You’ve been hired as the Canucks’ new GM; what do you do?

Discussion in 'Vancouver Canucks' started by The Vasili Jerry, Feb 12, 2021.

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  1. vanuck But Gillis...!!!

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    Right now everything about this franchise just seems so, so rudderless. It smacks of "one step forward, one step back", with hardly any sign of direction. As a bubble team in 2019-20 that barely got into the playoffs by way of a completely random best-of-5 play-in series, they somehow manage to push VGK all the way to Game 7 and one game away from the conference final. They lose a bunch of good players to free agency due to cap issues, and bring in some equally old but worse vets. Then they proceed to have an awful start, and now sit here with a record of 8-12-2. Aquilini's basically forced to go on Twitter after a firestorm of media/fan pressure, saying they're sticking to their path of building on their young core.

    Sooooooo... what exactly is the goal for this season? Are we trying to compete and make the playoffs? This being the last year of Hughes/EP's ELCs, are we going for it? Or are we retooling? Maybe we're rebuilding? Waiting and seeing?!

    For me any new GM here has to start by setting a vision for this organization, coming up with a strategy and then executing. Of course, this assumes that ownership gives them full autonomy to do their thing - otherwise all bets are off.

    Though they'll need to face reality first: VAN now has the 3rd worst pts % in the NHL, are firmly in the bottom third of the league in all major team-level possession metrics, and MoneyPuck has them at 18.5% playoff odds. Barring some miraculous turnaround that sees us playing like a #1/2 conference seed in normal alignments, for all intents and purposes our season is over. It's time to acknowledge that this team in its current form just isn't good enough to contend this season, and thus actions should be taken accordingly. #TeamTank

    I do see a path back to contention here but before that can happen, the GM needs to start clearing out the junk on this roster. Identify team needs/weaknesses and also set short- plus long-term objectives that are all about the bigger picture so that this isn't just another lost season. For instance:

    Vision: To turn the Canucks back into a first-class model organization that strives for excellence on and off the ice, year in and year out, with the aim of being perennial challengers for the Stanley Cup. This is done by establishing a culture of accountability from top to bottom, while running a meritocracy that 1) values talent both in the front office and on the ice, 2) recognizes and is up to date with modern NHL trends, while not being afraid to constantly seek out competitive advantages via innovation as well as 3) prioritizing a data-based, scientific approach to decision-making at all levels.

    Goal: To raise the team's competitive level to that of consistent playoff contention once more, clearing out deadweight in the short-term while adding long-term pieces that actually help us improve.

    Strategy: Create some needed breathing room by attaching assets to move negative-value contracts. Then take advantage of a buyer's market on mid-level NHL veterans to find some stopgaps on cheap, 1-year deals which either help us compete in the meantime or can be traded to recoup more assets. Patience and flexibility are key here.

    To-do list:
    • Short-term
    • Maximize asset value for any pieces that aren't a fit going forward - this means guys like Pearson, Sutter, Benn and Hamonic should all be dealt with retention at the TDL for whatever we can get. Depending on how early a new GM is brought in, pumping up their value may even be possible (particularly the forwards).
    • Use the rest of 2020-21 to see what we have in the young guns/farmhands by giving OJ, Rathbone, Lind, DiPietro, Woo etc. a decent run to evaluate them. With no expectations to win at all costs, this can be used as important developmental time. For instance, play Gaudette and Virtanen in the top 6.
    • Hire a coach that can actually instill good defensive play from everyone. And preferably one who doesn't default to veterans at almost every chance when push comes to shove.
    • Ship out the junk with 1 year remaining like Beagle/Roussel/Holtby by throwing in sweeteners. Eriksson will most likely cost a 1st round pick, which may or may not be palatable.
    • Capitalize on our protection slots for the expansion draft by picking up D-men that other teams are most likely going to leave exposed - offer them a pick instead of potentially losing them for nothing. This should be another avenue to supplement our blueline for cheap.
    • Pray that we land a top 5 pick in the upcoming draft. Though assuming it isn't pushed back, this might also be a good year to trade down to net some extra picks.
    • Identify some cheap mid-tier UFA targets like a Wennberg-type signing for 3C. Other decent middle 6 forwards should be available for peanuts as well.
    • Flip these stopgaps for picks/prospects at the 2022 TDL to get some assets back if we are out of playoff contention. 2021-22 will likely be a reset year. Repeat if necessary for the 2023 deadline.
    • Long-term:
    • Do a hard evaluation of the various scouts' track records and clear out whoever isn't up to snuff.
    • Restructure the front office so that competent people who know what they're doing are actually allowed to have autonomy in their fields of expertise. E.g. one assistant GM runs the amateur scouting, one for pro scouting, another for CBA/contracts, one for the AHL team.
    • Scout around for up-and-coming front office talent. Pay up and hire the best.
    • Beyond the 2021-22 season, look at moving Myers before he really starts to decline.
    • As long as the cap remains flat, keep using the cheap stopgap strategy. This should remain a viable way to get decent supporting depth and extract additional value every time the TDL rolls around.
    • By 2022-23, look at acquiring long-term solutions to our problems (like a strong two-way 3C) as we should actually start to have enough space. Also, we should have gathered enough prospects by this point that some of them should be pushing for spots on the big club.
    • Likewise for a good top 4 D-man who can actually defend and prevent goals against while driving possession - preferably a RH shot.
    • Decide if Miller is a piece worth keeping given this team's likely timeline to contention being another 1-2 years away IF everything goes well. Considering that he'll be almost 30 by that time and needing an extension, it might be better to get ahead of things and reallocate his cap on the back-end and move him for a high-end young top 4 D-man.
    • Horvat is similar to Miller but has a bit more time, if you can re-sell him on the program again and convince him that we're serious about contending.
    • If Myers can actually be moved and our 2021 1st rounder can step in and contribute, 2022-23 should be a viable year to go for it and push for contention.

    Just some thoughts that I've had brewing in my head over the last few months now actually, but regardless of everything I've said here it's imperative that this new guy comes in and gives the organization a sense of direction and purpose again. Without the proper leadership, nothing else matters.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2021
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  2. NomadicCanadian Registered User

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    @vanuck Stop. You're making entirely too much sense. Just STAHP.

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. VanCanFanEDM Registered User

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    Can we bring GMMG back?
     
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  4. HiggsBroson Registered User

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    Give Chris a big raise starting March 2nd then fire him the day before.
     
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  5. infinitemile Registered User

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    There's been some really in-depth responses to this question, but this is the actual answer:

    DELEGATE. DELEGATE. DELEGATE. Hire the smartest and hardest-working people to run the Hockey Ops, Amateur Scouting, Pro Scouting, Salary Cap, and Medical departments, and give them the power to build their own departments how they want to. No more Dr. Benning, no more Jim & John deciding to sign Ferland anyways despite the physicians' insistence, no more feuds with the Director of Amateur Scouting. Time to modernize the organization.
     
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  6. Fire Benning diaper filled piss baby

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    why put the evil on anyone? imagine forcing people to live in that dump.
     
  7. pgj98m3 Registered User

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    C'mon Mike.....just make up with FA and save this franchise.
     
  8. Breakers Registered User

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    Fire Ron Delorme

    I’m not an authority on the CHL. Most people in here probably know more than me and definitely Ron as well. But the CHL scouting in this organization has set them back YEARS.

    you would think through sheer luck they would start to hit on some of these guys, but they don’t.
     
  9. zcaptain Registered User

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    You think that is the problem, heh? LOL
     
  10. Breakers Registered User

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    yes it is a problem.
    Scouting is the life blood of an organization.
    I think drafting should be very important to a franchise.
    When Brendan Shannan took over for instance he revamped the scouting and player development staff right away.
     
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2021
  11. StreetHawk Registered User

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    If I was starting now, I'd be realistic.

    1) Sell all possible UFAs
    2) See about being able to flip what I get back to dump bad contracts
    3) I'd move off Virtanen
    4) I would move Miller. He wil be 30 when his deal is up and I wouldn't give him a 6-8 year term, so I would have to move him
    5) I'd leave Myers exposed for the ED. I wouldn't worry if he is taken. Fine if he isn't.
    6) I generally prefer bridge deals on non elite players and term with elite players, so that is what I would do with Hughes and Petey, and go term. But, under the current economics, they may both prefer bridge deals, which is fine.

    And it goes without saying that the CHL scouting needs to be revamped and a new coaching staff is needed. I'd also like to move the the farm club to California to keep them in the same time zone.

    If I can't flip the bad contracts, then it's a development year next season to get the likes of Podkolzin, Rathbone, Lockwood, etc. some NHL experience.
     
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  12. zcaptain Registered User

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    So, you think one scout from the western hockey league, would have changed our drafting?
    What year? What pick?
    If Benning has done one thing right, it has been his amateur drafting
    Not his pro-scouting, but his entry drafting has been solid
    His trading of 2nd rounder foolish
    but his drafting, has been just fine.......
    I could give a damn about Delorme per say, but you pick Delorme out of all the things gone bad
     
  13. Breakers Registered User

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    Ron Delorme is a chief amateur scout and his speciality has always been the entire CHL Benning even said that is his speciality, and his bio used to say that on Canucks website.

    so we’re just going to glass over Virtanen and Juolevi?? What do they both have in common? Out of the CHL

    why are you bringing up Benning?
    This is a hypothical thread that Benning is gone. LOL, read the thread title.
     
  14. zcaptain Registered User

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    I get that , but disagree on Juolevi, it took some time, but he does not look out of place
    Virtanen....I agree now, but I personally think the Canucks destroyed him
    He probably needs to be moved to save his career now
    And I do understand that we do not have many out of the CHL...so I agree on that
    but overall, they have drafted top 3rd of the league
    If I recall their U25 players were ranked 4th best last year....that is drafting man!
    Just because the did not come out of the CHL does not matter, as long as they come from somewhere
    Again, I am indifferent to Delorme, so if your giving him the boot, I am not sure why, but OK, Boss
     
  15. Breakers Registered User

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    Not surprised Vancouvers u25 players were ranked high. None of them came from the CHL.

    some people would trade players for picks as their first order of business. My first order would be revamping the scouting and player development in certain areas .
     
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  16. geebaan 7th round busted

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    this post has more of a plan than Bennings had his entire 7 years
     
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  17. hoglanderisbeast Registered User

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    lets go to the streets chanting HIRE GILLIS whos with me lets go outside rodgers arena and protest
     
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  18. ProstheticConscience Game over, man! Game over!

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    Imagine defending Ron Delorme in the year 2021. Amazing.

    I will never take a Canucks GM seriously again until he cans Delorme.
     
  19. ProstheticConscience Game over, man! Game over!

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    So here's what I would do.

    1) Can Delorme.

    2) Aside from Pete, Hughes, Bo and Boeser, anyone else should be available. I mean, I like Miller when he's on, but if he's going to be a spazzy asshole headcase I'm not interested in keeping him long term. I'd sure as hell keep Hoglander over him atm. Retain up the ass for players with expiring deals. I don't think we'd get a lot, but at least it would be a start.

    3) Everyone corporate goes. Really, bye. Coaching as well.

    4) Find people who have proven pro track records for all the key positions. No more rookies or old teammates or old anything. Gradin as a scout in Sweden? Okay sure. We can talk. Maybe we can still have a few little bureaucratic cubby holes here or there, but everything major gets new blood, and people who have actually worked for successful teams before. There's always a new crop available every year. Because this town needs an enema.

    5) Tell AQ politely but firmly to f*** off and let me do my job.
     
  20. StreetHawk Registered User

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    This is classic Keyboard Warrior talk as you would not get the job doing that.

    What I would do in the interview is interview Aquaman. Basically, find out what his involvment was since 2013 to now on the player personnel decisions that were made. Find out what the reasoning was for everything from hiring Torts, firing Gillis, extending the twins, Kesler trade in taking on a 24 year of Pizza over a 19 year old Theodore, signing the free agents they did etc. What was the goal he set out for the team, why spend the money they did during those years, why he thought they were better than they actually ended up being, etc.

    I'd give him my assessment of what I would have done over that time frame and lay out where I believe the team went wrong.

    And I'd lay out, what the team did wrong before, we won't be doing that under my watch. Ultimately, I report to him, so need to know exactly who I am dealing with. I have to be able to get him to buy into my vision.
     
  21. F A N Registered User

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    Hate to say it, but you don't "can" Delorme at this point. He's purportedly a respected scout with lots of friends in the scouting community. He he has strong community and First Nations ties. He's the recipient of the Star Blanket and is considered an Elder. He has been a Canucks scout for 35 years. He's now 65 years of age. You let this (almost) life long Canuck ride off into the sunset on his terms if it's possible.
     
  22. Bubbles Fire Benning

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    Ron Delorme has survived many management changes. Keep him, but don't let him make any key decisions.

    You have to at some point separate the person and actual work performance. He has absolutely failed in his jobs as lead scout or director of scouting.

    Gillis knew that so he put Eric Crawford as another "layer" between him and Delorme. Gillis knew that actually firing Delorme would not be possible given his status in the alumni and First Nations ties.

    He thankfully was left in the weeds with Brackett in charge, but somehow Benning puts Delorme back in charge again.
     
  23. B-rock Registered User

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    Keep a running record of each scouts’ draft list in the years following the drafts. You wouldn’t get immediate results but in a few years you could get a sense of their ability from their would-be track record. Keep trimming the fat of those that prove to draft poorly year over year.

    You’d hope this was going on now, but with this dim witted crew any semblance of intelligence or reliance on data is out the window.
     
  24. B-rock Registered User

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    And what do any of those have to do with doing well at his job?
     
  25. StreetHawk Registered User

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    when his contract expires, you advise him that he won't be retained. You will grant him the decency of making a public statement that the 2 sides have mutually parted ways or he has decided to retire from the scouting profession. But, it's time to move on.
     
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