Todd Bersnoozi wrote:True, Gillis has a better track record with some of his trade deadline deals. I think I admitted that already. But, Gillis and Nonis were in different positions. Gillis was dealing from a position of strength as his canuck teams were like top teams heading into the playoffs, whereas Nonis was in a weaker position, scratching and clawing trying to get in. As I mentioned as well, trade deadlines were a bit different then. There were alot more deals back then, thus draft picks were more easily acquired. Today, teams are more reluctant to give up picks, thus u can get a better player with picks now.
Those are good points. When Nonis was dealing from a position of strength so to speak he made better deals (Sopel and Smolinski). And I can agree that Nonis and Gillis operated under different trade deadlines. But that still doesn't excuse Nonis for acquiring players who turned out to be pure rentals. Gillis acquired players he managed to keep. I don't think Nonis even acquired one player at the deadline he managed to keep. And the different era argument didn't apply here. Take the 2006 trade deadline. Besides Nonis' acquisitions, every player acquired for a 3rd round pick or higher were not pure rentals.
Todd Bersnoozi wrote:Sometimes u gotta play the style that would give your team the greatest chance to win. If u were the GM of the Devils back in the late 90s and early 2000 and u had the likes of Marty Brodeur, Scott Steven, Holik, Daneyko and had Jacque Lemaire coaching your team, would u get your team to play an offensive run and gun system or a defensive trap system? I dunno about u, but I'd get them to play the trap and bring in players that could play and excel in that kind of system. I don't care if it's ugly/boring hockey, if it gets me wins and a cup, that is all I care about.
Well Nonis would tell you that the Canucks never played the trap and that they played a similar style to Detroit and if you think the Canucks played the trap you don't know anything about hockey. Seriously though, would you agree there was a marked change in the Canucks' style of play right after Gillis took over? And what were the players that Gillis added in the offseason and in the beginning of the season? You really think the likes of Bernier, Wellwood, Ryan Johnson, SOB, Hordichuk, Demitra, Davison while letting go of Morrison, Naslund, and Krajicek would make a difference to the team's style of play? No Gillis came on board and said that the Canucks would play an uptempo puck possession style of hockey and AV stayed on because he convinced Gillis that he can coach a more uptempo style of hockey. The team had the same coach and the difference in style is evident for all to see.
Todd Bersnoozi wrote:The system and style don't matter as much, as long as u get the results... So, Nonis has 1 good year and 1 bad year since going with a defensive system (50%). Not great, but I think not too bad all things considered.
Of course the system and style matters. It's all about organizational philosophy. The Red Wings and Devils were successful for years because they employed a similar system throughout the years even with coaching changes and they drafted and acquired players who were good fits for the system. To be successful, you got to figure out beforehand the style of hockey you want the team to play and stick with it. When the Devils beat Detroit and won their first Cup, you didn't see Detroit go to a trap system. Neither did the Avalanche. You adjust the system and playstyle to suit today's game, but the overarching philosophy is still there. That's why you see that even though Gillis has emphasized size recently, the bigger players were still guys who can play a puck possession game. As for Nonis, he actually had 2 bad years and one good year and didn't really have a philosophy on the type of playing style he wants the team to play or the culture he wants to have.
Todd Bersnoozi wrote:It's always easy to play armchair quarterback and blame the GM a few years after something happened. It's like saying Pat Quinn, why didn't u draft Jagr instead of Nedved? Or Mike Gilllis, why didn't u take Eric Karlson or Jordan Eberle instead of Cody Hodgson? Hindsight is 50/50 man. So you're saying u wouldn't have resigned Nasi? At the time, Nasi was still a pretty good player and he was the captain of your team. U need some offence from somebody. I think u have to try to keep your franchise player, fan favourite and all-time points leader. Some players can still play at a high lvl at at an old age (ie - Selanne, Jagr, St. Louis), some can't (ie - Linden, D.Weight) and unfortunately Naslund fell into the later category.
And Quinn might have had a job for a longer time had he drafted Jagr instead of Nedved and the Canucks might have won the Cup if they drafted Eberle instead of Hodgson. Hindsight is 20/20 but ultimately it's the GM's job to be right in hindsight. Not that it matters, but I would have re-signed Naslund if I was the GM at the time (I think most people would have), I would have drafted Kopitar (I think most people here would have) and I would have traded Jovanovski for futures knowing that I couldn't re-sign him. And if I still ended up fielding a team that missed the playoffs two out of three years and I had traded 2nd and 3rd round picks in the process, I would deserve blame just as Nonis deserves blame.
Todd Bersnoozi wrote:Yes, he brought in some dead wood. But he brought in some decent players too (some with much longer impact on the team than others). As already mentioned some great ones like Lou, Burr, Edler, Willie, Hansen. Some decent ones with shorter durations with the team: Carter, Krajick, Pyatt, Baumgartner. And he slowly worked in a couple young guys who he inherited and they have become impact players on the Canucks: Kesler and Bieksa.
And what results did it bring? Let's face it, Burrows was Heisinger 's find and Edler was Gradin's but I will credit Nonis for taking a chance on the two. The problem isn't that Nonis failed to bring in good players. It's that he failed to build a long-term contender. There is a reason why the team went no where under Nonis. Nonis' idea of building a team is to hand out one year contracts to reclamation projects. Gillis, on the other hand, is all about identifying the team's core players and getting them signed and surrounding them with quality players and wait for young players to come along. Nonis didn't do that. Nonis was all about rolling the dice on players like Anson Carter, Pyatt, Bullis, and Brunnstrom and when a player took that one year deal and proved to be a good fit (Anson Carter) Nonis lowballed him (according to Carter). The fact that you have to name Krajicek and Baumgartner as decent acquisitions shows how bad things were under Nonis.