...
The other trade-hindering factor, according to Nonis, is Sochi.
“No one knows what’s going to happen coming out of the Olympics," Nonis says. "You'd like to think no one's going to get injured in Sochi, but that's not the case. There's going to people that come back that aren't ready to play."
Most deals available now involve fringe players, guys toiling the minors or ones who aren't regularly in the lineup.
The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch delivers a significant amount of player personnel, front office and team intrigue in his weekly rumor roundup, but I believe that we call the following "going to one's wheelhouse":
Dave Nonis is described as patient.
His is being put to the test big-time by the Toronto Maple Leafs. After falling out of a playoff position, league sources say the club’s GM has been working the phones hard trying to find some depth up front to help the struggling club.
To get assistance, Nonis will likely have to move a defenceman and since Dion Phaneuf just signed a seven-year, $49-million extension he isn’t going anywhere. The names of Carl Gunnarsson and Jake Gardiner could be trade bait.
At the very least, it’s all intruiging.
The second most-active GM to trying make a deal: Pittsburgh’s Ray Shero and he has been dangling prospects because of all the injuries the club has had. He is looking to move a young defenceman for a forward.
Damien Cox of the Toronto Sun did a Q & A with Leafs GM Dave Nonis,
Q: There’s been a transformation of this team over the last eight, nine years from a team with a large European influence to a team that is predominantly North American, and of that, predominantly Canadian. Does that fit your vision?
A: I wouldn’t say it’s a vision. I wouldn’t have any problem drafting a player from Europe in the first round.
Do I think you can be too heavy in European players? Yes. Do I think you can win championships with quality Europeans? Yes, no question. So it’s not one where we’re saying we’re going to be Team North America. Some of it’s by design, adding certain kinds of players who play a certain way that more often than not are going to be Canadian born, but it’s not a plan to eliminate Europeans from the Leaf roster.
Q: A lot of fans want to know if Dion Phaneuf and Phil Kessel are going to get new contracts and remain Leafs. Are they?
A: I would like both of them here. In this business you never know if you’re going to be able to secure people you thought you could. If we don’t sign those players in Toronto, it won’t be because they weren’t wanted.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
After creating a much-needed roster spot by sending Mike Brown to Edmonton for a conditional draft pick on Monday morning, Nonis hinted that he would continue to be patient heading into the April 3 trade deadline.
"I think from where we are right now as a team we're going to try to look long term with anything we do," he said. "I wouldn't say we wouldn't make a move to try to help our chances, but primarily our focus is on trying to improve our team for the long term."
That is the same practical approach Nonis has preached since replacing Brian Burke on Jan. 9.
However, with the Leafs currently among the top eight in the Eastern Conference, the pressure is bound to mount if they remain in the hunt at the end of March. After all, Toronto owns the NHL's longest playoff drought at eight-plus years -- a major black eye on an organization that currently has a mandate to restore some pride to the sweater.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
The decision to hire Carlyle might be the most important coaching decision made in Toronto since Cliff Fletcher hired Pat Burns in 1992. What he's managed with the Leafs, in concert with Nonis, over 17 games is nothing short of improbable.
Before this season began, after the lockout, Nonis met with the Leafs players and so did Carlyle. The meetings were separate but the tone was similar.
"We made it clear to players going in, that on any given evening, players who gave us the best chance to win, regardless of their contract, were going to play. This is something we agreed upon and have followed through on.
"It was important that every player knew this. It was a position we felt was important for us to take. We wanted transparency and accountability from everyone. If you say that and then you don't act on it, you'll lose the room. When we told them how it was going to be, I believe it's important that we stand true to our words. If they see the opposite, they won't believe in anything you say.
"And we've been true to our word on this."
from Pierre LeBrun of ESPN,
Toronto's goaltending issues last season were well-documented -- the Leafs were 29th in goals against -- and while Nonis professes to be a believer inJames Reimer and Ben Scrivens, it's clear the new GM has been doing his homework and is ready to act if a deal presented itself.
"We would upgrade our goaltending by the weekend if we could do it without taking away significant pieces," Nonis said. "It's not that we wouldn't upgrade. But for what's out there right now, we would set our team back, especially in the long term. And, we don't believe we have two goaltenders here that are not capable. We believe we have two capable goaltenders. Do we think they're NHL-caliber? The answer is yes, there's no question about that. The only question we have, and that people have, is the experience factor. And that's fair. You can't sit there and say we have two experience goaltenders because we don't. That's one area we would like to improve -- an experienced goalie that can play. At this point, there hasn't been a price reasonable enough for us to act on it."
The worst-kept secret in hockey is that Toronto and Vancouver have had an on-again, off-again dialogue regarding Roberto Luongo since June. And while Nonis was obviously careful not to name names nor teams in his comment above, clearly what he's saying is that unless/until the Canucks lower their asking price for Luongo, there won't be a trade.
more on the Leafs...
from the Toronto Maple Leafs,
Brian Burke, president and general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs, announced Saturday that David Nonis has been named senior vice president of hockey operations.
“David Nonis brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to our hockey staff,” said Burke. “We have successfully worked together in the past, and he has a deep understanding of contractual, legal and financial matters as well as scouting and roster management. He’ll be an asset to our organization in several areas.”
The Anaheim Ducks draft table is expected to have a new face among the group on Friday.
Former Canucks general manager Dave Nonis and Ducks general manager Brian Burke are working on the final details to add Nonis as a senior advisor.
It’s believed Nonis, who worked with Burke in Vancouver, will have the freedom to leave his position in Anaheim abruptly if a more attractive offer from another team comes along.
more coming at TSN…
From Jeremy Rutherford at Morning Skate at STLtoday.com,
On Wednesday, John Davidson acknowledged that the Blues are talking to Dave Nonis about joining the team’s management staff. This seemed a bit odd since Nonis, recently fired as the general manager of the Vancouver Canucks, is looking to resurface as a GM and has been linked to the vacancy in Toronto.Is Larry Pleau going somewhere? The answer is “No” and “Yes.”
Pleau, who’s been in the Blues’ GM chair for 10 years, will enter the final month of his contract in June. While it might seem that the Blues are about to relinquish Pleau of his duties or re-assign him within the organization to make room for a guy like Nonis, that is not the case. At least not yet.
Davidson says the Blues need another set of eyes in the sky.
From Tim Wharnsby at the Globe & Mail,
Nonis was expected to have dinner last night with Toronto lawyer Gordon Kirke, who is part of the Leafs’ search committee. Nonis is to then meet today with Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment president Richard Peddie.
The Leafs aren’t the only team interested Nonis, as he continues to be wooed by the Atlanta Thrashers and an unidentified third NHL team that still has a general manager in place.
The third team is believed to be the St. Louis Blues. St. Louis president John Davidson could not be reached for comment last night.
Update 9:23pm ET: More from Wharnsby, later in the day,
The meeting between the Toronto Maple Leafs and prospective general manager candidate David Nonis was described more as a session of getting acquainted rather than a formal interview.
From Ed Willes at The Province,
As anyone who’s seen an Oliver Stone movie can tell you, it’s now clear that Wednesday’s TSN report was the first act in a sequence of events which will inevitably lead to Brian Burke and Dave Nonis reuniting in Toronto to run the Maple Leafs.
I mean, who would argue differently? The crack management team at Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment has long since targeted Burke as the man who would be king of their empire. Nonis, his close confederate and former first lieutenant with the Vancouver Canucks, has recently been made available amid an equally interesting set of circumstances.
Put it all together and the inescapable conclusion is Nonis has been approached to serve as a caretaker GM in Toronto while Burke completes the last year of his contract with the Anaheim Ducks. The two allies will then resume their working relationship in the Big Smoke in 2009-10 with Burke running the show and Nonis serving as his No. 2 and that will wrap up everything in a nice, neat package.
continued… and as Willes goes on to note, there’s some problems with this theory.
Update 3:44pm ET: Jim Kelly at Sports Illustrated doesn’t think the idea is as crazy as it seems.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have fired coach Paul Maurice and sources tell TSN that the team has approached the Vancouver Canucks asking for permission to speak with recently fired GM Dave Nonis.
Nonis would be brought in to handle the Leafs’ managing duties through next season, with speculation suggesting the Maple Leafs would then approach Brian Burke at the conclusion of the season, with designs on Burke overseeing the entire hockey operation with Nonis continuing to occupy a management role as well.
from the Vancouver Province,
What the Vancouver Canucks tried to do this offseason was stand still.
Because he had virtually no other choice, GM Dave Nonis essentially did nothing in the offseason—at least nothing that could possibly have had any significant impact on the existing roster.
With $38 million of last year’s payroll already committed to this season and needing to sign 10 players to fill out the roster, he was left shopping the bargain basement for free agents like Byron Ritchie and Brad Isbister and making trades that involved such luminaries as Jason King and Ryan Shannon.