Your memory isn't as good as you think. Bowman became coach in 93-94. Prior to that we had only been good for 2 years. (Before that we were mostly a .500 team or worse.) This notion that we were some regular-season powerhouse that fell short in the playoffs before Scotty saved us is false. We got upset in the second round by a Chicago team that ended up going to the finals, then lost in 7 games in the first round to a Toronto that was pretty much just as good as we were. The first three seasons with Bowman were all bigger upsets than anything that happened prior.
Secondly; Konstantinov, McCarty, Lapointe, Pushor, and Ward were all acquired prior to Bowman. Draper came a couple weeks after, but Bowman didn't become co-GM until the next season. Ramsey wasn't part of our Cup teams. We also got rid of Ciccarelli, Drake, Burr, and Probert. It's not like Scotty came in, added "toughness", and then Cups happened. Bowman, as a coach, deserves plenty of credit for our Cups. The commitment to team defense won us the Cups, not any kind of grit.
As for the current team: Abby, Helm, Sheahan, Miller, Glendening, Andersson, and Ferraro. Maybe could include Jurco. Prospects Callahan, Bertuzzi, Nastasiuk, and I'd say AA and Larkin could be called gritty to some extent. Traded for Cole. Maybe lacking a bit on defense, but Quincey, Ericsson, and Smith aren't exactly soft (nor are Kronwall and Dekeyser for that matter).
The general talent level of our team has declined. That's why we aren't as good, not because we're too soft. If anything, we're much more gritty now than we were from '02-09.
What are you talking about? Prior to Bowman coming we were a PO team every year but won. Had won multiple Division crowns and made deep runs in the PO's. have you forgotten the back to back defeats to the oilers in the mid/late 80's in the CF's?
Ramsey was on our roster in 96/97, it was his last year. he was also on the 95 team that lost to the devils. But of course you know all of this. You are just refusing to fact reality. Bowman was the reason we became a Cup team. Period. The skill was there before him, but the Cups came with him. holland was handed a loaded team. Had a HOF coach running things. Talking about an easy job, he had it. Since Bowman and our stars have left we have gotten worse year after year. UFA's don't come anymore and Holland isn't making trades. So what happens in the future? I bet we miss the PO's soon. Could well be this year baring some major moves. That is on Holland and only Holland. now can he change the direction of the team? yes. Will he? Stay tuned......
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