Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: scouting
Pierre Gauthier met the media yesterday and his words on the captaincy were interesting. Gauthier acknowledged that a captain will be named before the season begins, and he seemed to praise, amongst others, Mike Cammalleri for his leadership last season. Gauthier also noted that the Canadiens had a better idea of their identity and, after last season’s playoff run, what they are able to accomplish. Personally, I wish people had probed more on the idea of change – after all, the Canadiens changed most of their scouting department, their assistant GM, their strength and conditioning coach, and due to Guy Boucher’s leaving much of the AHL organization changed as well. Gauthier did mention this and said it was normal when coaches leave for many different positions in that realm to shift.
But why all the scouting changes? Gauthier was Gainey assistant for many years – if all these changes needed to be made, why didn’t Gainey make them? If Gauthier is the camel, what was the straw? The Canadiens draft record has, for the past few years, been fairly strong: no super stars, but many solid NHLers. Why make such sweeping changes to amateur scouting when this is the case?
From Ken Warren at Canwest via the Vancouver Sun,
“Guys get fast-tracked because of free agency at 27. You need cheaper players. You’re going to see lots of players come right out of junior who are going to play on the big team.”
More and more, NHL teams appear to be building around a core of franchise-type players, signing them to multi-year contracts while filling in the rest of the roster however possible.
“You’re locking up five or six guys long-term, with big money, and your other guys are moving on,” Murray said. “That’s why we’ve increased the amount of people on our amateur scouting staff. Every team has over the years. Since the new [collective agreement between the NHL and the players’ association], you have to draft guys who can come up and play. You can’t have a draft where you get nobody. That kills your organization.”
From the Globe & Mail,
How did these teams end up on hockey’s biggest stage? In part, super scouting.
A well-used hockey saying goes like this: “Great players make great coaches.” That’s true.
The corollary: Great scouts make great general managers. (Ask Wings GM Ken Holland.) Take it a step further, and scouts make GMs look good by acquiring the right players either through the draft, trades or signings.
It’s not a secret: Scouting is the life blood of any successful hockey team.
more on the scouting backgrounds of the two finalists
Update 8:11am ET: Dan Rosen at NHL.com has more on team-building on the Pittsburgh side, going back to the Craig Patrick era.
From Dan Rosen at NHL.com,
If you search hard enough, you’ll still find Greg Malone’s name in the Pittsburgh Penguins media guide. He’s listed in Ryan Malone’s bio as the forward’s father, and in other places showing his season and career stats as a Penguins’ center from 1976-83.
But Greg Malone’s present value to these Penguins extends way beyond any miniscule mention in a media guide. Even though his job title now refers to him as a professional scout for the Phoenix Coyotes, Malone was one of the architects who put together the team that will represent the Eastern Conference in the 2008 Stanley Cup Final starting Saturday [...]
As the Penguins’ head scout from 1990-2006, Malone was at the forefront of every Penguins draft, meaning he had his hand in selecting 11 of the 20 players that should dress for Game 1 against the Detroit Red Wings Saturday at Joe Louis Arena.
From Paul Hunter at the Toronto Star, Tomas Kaberle is “living proof the Leafs actually know how to choose talented players” in the draft:
On a team with a history of dubious draft selections, it is Kaberle who stands out as one of the best; a rare home run for a team that usually goes down swinging. And the good news for Toronto fans is Kaberle arrived under Fletcher’s watch in 1996.
Selected 204th that spring, Kaberle blossomed into a front-line NHL defenceman in Toronto and became a player who excelled to the point that this will be his third all-star appearance.
more… on Kaberle, Cliff Fletcher, and the Leafs’ uneven history with draft selections
From Kevin Dupont at MSNBC,
All these years later, considering that the likes of Holmstrom, Datsyuk and Zetterberg make up arguably the NHL’s best line this season, a casual hockey fan (not you, of course, dear reader) might figure the Winged Wheels had first dibs each of those years when it came time to selecting the game’s future stars.
But it was hardly the case. In fact, the Red Wings selected Masseurs Holmstrom, Zetterberg and Datsyuk so late in those respective drafts, it is nearly an embarrassment to the world’s international scouting brotherhood.