There's a learning curve involved with becoming an effective NHL GM. For some, of course, that curve is steeper than it is for others.
For example, less than a year into the job,
Bowman identified his core players --
The fact that each player is under 25 was both a blessing and a curse. Bowman had to eliminate players who had yet to hit their primes, but it was considerably easier to find partners who were willing to take on these players' inflated contracts and offer up promising young talent and high picks in return.
Bowman's not done yet.
Bruins fans have to be hoping that
To his credit, Chiarelli has built a solid core of young talent in Boston. The problem is that the majority of these players are his guys...and that makes it considerably tougher to make the difficult choices. In an ideal world, Chiarelli would move veterans like
Chiarelli also wouldn't be opposed to shipping
Savard's standing within the room -- never that high to begin with -- took a serious hit in the wake of the too many men on the ice penalty that sealed Boston's Game 7 loss to Philadelphia in the second round of the playoffs. Instead of taking the blame he clearly earned with his indecisive play -- waving his stick to signal that he wanted to come off and then changing his mind, leaving the arriving
Chiarelli may yet be able to make a deal for Savard, but it's looking more likely that his cap mismanagement will cost the team a younger, more valuable asset, such as centers
After guiding the Windsor Spitfires to back-to-back Memorial Cup championships, it was only a matter of time before the NHL came calling for
What was surprising was how quickly he answered.
On Monday, Boughner stunned the junior hockey world when he accepted an assistant's role under new coach
You can't blame anyone for wanting to better their position, even a guy who, as part owner of the Spits, was basically calling his own shots in Windsor. But the timing, and the situation, are curious. By taking this job, Boughner walks away from a chance at an unprecedented third straight Cup, a very real possibility even for a team that's facing the certain loss of first overall pick
And while a spot in Columbus allows him to stay reasonably close to his interests in Windsor, it's hard to imagine how this offer was considered irresistible. If it had been an opportunity to apprentice under one of the best, say,
With Boughner's stock going nowhere but up, it seems likely that a more compelling offer, perhaps even a head coaching job, would have come his way next summer. But maybe this was exactly what he was looking for. A slower pace in a low-pressure situation working with a lot of young players. As he said on Monday, "It's a process. I want to make sure that if eventually one day I do get a head job, I'm going to be very well prepared."
All in all, an odd, unexpected choice, but one worth watching as the Blue Jackets strive to be a competitive club next season.
Lots of chatter about a potential NHL return for
It was reported on Zherdev's Russian team's web site that the Sabres and Maple Leafs were in contact with him, but Toronto denied it and it's hard to imagine that Buffalo coach