I'm going to address two of your points...
1. "I firmly believe Quenneville is the beneficiary of the skill on his team, and he doesn't bring much to the table".
Who's better, Toews, Kane, and Keith or Datsyuk, Zetterberg, and Lidstom? If you answer the latter, as I suspect you will, then your argument applies even more to Babcock then it does to Quenneville. Babcock's best teams were better than Quenneville's best teams, or Sutter's best teams. Yet they won more Cups with theirs.
Babcock's 2005 roster was WAY better than anything Quenneville has ever coached. It's better than anything ANY of those guys have ever coached. He had four 80+ point players. And he lost in the 1st round. So don't act like he's been given some hard road and the rest of these guys had a cake walk based on their rosters.
2. "But I'm not willing to say Quenneville is one of the best coaches in the league based on four solid postseasons and ignore the rest of his career".
The rest of his career where he had more wins and more playoff appearances than he had in Chicago?
Quenneville's got over 700 wins. He had as many wins in St. Louis as he does in Chicago in roughly the same amount of games. Chicago is not an anomaly. It's more of the same. True Chicago's where he won his cups, but that's true of Babs and Detroit too. He didn't win anything until he had Dats, Z, and Lids to work with. In fact, he missed the playoffs 50% of the time he wasn't with the Wings. That's right, Babs missed the playoffs with a team that went to the finals the year before...just like Sutter.
Cherry picking three players from a team of 20 players isn't an effective defense of saying one team is better than the other. It also doesn't discredit anything I've said. I think the Wings were the best team in the league in 2008 and 2009 skill-wise. I think since then, its been the Blackhawks. Both teams have experienced success in those periods, as expected they would given their makeup on paper.
Babcock's 2005 squad was a solid team and they underperformed when the got to the playoffs. The same way Quenneville's Chicago teams underperformed when they were eliminated in the first round two years in a row after winning a Cup, and the same way Quenneville's Blues underperformed earlier in his career. I would say its the same way Sutter's team is currently under-performing, but if the reigning Cup champs end up missing the playoffs altogether, I think that's taking it to a new level, and I certainly don't think that is something that would be on the resume of one of the best NHL coaches in the league. We'll have to see what happens on that one.
Also, forgive me if I don't jump up in disbelief of Quenneville's 700 wins. The guy has been coaching playoff caliber teams his whole career dating back to 1996-1997. That's almost 20 years of opportunity to work with. Also your comparison to his time with the Blues and Blackhawks ("He had as many wins in St. Louis as he does in Chicago in roughly the same amount of games") is flat out wrong. 307 wins with St. Louis in 593 games coached =/= 266 wins with Chicago in 454 games coached. That comes out to 51.7% wins vs 59% wins, which isn't a small margin. That amounts to an extra six games won per 82 games, or a 12 point gap in an 82 game season. So while they were both playoff-caliber teams, his time in St. Louis definitely isn't "more of the same". Its quantifiably worse. And the contrast between the two teams in the playoffs is even more apparent. 34 wins, 34 losses in seven playoff appearances with the Blues. 57 wins, 37 losses (and two aforementioned Cups) in six playoff appearances with the Hawks. Definitely not more of the same. But considering those Blues teams only made it past the second round once in seven seasons (eight if you include the year he was fired) it does further support the notion that Quenneville is unable to achieve any level of success with teams that aren't totally stacked and favored to win the Cup. In short, Quenneville's teams don't exceed expectations. They either meet their expectations, or they fall short.
And yes, Babcock has missed the playoffs 50% of his time not with the Wings (n=2, ie one time in his career). Its also worth mentioning the skill level of that squad was marginal at best. The year the Ducks went to the finals they went as a 7th seed, and unlike Sutter's Kings, the Ducks weren't a Cup favorite that for whatever reason barely squeaked into the playoffs. The Ducks went as team that higher seeds thought of as a stepping stone to get to the next round. Then they swept the defending Cup champion Red Wings team in the first round. Then they beat the top seed in the West, the Dallas Stars 4-2. Then they swept Minnesota in the Conference finals, before finally losing in seven games to New Jersey in the SCF. The next season (and after losing their top-scorer Kariya when he bolted for Colorado in the offseason) they played closer to their skill set and missed the playoffs. And just a side note: the Mighty Ducks team Babcock inherited ended the season in 13th place the year before he took them to the finals. But that's neither here nor there. The real beef I have isn't with how you perceive Babcock. Its how you perceive Quenneville and Sutter. Two guys who I think are somewhere between average and above average, but not cream of the crop.
edit: sorry for the wall of text, I'm on a study break and wanted it to last as long as possible lol
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