Holland has consistently refused to trade highly touted prospects and high draft picks. He's repeated his mantra of "building from within" soooo often that I've wanted to punch him. Presumably he has this point of view because he believes it's the right way to build and team. And what do you know, it's paying off. Not really sure how you can be critical of him right now? And if the roster management (and it's current successes) aren't attributable to Holland, who does get the credit? Luck? Babcock? Dan Cleary?
Did you miss the part where I said "I'll give all the credit in the world to Holland and his team for great drafting and development"?
But yes, I would say that our current success on many levels boils down to luck, though by my definition, on many levels, you make your own luck. We help our chances of getting lucky by having good drafting and more importantly, good development. But if we're being reasonable, we have to admit that the kids are playing a lot better than what could reasonably have been expected of them. It wasn't expected that they'd be this good, not just by outsiders, but even internally in many cases. Hence, why Holland has tried so hard for some time now to change the look of this team in the off-season.
Again, my point is that if Holland had accomplished some of the things he's set out to do the last few years, this team would not look like they do right now. This team is not part of Holland's master plan. When Holland has been successful at accomplishing more to directly shape the look of this team lately, it has not gone well at all. I'm not trying to s*** on him, and again, all credit in the world to he and his team when it comes to drafting and development, but I'm not about to start praising him after five years of his continually dropping the ball in free agency.
If anyone's truly lucky, it's him. Had these kids not turned out as well as they seem to be, which was absolutely a very real possibility, this team would be in a lot of trouble. And to be fair, even our current luck with the kids is a tenuous situation; we've seen guys start out great and disappear before.
If the team flounders again in the playoffs and some of our kids don't get off to such a great start next year, will you still be so peachy on the whole situation? I don't think so. I'm not saying I want that or even think it's going to happen, and if you've followed any of my posts this year, you'd know I'm pretty high on this team right now and optimistic about the future. But I've been around long enough to know that when it comes to young players, a lot can change in a short time.
Ken Holland traded a first-round pick for Kyle Quincey.
Ken Holland threw crazy money at Zach Parise and Ryan Suter. Had we signed them, "5+ years from now" wouldn't have been a thing anymore. We would've spent the remainder of those enormous contracts living year-to-year, selling off young, homegrown assets when they became too expensive to hold on to. (Not necessarily saying it wouldn't have been worth it. Just saying.)
Ken Holland traded one of our better prospects and a second-round pick for a rental so that we could limp into the playoffs and keep The Streak alive.
Ken Holland courted Stephane Robidas, who was injured at the time and, as he's failed to establish himself as a regular on the Maple Leafs' blue line, is pretty clearly washed up.
Ken Holland has pursued Rick Nash, Alex Edler, Jarome Iginla, and probably every other big name under the sun. Eventually, we're going to land one of those big names. Because, at some point, you have to. We added Rafalski in the summer of '07 and Stuart in February of '08. The Kings added Williams and Richards and Carter, and then Gaborik. The Blackhawks added Sharp and Oduya and Hossa.
That's half the reason why you stockpile assets in the first place - so that you can trade them. You don't wait to see how each and every one of your promising prospects pans out. If you have your seven D slots filled, and you've got as many as five really good D prospects in the pipeline, and you're a Keith Yandle away from being a Cup favorite, and Keith Yandle is - for the first time ever - known to be available, and you have three more years left with Datsyuk...do you really say, "Well, we have to think about 5+ years from now"? I mean, sure, of course the future's a consideration. But, um, I'm personally not willing to wait 3-to-5 years to see if one of our prospects (at least two of whom inevitably won't be Red Wings, if only because we're not going to have enough room) becomes as good and valuable as Yandle is right now. Our blue line doesn't move the puck well enough and doesn't produce enough offense. Smith isn't producing. Ouellet doesn't have Yandle's offensive upside. Marchenko is a shutdown defenseman. Sproul is a couple years away from being a regular, never mind an impact player. You're telling me we can't afford to part with any of these players, even if we're getting a top-pairing defenseman who can score 50 points for the scoring-challenged Coyotes?
We need a Rafalski, and we need him while Datsyuk and Zetterberg are still dominant players. We're going to have to give to get him. If we're going to wait to see if one of our prospects becomes a Rafalski, we're taking a bigger risk than the one we'd be taking if we acquired that player. Because, we don't know where we're going to be 5+ years from now (though, we do know Datsyuk will be gone and Zetterberg will be a shell of the player we have today). I'm not saying we should trade one of our untouchables. I'm assuming we can add a Yandle without having to part with one of our crown jewels. Which is one of the perks of having a ton of assets. You can afford to part with a couple pieces. Pulkkinen isn't a key roster player for us right now, nor is Jurco, nor is Smith, nor is Ouellet, nor is Marchenko, nor is Sproul, nor is the pimple-faced 18-year-old we'd draft with our mid-to-late first-round pick. Remove two or three of these pieces and we're still a contender, and our future is still extremely bright, especially with a top-end defenseman being added to the fold.
We're contenders. Datsyuk and Zetterberg and Kronwall and Nyquist and Tatar and Sheahan and DeKeyser have all avoided major injury this season. The Eastern Conference crown has never been so up-for-grabs. We should make a push. Why say, "Well, it's great that we're contenders, but what about 5+ years from now?" Well...maybe we're contenders 5+ years from now. But...we're contenders...right now...? I'm not talking about selling the farm. I'm talking about moving a D prospect plus Pulkkinen/Jurco. If that's completely out of the question, then we're never going to make a meaningful trade and this team is never going to reach its full potential. We draft and develop well, but not well enough that we can say, "Y'know what, let's try to win with an entirely homegrown roster." Why would we make that a thing? Even if it's possible, it's certainly not realistic. Every Cup-winning team that has ever been has needed some outside help.
I don't necessarily agree with the idea of trading certain people, but I am always amused by how easily people forget what Holland has tried to do again and again over the last several years. When he fails to do what he is attempting to do, we ended up signing a lot of s***. Then when the s*** breaks down, our prospects get called up and prove themselves.
Suddenly Holland is a genius who knew what he had in Grand Rapids and that's why he stood pat.
If Holland had accomplished some of the things he's tried to accomplish over the last few years in free agency, this team would look very different. Based on what he did accomplish in free agency, it's reasonable to say we're probably lucky Holland struck out more often than not. The kids are legit, and I'll give all the credit in the world to Holland and his team for great drafting and development. But Holland tried hard to do something that would give this team a very, very different look than they have now. Maybe it would've worked out, and maybe not, but it is absurd to suggest that this was the plan all along and Holland knew what he was doing.
Wait, you mean our rookie, third string, goalie had a bad game against the best offensive team in the league? What a bum!
In all seriousness, I'm glad to hear it. Obviously, looking at the score it seemed like one of those games where we just looked retarded for 60 minutes. If the team played well, and Peter was just off, oh well. Obviously I'd like to see them win, but over the course of an 82 games season you're going to lose some games. If that's the case, I'd rather they lose because one guy has a bad game than because 20 guys did.
Mind-blowing to me how people could get worked up about this team based on a game when your AHL goalie has a meltdown night and plays terrible. Also mind-blowing how much flack Mrazek is getting for it. This is what I hate about call ups, especially extended ones. There's the upside of them getting some real experience, but it has a tendency of coloring people's perceptions of a player unfairly. I still expect Mrazek to be with the Wings full time next season and to come out of camp in a backup role looking great.
And I'm most certainly not scared of literally any team in this league because of a silly game like this.
You are absolutely correct. That was actually the reason the Wings had to play out the string with Sammy's contract. He was still considered injured during the buyout window.
It's sounding more & more though that Franzen's career could very well be cut short by concussion symptoms. If that's the case, the Wings will get cap relief with the sole exception that they'll need to be at or below the cap with Franzen's salary included for one day at the start of each season which is what Philly & Boston have to do with the Pronger & Savard situations. Well, that is until the trolls in NHL HQ decide to change that rule too eventually.
Has anything from actual sources suggested his career could be cut short or is it just speculation from fans? I haven't followed this closely, but I also haven't heard anything remotely official about this, and I would've thought that'd be a little bit bigger news around here if true.