Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Flyers Fans... Welcome to your Harold Ballard years!

Well, to start with the positive, nobody handed Craig Berube a paper bag and told him to pull it on before the press conference...

And while we kind of get a lump in our throat for the old days of NHL management as refined by Harold Ballard, in this more enlightened era of hockey, one would think that perhaps these things could be handled just a little bit better.

The Philadelphia Flyers set perhaps a new standard for dysfunctional
management on Monday, after dismissing head coach Peter Laviolette after but three games of the 2013-14 season, a remarkable thing if you think about it, having had an entire off season to ponder all the different aspects of direction that they may have wanted their team to go this year.

GM Paul Holmgren apparently having made the decision on the flight home from the latest of the Flyers losses, their third straight of the new campaign, Holmgren having decided that he didn't like the direction the Flyers were heading.

That makes for an interesting observation, since he's the fellow that put the team together and surely he had some idea as the summer months moved on that maybe HIS players and the coach may not be quite suited to each other.

The thought that the players had quit on Laviolette would be perhaps valid in say late November or early December. However, by the first week of October, the players have barely even figured out where they should park their cars on game night, let alone put together the grand machinations of a player mutiny.

The reaction to the dismissal of Laviolette, has been swift and pretty fierce, with many observers wondering why the Flyers would pull the chair out from under Laviolette after THREE games, another case of a good hockey man finding himself on the outside, or as they say in sports all the time, you can't fire the entire team (though we imagine it's tempting some days for some owners).

Philadelphia Inquirer-- Flyers' culture needs refreshening
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Three games? Quick firing a bit too quick
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Berube says he'll demand more accountability
Philadelphia Inquirer-- New coaching staff expects new attitude
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Flyers enter theater of the absurd by firing coach Peter Laviolette
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Flyers GM Paul Holmgren: Firing Peter Laviolette a 'gut feeling'
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Coaching turmoil in Philly seems to be historic
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Peter Laviolette's violent, profane history of Flyers coaching
Philadelphia Inquirer-- Snider after Flyers fire Lavy: 'My fears were realized'
Philadelphia Daily News-- Flyers fire Laviolette after 3 games
Philadelphia Daily News-- Snider: Firing wasn't his decision
Philadelphia Daily News-- Flyers Old Hat at Making Change
Philadelphia Daily News-- Snider: Firing Laviolette was Holmgren's call
Philadelphia Daily News-- Berube looks like the right man to coach the Flyers
Philadelphia Daily News-- Berube won't reveal goalie strategy
Globe and Mail-- Philadelphia Flyers hire head coach Peter Laviolette
Toronto Star-- Peter Laviolette Fired by Philadelphia Flyers
Toronto Star-- Flyers fire Peter Laviolette: Philadelphia doing just enough wrong to tantalize fans
Toronto Sun-- Flyers fire Peter Laviolette after three games
Toronto Sun-- Clock ticking on Flyers GM Holmgren, Hextall next in line
National Post-- Philadelphia Flyers catch NHL by surprise with firing of Peter Laviolette three games into season
The Hockey News-- Owner Ed Sinder defends bold, never boring Flyers culture after firing Peter Laviolette

The change of a coach is always something that is designed to catch the attention of the players, an indication that they need to pick up their game, and pick it up quickly.

This time around, while that may be the case for the Flyers' players, it's also something that most hockey fans might suggest is something the Flyers' management should consider.

Folks are talking hockey about Philly, but it surely isn't in ways that inspire confidence for the road ahead.

While we ponder the season ahead for the Flyers, a squad that seems to define the term "it's always something", we should offer up thanks for the reminder to prepare our annual feature on the blog, Hired to Be Fired...

Though truth be told, we kind of figured we had at least a couple of months before we had to haul out the reaper and  his scythe...  As it turns out, we're already behind the firing curve!

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