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Tweedle Dee, Tweedle Dumb, Tweedle Dumbest

If you truly want to be enraged, this piece from Scott Powers ought to do it.

All three members front and center of the administration, as it were, take turns showing their ass and incompetence in this. When you really get a look at who is steering the ship at all levels, you’ll be left with no faith that any of this is ever going to be fixed. This isn’t the captain failing to spot an iceberg at night. This is three people who don’t know what an iceberg is. Let’s go through the utter slime spilling from each of their mouths.

“I think going forward it’s pretty important that we have to know who we are,” McDonough said on ESPN-1000’s “Hockey Show” on Feb. 8. “We have to know where we’re going. I think we have to do our best to get back to great. But we have to do it in the right way. There has to be a process to it. We’re in a bit of transition right now. Where we are right now is not unexpected.”

If every Hawks fan didn’t drink a gallon of paint thinner upon reading this, I’ll be surprised. Anything to ease the pain.

First of all, this doesn’t mean anything. I’ll tell you who you are, Mr. McDonough. You’re an NHL team that plays in Chicago. There. Done. Boy, that was easy. And you’re not a particularly good one. All of this “right way” and “process” gobbledygook is just someone who doesn’t have any idea what he’s talking about trying to sound smart. I’m a little surprised he didn’t find a way to work “synergy” and “proactive” into the conversation. It’s been three years of this horseshit, and just now they’re thinking about “a direction.” Left at Albuquerque, dimwit.

I also love this, “I think we have to do our best to get back to great.” Oh you do, do you? Fucking groundbreaking! What a discovery! Here every other NHL team is straining and scratching just to get their teams to “watchable.” But here comes Albert/Aristotle/Confucius McDonough and he’s got a new idea! He’s gonna strive for great! ELECT THIS MAN PRESIDENT OF THE GODDAMN UNIVERSE! HE WILL GUIDE US TO NEW HEIGHTS WITH HIS BRILLIANT AND TO THIS POINT UNHEARD OF IDEAS! ALIEN CIVILIZATIONS WILL TREMBLE AT HIS ACUMEN AND LAY DOWN THEIR PHOTONS!

Secondly, if this is not unexpected, then why did you fire Quenneville? If this was all part of your process, why wasn’t his performance up to par? And the day you did that, mind, you said this was a playoff roster. It’s going to miss the playoffs by open lengths for a third straight year. You expect us to buy this?

Do we know if McDonough is capable of tying his shoes?

Then it was Stan Bowman’s turn to open his mouth and remove all doubt.

“There’s no question we’re positioned better down the road,” 

Well… I have a question. What does a second and third round pick guarantee exactly? They’re lottery tickets. Sure, they could position you better in the future. And those players could end up with a squeegee in their hands in four years. Do they really think Slava Demin is going to change the Hawks’ fortunes? Those 23 points in two college seasons he’s played must’ve been really impressive.

But for where we’re at right now, it’s important to try to build up some assets and build for the future, and I think we’re in a better position to do that now than we were yesterday.”

If that was the goal, then Brandon Saad and Corey Crawford should have also been shipped out for whatever you can get. If gaining assets and solidifying the future was priority one, then you do that as much as humanly possible. If your aim is two or three years down the road (and we’ll get to that in a minute), then these players probably don’t matter to you. But what Stan did was half-ass it. Which he’s been doing for years. They didn’t pick a road, just paid lip-service to it while pointing in various directions to look like they’re doing something.

We haven’t even gotten to the good part yet.

“The biggest thing is in today’s game is having young players play an important role,” Bowman said. “I think the last couple years we picked in the top 10 the last two years. We hadn’t picked there I don’t know how many years it was, probably since we picked Patrick (Kane). So I think that’s where you get some of those high-end players. I think the challenge is to try to get as many of those as you can and then build from that way out. Luckily, we still have some other established players that are difference-makers.

Certainly hard to trade for. I guess it happens rarely when they become available. You typically have to draft them or develop them. Maybe trade for them or sign them as free agents.

“There’s no shortcut to it other than drafting and developing those players. Then the question is how do you acquire those? That’s what we’re trying to do, trying to acquire either young prospects or draft choices we can use to find that next group. 

I’m going to need to go lie down.

Let’s try and clear this out as best we can. Do you know how many top-10 picks anchored the Hawks’ Cup teams? Three. Toews, Kane, Seabrook. Keith was a 2nd-rounder. Bolland too. Same for Saad. Crawford as well. Hjalmarsson a 4th. Kruger too. Shaw a 3rd. Should I keep going? Good, because if I do my organs are going to bindle-up and thumb it out of my body.

Aside from Kane and Toews, the Hawks have two top-ten picks in the lineup now in Dach and Boqvist. How many more do you need, chumley? You have to do more than just hit in the first round. And you just turned down the chance to take more spins at getting those impact players. DeBrincat is the only player taken by the Hawks beyond the first round to have any impact in six fucking years, and that’s just going back to Vinnie Hinostroza. You probably have to go back to Saad in 20-motherfucking-11 to find a true one.

So you want to tell me more about your development system, Stanley?

Also, just off the top of my head, here are genuinely impactful players that have either been traded or moved as a free agent in just the past couple years: Taylor Hall, PK Subban, Jacob Trouba, Ryan O’Reilly, J.T. Miller, Erik Karlsson, Joe Pavelski, Tyson Barrie, Artemi Panarin, Matt Duchene, John Tavares, Phil Kessel, Jason Zucker, Jeff Skinner, Nino Neiderreiter. Funny, none of them went to the Hawks. Maybe Stan was too busy figuring out his formula and McDonough was trying to find a compass so he could learn how to use it so he could point the Hawks in a direction. That’s if he can figure out who they are first, of course. Seems to me you can find impact players in all sorts of ways.

“Yeah, I think if it was something that was known, if we knew exactly what the future held then you could have that conversation, but it’s just a lot of guesswork on everybody’s part as far as nobody knows what our team’s going to be year to year,” 

That quote right there is a fireable offense.

You’re the GM. You’re the one plotting the course. You’re supposed to know exactly how long it’s going to take for the Hawks to compete. It’s supposed to be laid out in your office. You’ve had three years of serving up trash, and you still can’t say how long it’s going to be? You’re supposed to know exactly when every prospect should be reaching the NHL. How much time they need in junior/college, AHL, and then your team. You know when every contract is up, and who will be a free agent every year from here until the ocean swallows us all (do I need to tell you about CapFriendly.com?) Tell you what, we’ll all turn our tickets back in and you can call us when you’ve got it figured out.

The Hawks have wasted three years, and are now not just telling the fans but their veteran players who actually eat the shit every night of losing that they don’t have a plan or an idea when they might be able to stop eating shit. Also, and I didn’t include quotes for this, but Stan goes on to say he doesn’t feel the need to talk to Toews, Kane, and Keith about what the plans are, exactly a year after he said that’s exactly what he would do. Which is probably best, because Keith might knife him at this point.

If you swapped Bulls and Hawks management for a month, would anyone notice?

Oh but don’t you worry, dear reader, because Jeremy Colliton got to spill industrial waste over his bottom lip and will have a Hazmat crew called in to clean up.

“My responsibility is to push these guys to play at their highest level every night, and particularly the young players, to give them opportunity to improve and couple that with feedback and accountability, as far as what they’re doing every day, so they can take a bigger and bigger role,”

I can’t.

This comes merely hours before Colliton called out his players for the second time in a week for not playing hard enough, for not paying attention to the details, for doing their own thing. Dylan Strome is on a wing. Adam Boqvist won’t move his feet with the puck in his or the neutral zone. Kirby Dach spent half the season on the fourth line. Dylan Sikura isn’t even here for Matthew Highmore. Lucas Carlsson was called up after Dennis Gilbert and then scratched for Nick Seeler.

Let’s go about it this way. Which young player is better now than when Colliton showed up? A grunt like Matthew Highmore? Valhalla here we come.

The goddamn plane has crashed into the mountain, my friends.


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