Don Cherry

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Kant Think, Mar 14, 2011.

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  1. Kant Think

    Kant Think Chaotic Neutral

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    How would you rate the Coaching skills of Don Cherry?

    What I heard about the man is that he was a really poor coach, the reason why the Bruins (Arguably one of the top 3-5 teams on paper all-time) were not a dynasty. In my opinion, they should have won a minimum of 4 cups (MINIMUM) in the Orr's years.

    Of course, many Boston's fans will argus that he has the best winning percentage all-time for coachs (or is it second best?) but then again, he only coached the Bruins powerhouse and he was never offered another job in the NHL afterwards.

    So, would you say he was brutal (My oppinion) average, good or great?

    Also, just for fun, to whom would you compare him in today's NHL?
     
  2. Dennis Bonvie

    Dennis Bonvie Registered User

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    Cherry only had Orr and Espo for 1 full season. Without them, he coached the Bruins to 2 Cup finals against the dynasty Canadiens and then the 7 game classic with Montreal in the semi-finals. He coached Colorado for a year (a last place finish) and then retired from coaching to become an entertainer/celebrity/legend.

    Compare him to somebody today? There is no one like Don Cherry.
     
  3. Kant Think

    Kant Think Chaotic Neutral

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    Wow, it seems I was wrong in many aspects here.

    In what year did he coached Colorado?
     
  4. Axxellien

    Axxellien Registered User

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    Don Cherry:

    ..Had indeed inherited a legendary team past it`s prime & refitted it with the results We know...His best line was ``Sure I coached Bobby Orr. I opened & closed the bench door for Him``..lol
     
  5. TheMoreYouKnow

    TheMoreYouKnow Registered User

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    The key players for most of Cherry's tenure with the Bruins were guys like Ratelle, Middleton, Park, McNab, O'Reilly and an ancient Bucyk. Very good team but if you look at the Habs of that time you can kinda see why Boston didn't win another Cup.
     
  6. theguru

    theguru Registered User

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    the word is in colorado with a bad team he was not a good fit. just a raw-raw type coach who could not get much out of a team with little talent.

    i still adore the man though.
     
  7. Darrelle Lundqvist

    Darrelle Lundqvist Swagelin

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    Theres no doubt that he had talent on his Boston teams, but it always seemed to me that Cherry always got the most out of his players.
     
  8. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Maybe so, but let's blame the actual Bruins for that. Phil Esposito said in his book they'd have been able to win more Cups without the heavy partying they did.

    Cherry got the Bruins in 1974-'75 the year after they made the final. It is by no fault of his own that the Bruins didn't win the Cup. No one was beating Montreal back then and only Boston managed to come within a whisker of doing so. No one else came close from 1976-'79. So you have to give the man credit.

    The Bruins have never had a coach nearly as good as Cherry since then. Orr has stated on several occasions that the players wanted to play for Don. He employed a rugged style of game and while he let Orr do whatever he wanted on the ice he knew nobody else had that luxury. Even back then he was known for "wrapping the puck off the glass" to get it out of the zone.
     
  9. Hasbro

    Hasbro Can He Skate?! Sponsor

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    The fans loved him and his firing was met with acrimony. No one could get anything out of that roster.
     
  10. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    Bingo.

    I'm reading Steve Simmons' old book Lanny this weekend and he (McDonald) makes it pretty clear that Cherry wasn't that great on the technical side but was a great motivator. Cherry was a players coach who lost a power struggle with that giant of GMs Ray Miron.

    McDonald makes the interesting point that the Rocky owners fired Cherry without having any idea of what he did for hockey in Denver.

    Maybe Cherry was one of the roadblocks keeping the owners from moving the team to New Jersey.
     
  11. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    Should have gone to the Leafs before the Imlach purge. Given the makeup of that team, he would have been the perfect coach in 79-80. Apparantly he was all but signed, sealed and delivered but it fell through at the last minute.
     
  12. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    I think Cherry says in his book Grapes that he had already made a commitment (verbal? Signed?) to the Rockies before receiving an offer from the Leafs. It sounded like his heart was definitely with the Leafs job.

    I have to hand it to him - he made a commitment to the worst team in the league and he stood by it. That's integrity.

    Or the threat of a lawsuit.

    Either way, he wound up in Denver and things went from there.
     
  13. Morris Wanchuk

    Morris Wanchuk .......

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  14. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    I remember recently hearing an old interview between him and Dick Beddoes and it appeared the Leafs really had the inside track. I guess Imlach and Ballard were slow on actually getting the offer to Cherry, because Cherry really seemed enthused with the possibility of going to TO and appeared to be expecting an offer. Beddoes, a good friend of Ballard and a guy who really knew the inner workings of the Leafs in those days thought Cherry was going to be named coach of the Leafs within a short period of time. Really too bad in the grand scheme of things because soon after the Leafs were torn appart and Cherry obviously wasn't the right guy for the Rockies job. I really think Cherry could have been the glue that held that Leafs team together which IMO was only a few pieces away from being a legit contender. Really the type of coach that team needed at the time.
     
  15. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    I wonder. From what I've read of Punch Imlach's later stay with the Leafs (About the time of the Lanny McDonald trade) there may have been some problems between Cherry and Imlach. They both seem to be the type who run their own show and Imlach seemed to choose his coaches accordingly.

    But you're right - it probably would have been better than what developed (And didn't develop) in Denver.
     
  16. jkrx

    jkrx Registered User

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    His blatant rascism would've got him fired sooner or later.
     
  17. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    I don't know. If he had to stick to coaching, maybe he would have actuLly toned it down. With his media job, he's definitely encouraged to be as big a buffoon as possible for 'entertainment.'
     
  18. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    And if he had coached in Toronto he would have been drowned out by Harold Ballard. Cherry would have been on silent running until Harold left the scene. At least as far as the media was concerned.
     
  19. jkrx

    jkrx Registered User

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    They would have clutched and Cherry would have been fired.

    I doubt he would have been able to handle what happened after the fall of th iron curtain. Now sure everyone can change and even Cherry eventually toned it down on HNiC but eventually he would have let something slip and it would've cost him his job.
     
  20. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    I doubt it. He's been on CBC for 31 years. CBC is far from a conservative network and Cherry has pushed the envelope as far as he can go - or so we think. I just don't think even the Leafs were a good fit at that time. They were about to embark on the worst decade of their franchise. Maybe Lanny doesn't get traded if Cherry is in there but there is still the case of Sittler and Salming both starting a decline in the early 1980s. There wasn't a lot in the cupboard prospects-wise for Toronto so I don't see how any coach would survive there very long. As we saw, coaches didn't last long in that era in Toronto.
     
  21. Killion

    Killion Registered User

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    Oil & Water. Ballard was the self appointed Star of the Gardens & the Leafs. Cherry was/is an egotist & a players coach. Besides, it wouldve' made the fans' happy, been a popular move. Couldnt be having any of that now could we?.....
     
  22. Don Cherry is of European descent so it's pretty hard for him to be racist against Europeans (Caucasians.)

    Prejudiced is probably the word.
     
  23. jkrx

    jkrx Registered User

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    Prejudiced is perhaps a better word for it.
     
  24. Mike Jones

    Mike Jones Registered User

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    Things weren't any better in Denver. They were going through coaches and GMs (Not to mention owners) like people go through underwear. The interesting thing about the Rockies, however, is that they did have a core or pretty good young hockey players. But I don't think that's what made the difference in Cherry's decision to go there.

    Toronto may not have been going in a healthy direction but they were still a lot more solid than the Rockies.
     
  25. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    He's not a racist. He's a National and Ethnic Chauvanist.
     

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