On this week’s roundtable, Garret Hohl, Jacob Stoller and Art Middleton form our panel of writers. The guys voice their thoughts on the Jets coaching and uniforms while also shedding light to the NHL’s decision to not go to the Olympics.
Without further adieu, lets talk some hockey.
Question One: If the Jets were to actually pull the trigger on a coach firing, who of any coaches that are available would be your leading candidate to replace Paul Maurice?
Garret: Oh dear, this is hard. I’ve often said I view *most* coaches as being fairly equivalent and closely around the median. I don’t view there being too many in the tails like the Babcocks or Boudreaus. Most coaches are about equal in tradeoff.
Art: To me, that’s the entire issue with the whole “Fire Maurice” movement we’ve seen. Is there a coach out there that is significantly better than PoMo? I don’t know that there is and furthermore I don’t know if decisions about lines or player useage is entirely up to the coach anyway. That all said, I’m personally a Ralph Krueger fan, thought he got a very raw deal in Edmonton and if you could convince him to come back to the NHL, I’d pick him as my next coach.
Jacob: To be honest, I’m not one to be a big fan of coaches. But I am a fan of Dallas Eakins, who I don’t think was given a fair shot at the NHL level.
Question Two: Supposing for a moment that Vegas doesn’t take Michael Hutchinson and both he and Hellebuyck are with the Jets next season, should the Jets still go out and get a “big name” goalie like a Ben Bishop or Marc Andre Fluery as has been rumored and speculated upon?
Garret: Yes and no. Yes, get someone. No, avoid the “big name” goalies. Simply because goalies are quite sporadic in performance (Pavelec posted 920 one season) and the market is weird, it’s better to try to go for the middle group of the goalies. Too often you way overpay a premium for the top in the goalie market, when a good chunk of the guys in the middle put similar performances up for cheap.
Art: Garret said it best really, but I do like Ben Bishop, so for the right price on say a two year deal I’d nab him. Otherwise you may as well just stick with what they have and maybe look at other ways to improve both the defense and maaaaybe how the goalies get coached up.
Jacob: Here’s an idea– go for Ben Bishop. Offer him an attractive sum of cash on a three year deal ( I don’t think anybody will give him a long-term deal on the open market) Let him come in and form a solid tandem with Hellebuyck. By year three of the deal, maybe Hellebuyck takes over. Maybe he’s the number one all along, who knows? That’d be an interesting scenario.
Question Three: Is a possible lack of NHL participation in the Olympics that big a deal, or is the NHL shooting themselves in the foot by not going?
Garret: Life will go on, but Olympics help grow the game, so that is a missed opportunity. It’s interesting that a league that for the past 20 years focused on non-traditional markets due to the larger potential for growth versus the easy money an established traditional market won’t take a risk for the Olympics to expand the game.
Art: The NHL comes out one day and says “don’t hold your breath” for Olympic participation in South Korea, and then a day later announces exhibition games and a willingness to get more involved in China with an eye on them having an Olympic games in 2022? Am I missing something here NHL? This is such a ridiculous thing to have happen. I sometimes wonder what the league would be like if it had competent leadership.
Jacob: The Olympic tourney may be a nuccessence to the NHL and the World Cup may be more convenient, but the Olympic games exposes the game all around the world. It’s a long term investment that I believe, will pay off down the road.
Question Four: Should the Jets just go all-in on the white heritage jersey, create a blue version of it and have those as the primary jersey?
Garret: Yes. But it won’t happen.
Art: I love the Jets current unis the way they are, but I am sad to see that the alt whites aren’t going to be permanent. Part of that is because Adidas (the new manufacturer for next season) isn’t creating third jerseys for any team, but hopefully after that the Jets bring the retro look back as an alternate because they are just beautiful *kisses fingers*
Jacob: What Garret said. It’s not going to happen, but they 100% should (in a perfect world). Here’s the thing– Jets retro colours rock and engage fans of new and old