Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Columbus changes the jacket behind the bench

Scott Arniel is unlucky number seven, the now former Columbus Blue Jacket head coach the latest to join the ex coaches ranks, after Columbus dismissed him late Sunday night.

The Blue Jackets who are to be frank just woeful this year, felt that some of the blame needed to be tagged to the guy behind the bench, though if they were honest upper management might be persuaded to look in a mirror, for the short comings on the Blue Jackets are clearly much deeper than just the guy that was trying to educate and motivate a collection of players that seem to be a little in over their heads.

With a bona fide star in Rick Nash, the Blue Jackets have never really provided him with required on ice assistance to reach that potential that many felt was to be his, it's no wonder that after more than a few years of fumbling in the hockey wilderness the drums of trade bait are starting to bang loudly in Ohio, Nash really one of the few candidates that any other team might be inclined to accept from the fumbling Jackets.

For Arniel, the dismissal probably while stinging at the moment (don't read the Columbus papers though, that sting will be a little harsher if you do) should not be career limiting, most GM's around the league probably understand the bad hand he was dealt by his bosses, the results of the teams on ice performance not quite dictated by the coaching staff.

And while the perception among some of the media in Columbus is that Arniel wasn't getting the job done, there are larger issues for the Blue Jackets to solve other than the coaching acumen of the guy they just dismissed.

The Blue Jackets have long been a cellar dwelling squad, their momentum seemingly ever downward as opposed to where a team should be going considering the bounty of draft picks that their lack of success should have provided for.

To provide for perhaps the most damning indictment of the Blue Jackets blue print, how about this stat, Columbus has been in the NHL for eleven years and made the playoffs but once, as the 2011-12 season begins the back nine, it would seem likely that this will mark year number ten of the Blue Jackets absence from playoff activity.

That is clearly a failing above the pay grade of Arniel or any other coach that has listed Columbus on their resume, Todd Richards now the latest in that select club, though judging by the patience of the Columbus management one imagines he might wish to just pencil that addition in for the moment.

The growing list of the departed can be found here.

Columbus Post Dispatch-- Richards a coach again after Wild fired him
Columbus Post Dispatch-- Change at the top for Blue Jackets
Columbus Post Dispatch-- With Arniel finally gone, players now accountable
Columbus Post Dispatch-- Arniel firing jolts Blue Jackets
Columbus Post Dispatch-- Arniel  out as Blue Jackets coach
Globe and Mail-- Blue Jackets fire coach Scott Arniel
National Post-- Jackets' Scott Arniel becomes latest NHL coach to bite the dust
Toronto Star-- Columbus Blue Jackets fire coach Scott Arniel
Toronto Sun-- Blue Jackets fire Arniel
USA Today-- Blue Jackets fire coach; more moves likely

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