Gillis. Who is He?

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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:53 pm

dbr wrote:
Farhan Lalji wrote:Why trade Hodgson for a "work in progress".........when your team, in its current "window" is a cup contending team...........for a player that "might" pan out in 18-24 months?


Why indeed. Is it possible your perception of the Canucks "window" differs from Gillis'?



Possibly..........and if it is, then I'm not sure if we will be seeing a cup any time soon.

Take a look at the last 8-9 years and tell me what teams' windows really are.

Anaheim-New Jersey
Calgary-Tampa Bay
Edmonton-Carolina
Ottawa-Anaheim
Pitsburgh-Detroit
Detroit-Pitsburgh
Philadelphia-Chicago
Vancouver-Boston
New Jersey-LA

Outside of Pitsburgh/Detroit, how many teams have climbed back to the Stanley Cup finals shortly after appearing in it? Unless you consider 9 (NINE) years to be "within the window", then the answer to your question is the New Jersey Devils.......a team that has a completely different core from 2003.

Since we're talking about 2003, Let me quote Eminem's lyrics in "Lose yourself."

"You get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow, this opportunity comes once in a lifetime."
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby ESQ » Fri Jun 01, 2012 6:47 pm

Farhan Lalji wrote:Take a look at the last 8-9 years and tell me what teams' windows really are.

Anaheim-New Jersey
Calgary-Tampa Bay
Edmonton-Carolina
Ottawa-Anaheim
Pitsburgh-Detroit
Detroit-Pitsburgh
Philadelphia-Chicago
Vancouver-Boston
New Jersey-LA

Outside of Pitsburgh/Detroit, how many teams have climbed back to the Stanley Cup finals shortly after appearing in it? Unless you consider 9 (NINE) years to be "within the window", then the answer to your question is the New Jersey Devils.......a team that has a completely different core from 2003.


Going to the period right before you cut it off, there was Carolina, NJD, Colorado, Detroit that all returned to the finals in a span of 3-4 years. Carolina did it before the lockout, sucked and blew for a couple years then came back to win it in 06.

What is more important to note from your list is that other than Pitt-Detroit, no team went to the finals and made it out of the first round the following year.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Waffle » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:06 pm

Most years The Hockey News publishes a GM rankings list. And every year there follows a great debate about where GMs should be on the list, and why. But over the years, the question of who is a good GM usually boils down to playoff game numbers, winning percentage in those games, and most importantly, Stanley Cup wins. I can’t think of anyone off hand who is considered to be a great GM whose teams had a good regular season/play off game winning percentage but never won the Stanley Cup...Bobby Pulford comes to mind, though he was GM and coach I think, but who mentions him as a great GM?

To me it seems that while GMs may be lauded for what they do for their organizations, most do not remember them over the years, unless their teams have won a Stanley Cup. And if they have won a Stanley Cup once, well, they are considered great no matter what else happens to them subsequently, perhaps with good reason since a relatively small percentage of GMs actually ever win the Cup, and an even smaller number win it more than once.

Here is an interesting recent article that some may not have seen entitled, “Debunking the Proven Winner Myth in the NHL:”

http://www.iveybusinessjournal.com/topi ... key-league

The article is mainly about where the GMs that have been most successful winning the Stanley Cup have come from, and their SC winning timelines. Here is a part of interest:

“The average tenure of a GM with any one team is slightly more than five seasons. Selke took six years to win his first Cup and won a total of six while Lamoriello took eight years to win his first Cup and has won a total of three. On the other hand, Pollack and Holland won in their first seasons as GM. Pollack went on to win another eight cups and Holland has won another two. The implication seems to be that it takes more time for a GM who comes from outside the organization to do what it takes to build a Stanley Cup winner than it does for those developed within the organization.”

As others, particularly DL I think have pointed out, Mike Gillis is the best GM Vancouver has ever had related to strengthening the organization behind the team, and giving the team the best conditions in which to play and attract free agents. In the big picture, since he came from outside the organization, it certainly seems reasonable based on statistics alone (and I know some people don’t like stats) to give MG a few more years to try to win the Cup, based on the team’s performance so far, no matter what the reason.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Waffle » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:15 pm

Did someone mention Sam Pollock?

Sam Pollock is generally considered one of the best GMs ever in the NHL. In 1958, when he took over as the director of player personel in Montreal, there were players already on the team like Jean Beliveau, Rocket and Henri Richard, Doug Harvie, Jacques Plante, etc. and promising french canadian players in their farm system, which of course he had previously built.

He was the GM from 1963 (the first amateiur draft year) to1978, so he participated in 15 drafts. In those 15 drafts, he had something like 32 first round picks, five of them number one picks, and 21 of them #8 or higher. You can find a list of the players he drafted at Hockey Reference::
http://www.hockey-reference.com/teams/MTL/draft.html

Of his five number one picks, his only notable pick was in 1971. He is lauded for trading Ralph Backstrom to another team to strengthen them so that he got to pick number 1...he got Lafleur, the number two pick was some bag of pucks called Marcel Dionne. I believe in only one of his 15 years did he have any picks after the second round turn into good NHLers. He got players like Larry Robinson in the second round...if he was such a good judge of talent, how come he didn’t take him in the first round (he took two other players in the first round ahead of Robinson, Chuck Arnason and Murry Wilson)?

While he was supposed to be a great judge of player potential, his draft record says he was no better than many other GMs. His actual best attribute was the ability to talk other GMs into trading him high draft picks (like getting the number 1 in 1971) for aging borderline star players. Few GMs would be dumb enough to make those kinds of trades now (well, one can always hope for a Brian Burke special), and no one can expect Mike Gilles to be able to.

Also, have a look at the team Ken Holland took control of as GM in Detroit after already being with the team for 10 years. He took over a club with several future HOFers, including that Swedish defenceman who just retired. Other than being lucky with a couple of late round picks, his draft record is certainly comparable to what we have seen from MG so far as others have pointed out.

I note the above as the basis of my believing that MG has been no worse than Sam Pollock or Ken Holland in terms of drafting players so far, given Vancouver’s draft position, and he cannot be considered a bad GM on that basis.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:19 pm

ESQ wrote:
Farhan Lalji wrote:Take a look at the last 8-9 years and tell me what teams' windows really are.

Anaheim-New Jersey
Calgary-Tampa Bay
Edmonton-Carolina
Ottawa-Anaheim
Pitsburgh-Detroit
Detroit-Pitsburgh
Philadelphia-Chicago
Vancouver-Boston
New Jersey-LA

Outside of Pitsburgh/Detroit, how many teams have climbed back to the Stanley Cup finals shortly after appearing in it? Unless you consider 9 (NINE) years to be "within the window", then the answer to your question is the New Jersey Devils.......a team that has a completely different core from 2003.


Going to the period right before you cut it off, there was Carolina, NJD, Colorado, Detroit that all returned to the finals in a span of 3-4 years. Carolina did it before the lockout, sucked and blew for a couple years then came back to win it in 06.

What is more important to note from your list is that other than Pitt-Detroit, no team went to the finals and made it out of the first round the following year.


NJD, Detroit, and Colorado, pre-lockout, were excluded from my list because that period between 1995 and 2004 was a different era. In a cap era, parity is greater than ever. Cap restrictions prevents teams from building dynasties. Player movement to different cities is a lot greater now in the cap era.........meaning, that far more teams have a chance at attaining greatness in a given year. Look at how the Rangers and Kings improved so drastically within the past year.

Yes - Carolina did make the cup finals in 2002.............only to make the cup finals in 2006...........but that was still 4 years later. Given the age of our current core (i.e. Sedins', Burrows, Bieksa, etc.), do you really want to play up on the whole, "meh - we can get there again in 4 years" angle?
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby dbr » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:33 am

Farhan Lalji wrote:Possibly..........and if it is, then I'm not sure if we will be seeing a cup any time soon.

Take a look at the last 8-9 years and tell me what teams' windows really are.

Anaheim-New Jersey
Calgary-Tampa Bay
Edmonton-Carolina
Ottawa-Anaheim
Pitsburgh-Detroit
Detroit-Pitsburgh
Philadelphia-Chicago
Vancouver-Boston
New Jersey-LA

Outside of Pitsburgh/Detroit, how many teams have climbed back to the Stanley Cup finals shortly after appearing in it? Unless you consider 9 (NINE) years to be "within the window", then the answer to your question is the New Jersey Devils.......a team that has a completely different core from 2003.


By that logic, "the window" is already closed and the team should just dismantle their core and rebuild, if that's true who cares about an alleged step back from Hodgson to Kassian?
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:45 am

dbr wrote:By that logic, "the window" is already closed and the team should just dismantle their core and rebuild, if that's true who cares about an alleged step back from Hodgson to Kassian?


Although it's extremely difficult, it's not impossible to get back to the dance........provided that a team takes an aggressive stance and commits to it.

All I'm saying is that Gillis should have a more aggressive plan if he doesn't have one already. Either commit to bringing in another significant piece, or pieces, that can help us now...........or make a stronger commitment to stockpiling on promising prospects and kids. Just don't be in that "middle" ground where we're "kind of" a contender next year, and then "kind of" a contender for the 6 years after. Don't be like San Jose.

Either be damned serious for next year or the year after (think: What Anaheim did in 2006 summer by getting Pronger, or what Chicago did in Summer 2009 by getting Hossa), or be damned serious about building the next championship core (i.e. trading Luongo, Kesler, Tanev, and our 1st to Toronto for all of Gardiner, Connolly, Ashton, Schenn, and their 1st overall pick).

Middle ground gets you nowhere. Taking an aggressive stance and full commitment in one direction gets results.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby ESQ » Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:08 pm

Farhan Lalji wrote:
NJD, Detroit, and Colorado, pre-lockout, were excluded from my list because that period between 1995 and 2004 was a different era. In a cap era, parity is greater than ever. Cap restrictions prevents teams from building dynasties. Player movement to different cities is a lot greater now in the cap era.........meaning, that far more teams have a chance at attaining greatness in a given year. Look at how the Rangers and Kings improved so drastically within the past year.

Yes - Carolina did make the cup finals in 2002.............only to make the cup finals in 2006...........but that was still 4 years later. Given the age of our current core (i.e. Sedins', Burrows, Bieksa, etc.), do you really want to play up on the whole, "meh - we can get there again in 4 years" angle?

Fair enough, but you did include pre-cap Anaheim in your list. But no question the Cap has made it way more difficult to keep a great team together. I wonder if we'll ever see a spectacle like 08/09 again.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:21 pm

ESQ wrote:Fair enough, but you did include pre-cap Anaheim in your list. But no question the Cap has made it way more difficult to keep a great team together. I wonder if we'll ever see a spectacle like 08/09 again.


I think it's entirely possible to see a 08/09 repeat, but it will be extremely difficult. Not only does cap restrictions make it extremely challenging, but players are constantly getting bigger, faster, and stronger year in year out. The gap in the level of play between that of a 4th liner and 1st liner, or a 3rd pairing defenseman and 1st pairing defenseman continuously decreases with each passing year........allowing for greater parity.

So - even if a powerhouse team like the Boston Bruins or Vancouver Canucks retain all/most of its core from their 2011 Stanley Cup runs, they have to go up against teams that have had far more rest and recovery within a 12 month time span.........which makes it more difficult for them to get back to the dance.

Now I'm not saying that these were the reason why both Boston and Vancouver couldn't get past the 1st round this year, but 'fatigue' might have been a bigger factor this year than in any other year.

Bottom line is this: Getting back to the dance within a 1-2 year time span is possible, but in order for it to happen, teams need to continuously evolve by adding SIGNIFICANT pieces. In Vancouver's case, we need a forward that can take pressure off of the twins. We need a guy that can either complement Kesler really well on the 2nd line, or a guy that can dominate on the 3rd line by consistently scoring goals against opposing teams' 3rd/4th lines.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Topper » Sat Jun 02, 2012 12:26 pm

Farhan Lalji wrote:Possibly..........and if it is, then I'm not sure if we will be seeing a cup any time soon.

Take a look at the last 8-9 years and tell me what teams' windows really are.

Anaheim-New Jersey
Calgary-Tampa Bay
Edmonton-Carolina
Ottawa-Anaheim
Pitsburgh-Detroit
Detroit-Pitsburgh
Philadelphia-Chicago
Vancouver-Boston
New Jersey-LA

Now from that list, eliminate the teams that were reaching far over their head as the '82 and '94 Canucks did.

Boom goes Calgary, Edmonton, Carolina, the first Anaheim appearance and quite possibly the second Nj appearance.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Sat Jun 02, 2012 4:05 pm

Topper wrote:Now from that list, eliminate the teams that were reaching far over their head as the '82 and '94 Canucks did.

Boom goes Calgary, Edmonton, Carolina, the first Anaheim appearance and quite possibly the second Nj appearance.


Good point.

I guess from that perspective, it is possible for any team to 'get hot' and make an improbable run (which supports the notion that a franchise/organization should stay patient, while focusing on fielding a competitive team for both the short term and long term while not going too "extreme" in one direction.........whether it's trading away the farm for superstar players or vice versa).

My only problem with this is that teams that do "get hot" and make an improbable run, don't follow it back to back......or within a reasonably short time period. Instead - a completely different team in the following year (or years) could do that.

For example - Calgary 'got hot' in 2004 but never did it again. Ditto for the Oilers. Ditto for the Canucks in 94'.

Although anything is possible, my concern/line of thought is this:

If we're taking probabilities and past historical stats/trends into consideration, then the chances of the Canucks getting back to the Stanley Cup finals with this core is not good. Remember back in 2004 when the Canucks lost to the Calgary Flames in the first round? Compare the trade value's of Naslund, Morrison, Bertuzzi, and Jovanovski to what it was a few years later........when it became OBVIOUS that this core was headed nowhere.

With that in mind - I think the Canucks really need to either 'go for it' by bringing in a significant piece next year, or doing whatever it can to ensure that our future core down the road is stacked. Whether you go in one direction or the other, take an aggressive stance. Don't be "middle of the road" where you get one prospect here and there, or one "decent" top 6 forward or top 4 defenseman here and there in the coming years.

Either stack up with a shit load of promising prospects by selling high, or make the necessary investment/trade into getting another superstar player for the next 1-2 years. I believe that my going one of these two routes, it gives us our best chance of winning a cup............as opposed to being a perennial Western Conference bridesmaid like San Jose.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Island Nucklehead » Sat Jun 02, 2012 4:19 pm

Farhan Lalji wrote:With that in mind - I think the Canucks really need to either 'go for it' by bringing in a significant piece next year, or doing whatever it can to ensure that our future core down the road is stacked. Whether you go in one direction or the other, take an aggressive stance. Don't be "middle of the road" where you get one prospect here and there, or one "decent" top 6 forward or top 4 defenseman here and there in the coming years.

Either stack up with a shit load of promising prospects by selling high, or make the necessary investment/trade into getting another superstar player for the next 1-2 years.


The problem I have with this is "chance", Farhan. If Kesler and Hamhuis are healthy for the Finals, do the Canucks have a cup ring? Are we (the Gillis era Canucks) only different from a team like the Red Wings in that they won that final game?

If the answer is yes, then you almost have to continue the status quo with small modifications. Only the Canuck management knows the true extent of our fatigue and injuries this season, so all we can do is speculate. Maybe we were going into the playoffs with zero chance this season?

Gillis, imo, has the right plan. Make the team as competitive as you can for as long as you can. Open the window as wide as possible and let all the sunlight in you can, before darkness falls. Apart from that, you're pretty much left to chance. Kesler blowing a hip, Hamhuis destroying himself with a hip check, or Daniel taking a dirty shot... none are something that can be planned for, nor replaced when they occur. But the more chances you get with a good roster, the better your odds of actually succeeding.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Farhan Lalji » Sat Jun 02, 2012 4:46 pm

Island Nucklehead wrote:
Farhan Lalji wrote:With that in mind - I think the Canucks really need to either 'go for it' by bringing in a significant piece next year, or doing whatever it can to ensure that our future core down the road is stacked. Whether you go in one direction or the other, take an aggressive stance. Don't be "middle of the road" where you get one prospect here and there, or one "decent" top 6 forward or top 4 defenseman here and there in the coming years.

Either stack up with a shit load of promising prospects by selling high, or make the necessary investment/trade into getting another superstar player for the next 1-2 years.


The problem I have with this is "chance", Farhan. If Kesler and Hamhuis are healthy for the Finals, do the Canucks have a cup ring? Are we (the Gillis era Canucks) only different from a team like the Red Wings in that they won that final game?

If the answer is yes, then you almost have to continue the status quo with small modifications. Only the Canuck management knows the true extent of our fatigue and injuries this season, so all we can do is speculate. Maybe we were going into the playoffs with zero chance this season?

Gillis, imo, has the right plan. Make the team as competitive as you can for as long as you can. Open the window as wide as possible and let all the sunlight in you can, before darkness falls. Apart from that, you're pretty much left to chance. Kesler blowing a hip, Hamhuis destroying himself with a hip check, or Daniel taking a dirty shot... none are something that can be planned for, nor replaced when they occur. But the more chances you get with a good roster, the better your odds of actually succeeding.


All great points, and I can't argue with that.

Unlike Gillis, armchair GM's such as myself don't have to worry about things like 'budgets' and 'job security' and 'pressure', etc., and so I don't have to worry about being as conservative.

You are completely right though. I also like what Gillis is doing........and unfortunately, his approach is the best one to take.

As much as I liked Burke's "go for it" mentality, he puts us in a very dangerous spot by the time the end of the 2006 season hit. Had the Luongo deal not fallen into Nonis' lap, our franchise probably would have headed for a nose dive.......similar to that of the late 1990's.

I'm a bit biased in my thinking because I am impatient and I want to see the Canucks win the cup atleast once in my lifetime........and more importantly, not risk waiting another 16-17 years to get that chance.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby Tciso » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:59 pm

Farhan Lalji wrote:Middle ground gets you nowhere. Taking an aggressive stance and full commitment in one direction gets results.


That is a pile of crap. Almost every year, there is a dark horse team, somewhere between 5-8th seed that makes a terrific run. And, on occasion (e.g. this year) they win the Cup. Every GM knows that it is a crap shoot once the playoffs start, and the big thing is to consistently get there. Building a team that can consistently makes the playoffs and is in the top 4 in their conference more often than not is what gets results. And, that is exactly what GMMG is doing. Making a commitment in one direction (selling off the future for today, or buying albatross contracts) might increase your odds for one year, but overall, hits your chances severely. GMs want consistent results, and fan support, not boom/bust teams.

And, as a fan, I want consistent, good results too.
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Re: Gillis. Who is He?

Postby RoyalDude » Sun Jun 03, 2012 7:37 am

Tciso wrote:
Farhan Lalji wrote:Middle ground gets you nowhere. Taking an aggressive stance and full commitment in one direction gets results.


That is a pile of crap. Almost every year, there is a dark horse team, somewhere between 5-8th seed that makes a terrific run. And, on occasion (e.g. this year) they win the Cup. Every GM knows that it is a crap shoot once the playoffs start, and the big thing is to consistently get there. Building a team that can consistently makes the playoffs and is in the top 4 in their conference more often than not is what gets results. And, that is exactly what GMMG is doing. Making a commitment in one direction (selling off the future for today, or buying albatross contracts) might increase your odds for one year, but overall, hits your chances severely. GMs want consistent results, and fan support, not boom/bust teams.

And, as a fan, I want consistent, good results too.


Sounds like the San Jose Sharks, consistently good in the regular season, blow a tire in the playoffs every year. I guess if that's what you consider success well, have at 'er. I myself would like to win the Stanley Cup once and for all. We've been in the league for 42 years is it? No Stanley Cup? I'm getting fucking old, it's time to win the damn thing. Build a team built for the playoffs, with players who can stay healthy unlike ours, more depth at forward. I DON'T FUCKING CARE ABOUT THE PRESIDENTS TROPHY! And either do the L.A. Kings, Boston Bruins, New Jersey Devils. WooHoo, Yay, Where's the Presidents Trophy Parade?

I will give Gillis some credit, he has attempted to Manage from a win now mentality, he recognized the great window of opportunity handed to him on a silver platter by the group of players assembled by previous managements, unfortunately for Gillis TWO KEY WIN NOW TRADES went bust on him, Ballard and Booth. The biggest black eye that will go down in Canuck history for Gillis is the Ballard trade, wasting a big part of the Canucks futures on Ballard. Now he has handcuffed the team with $9 million in two contracts on two players who have not meshed with the core group of this team. I can throw in Demitra, Sundin as more failed attempts at winning now, the fire sale of draft picks for support players who have not managed to help the core group to win Lord Stanley, i.e Bernier, Pahlsson, Lappiere, Higgins. The List goes on. Gillis was supposed to bring us the Cup, he has failed and if any of you notice the chart, his team digressed in the playoffs quite considerably, from Stanley Cup Finals to First Round Oust-al. We now get to see what Gillis is truly made of, now that the core group is starting to show signs of getting stale, the Sedins are pushing 33, the 2 best players this franchise has ever seen and still no Stanley Cup? Serious changes need to be made, and if those changes fail, Gillis should be fired. Once the Sedins are gone, or are no longer dominant players, we are back to .500 hockey cause Gillis has depleted the farm of any sign of the next coming for the Sedins to hand the torch to. The 28th ranking in Organizational Depth by the reliable, hardworking staff at Hockeysfuture is the worst this storied franchise has seen since like forever. It's time to win now before the door closes on Lord Stanley, Gillis.
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