Monday, February 23, 2009

BREAKING NEWS. . . First Thoughts on Renney/Pearn Firing. . .[UPDATED]

A short update; I'll write more later when I have time to digest or we know more.

My immediate reaction to the news was shock. Shock because I didn't think it would happen. Perhaps shock because I got what I wanted in some way.

I know Tom Renney is a nice guy. I just don't know if anyone can convince me that he was the right coach for this team at this time. And sometimes that's all it comes down to. That's business. Even if this team only goes on a little uptick because that's what often happens when a coach is fired, that's something. Anything is something. We'll pick up the pieces later. But to cling to what is here and what is comfortable, even though it isn't working, is lunacy. For that I'm glad he's moved on.

True questions won't be answered until Wenesday, Thursday, and much beyond. This wasn't a final destination. It was a step in a direction, any direction.

Interesting though, that it was Renney AND Pearn. And for all I don't know Pearn might be a nice guy, but I never liked him. I don't think any of us know what it is Pelino does, but perhaps Sather thinks he is less at fault than Pearn was. I mean if the powerplay was really Pearn's responsibility, I'm not sure what else you can say. Keep what works - the PK - and destroy what doesn't - the PP.

It will be an interesting week and remainder of the season on Broadway. Will personnel change on ice? Will other guys get chances? Will there be accountability? A lot has to do with who the new coach is and how much Sather still needs to tinker.

We wait with baited breath. . .

I won't lie though. I was so tired after last night. This news just woke me right the hell up.

Maybe it'll do the same for our flailing but favorite team.

P.S. Joe Micheletti was on NHL Live and I caught a bit. He's saying Tom will probably stay on in the organization in an off-ice role. And that Tortorella is a possibility. Jim Schoenfeld is another possibility. I'm for Jim finally getting a chance, but damn, would things be fun with Torts around. That's one way the team will stop playing so lazy or uninspired. Whew.

More later...

Update; 4:50pm

Sam Rosen is on XM radio now with Phil Esposito.

He's saying Tom is a players coach. Very loyal. Rarely benches a guy. Never calls a guy out in public.

Sam likes him. Terrific guy to get along with. Talk hockey with.

Mostly he says the "best players have to be the best players." Said that he and Joe would shake their head that Redden would still be on the PP every game and play well over 20 minutes a night since he hadn't scored since the third game of the season. They said that Renney stuck with guys like Redden because of his six year contract. Likewise, he stuck with Drury because he was the captain. To try to get them through their slumps because those were the guys that he had and that would be there.

Sam said his loyalty and his "niceness" to his players, if you will, was actually his biggest fault. And what inevitably got him fired in the end.

"Great guy to work with in our profession. Good guys get axed in situations like this. They can't fire the players. Somebody has to take the fall."

I think I've said Renney was perhaps too nice. Everyone kept saying how nice he was. I know I said not too long ago that you can't be the players best friend and their coach. In this case, I guess he chose wrong. I just think that you can't play favorites. And players have to be held accountable. And even more so in an NHL like this where due to the way of scoring overtimes and shootouts, points are at a premium and every game does truly count. And that means that if a guy isn't cutting it, you can't not bench him. You can't afford not to. You can't afford to be their friend.

I really wish no ill will towards Tom Renney the person. I don't. I didn't agree with his coaching decisions at many times (Prucha, PP, player personnel, ice time, accountability, etc) in the last two seasons. It didn't always seem this way; but I guess if you have Jagr and Straka, and then Shanahan and Avery, and always Lundqvist, it's easier to hide the greater flaws that may someday be exposed.

So no, I wish no ill will towards Tom, but if the Rangers bring in a new coach that will play the best players, not the players with the biggest contracts, and bench those that are not pulling their weight, no matter who and for how long, I'm going to be a more satisfied Rangers fan.

We'll see soon enough.

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