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Kyle Dubas not returning as GM

Started by CarltonTheBear, May 19, 2023, 10:58:11 AM

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Bender

Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 11:47:24 AM
Quote from: Zanzibar Buck-Buck McFate on May 23, 2023, 10:28:54 AM
Quote from: CarltonTheBear on May 23, 2023, 08:52:31 AMI could somewhat understand the concern levels if Dubas like took his entire family on a 2-week vacation to Costa Rica to ponder his future or something, but the dude was back in the office working on Wednesday. That comment was way overblown.

Well, the fanbase didn't generate the angst.  Shanahan said the comments were the beginning of his second thoughts.

https://ca.style.yahoo.com/maple-leafs-president-brendan-shanahan-reveals-why-he-fired-gm-kyle-dubas-211839443.html
Quote"The next day though, I would say while watching Kyle's press [conference]... I think at that point, there was a dramatic shift in my thinking as I drove home that night as Kyle expressed, he may not want to be our GM and I have to take that very seriously," Shanahan continued.

"As I said to him the day before, I understood those feelings and the pressure players are under, the pressure management, coaches, family members are under. But it was a very real possibility at that point that I would be needing to look somewhere else. As part of my job, that is what I began to do while still hoping Kyle and I would come to some resolution."

Dubas gave Shanahan, the board, anyone related to the team and the fans cause to be concerned with his remarks outlining uncertainty. Shanahan suddenly had to begin to prepare for potentially getting a new GM.

Quote"You're talking about the Vatican if you're Catholic, you're talking the centre of the hockey universe, you're talking about one of the most important jobs in hockey, running the Toronto Maple Leafs," Burke said. "It's a dream job."

He did say he was surprised at what he said "publicly." I think that part's highly important, and may even go beyond just Shanahan.
"They say you can judge a man by the company he keeps. So here is the professor's oldest friend, a grotesque, stinking lobster." - Bender

Nik

Quote from: Bender on May 23, 2023, 03:42:37 PM
Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 09:26:11 AMYeah, that makes sense. I cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would over think "The end to the season made Dubas re-evaluate what he felt he needed professionally to progress with the Leafs and the Leafs/Shanahan apparently balked at what he wanted".

Im actually surprised you can be surprised at what people should or shouldn't think about the situation based on what is essentially one sentence of new information provided by Kyle via tweet.

A) I didn't say I was surprised and B) this isn't specific to what Dubas said. Dubas taking stock of the season as a whole and how it informs what he wanted from the job going forward would make sense regardless of what he said and, contrary to what has been stated by some, isn't a sign of dishonesty or unreliability. It would be true of most people looking for a new contract.
I wish to hell I'd never said "Winning isn't everything it's the only thing". What I believe is, if you go out on a football field, or any endeavour in life, and you leave every fibre of what you have on the field, then you've won.
- Vince Lombardi

Nik

Quote from: Bender on May 23, 2023, 03:30:58 PMOnly in Toronto for this sport, type of issue. The Leafs and their fan base is hardly unique in the vast world of sport.

Admittedly I cant claim to be particularly familiar with fans of every sport in the world but there is a particular sort of hockey fan that, to my experience anyway, is fairly unique. The sort who seems very interested in proclaiming that the athletes in their favourite sport are tougher than athletes in other sports and who watch press conferences and count how many times someone says "I" vs. "We" and then makes a big deal about what this says about a person.

Cross that with Leafs fans and their own particular nature and you get a strain that can be pretty predictable.
I wish to hell I'd never said "Winning isn't everything it's the only thing". What I believe is, if you go out on a football field, or any endeavour in life, and you leave every fibre of what you have on the field, then you've won.
- Vince Lombardi

lamajama

Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 11:30:15 AMThis just keeps getting dumber and dumber.

Thanks Nik. This actually made me laugh out loud.
I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was blaming you.

cw

Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 04:11:17 PM
Quote from: Bender on May 23, 2023, 03:42:37 PM
Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 09:26:11 AMYeah, that makes sense. I cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would over think "The end to the season made Dubas re-evaluate what he felt he needed professionally to progress with the Leafs and the Leafs/Shanahan apparently balked at what he wanted".

Im actually surprised you can be surprised at what people should or shouldn't think about the situation based on what is essentially one sentence of new information provided by Kyle via tweet.

A) I didn't say I was surprised and B) this isn't specific to what Dubas said. Dubas taking stock of the season as a whole and how it informs what he wanted from the job going forward would make sense regardless of what he said and, contrary to what has been stated by some, isn't a sign of dishonesty or unreliability. It would be true of most people looking for a new contract.

Dubas taking stock is well and good. Most people looking for a new contract would be going through that process - especially in the wake of a renewal last summer being turned down.

But it is not unfair to expect a bunch of that stock got taken during the nearly five years he was on the job. There should have been considerable reflection before last week when he didn't get a renewal last summer.

All the personnel decisions ended two months ago - at the deadline. Whatever thoughts he might have had on autonomy or the decision approval process should have been pretty well developed.  And Dubas couldn't figure that out until last Monday? Really?

His agent was able to deliver comparable NHL GM salary figures, etc that are at his finger tips. That didn't have to wait until last week either.

The stuff about it affecting family is not as likely to get as much sympathy in the league because most NHL GMs, head coaches and NHL players along with many others in pro sports go through similar stuff. If you can't stand the heat, you have to get out of the kitchen. Dubas had five years to take stock of that.

Many or most of the conclusions from those considerations above should have developed long before the last week and been presented to Shanahan.

According to Shanahan, Dubas delayed finalization of the process but Shanahan proceeded to work things out with his agent.

Some folks were not in favor of renewing him last summer. Since then, he's won one playoff round in five years. So he was on shaky ground. That is not a time to play games.

Dubas should have been more forthright sooner than he was. When he was not, that behavior triggers mistrust and loss of faith - particularly when it risked the behavior might be construed that he delayed the process to get leverage. If Dubas had issues, they should have been on the table long before last Monday.

What Dubas said publicly was catastrophic to any attempts to rein that in. The media and social networking were all over it. Board members were made aware when they might not have been otherwise. As Shanahan claimed, what Dubas said publicly (and did) was very significant. Stuff Dubas said last Monday and did between then and last Thursday and stuff he didn't do before then, cost him his job. He had nearly five years to take stock of his situation, man up and present it. Making the statement he did and waiting until last week was a fatal strategy or execution.

Bender

#290
Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 08:17:26 PM
Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 04:11:17 PM
Quote from: Bender on May 23, 2023, 03:42:37 PM
Quote from: Nik on May 23, 2023, 09:26:11 AMYeah, that makes sense. I cannot for the life of me understand why anyone would over think "The end to the season made Dubas re-evaluate what he felt he needed professionally to progress with the Leafs and the Leafs/Shanahan apparently balked at what he wanted".

Im actually surprised you can be surprised at what people should or shouldn't think about the situation based on what is essentially one sentence of new information provided by Kyle via tweet.

A) I didn't say I was surprised and B) this isn't specific to what Dubas said. Dubas taking stock of the season as a whole and how it informs what he wanted from the job going forward would make sense regardless of what he said and, contrary to what has been stated by some, isn't a sign of dishonesty or unreliability. It would be true of most people looking for a new contract.

Dubas taking stock is well and good. Most people looking for a new contract would be going through that process - especially in the wake of a renewal last summer being turned down.

But it is not unfair to expect a bunch of that stock got taken during the nearly five years he was on the job. There should have been considerable reflection before last week when he didn't get a renewal last summer.

All the personnel decisions ended two months ago - at the deadline. Whatever thoughts he might have had on autonomy or the decision approval process should have been pretty well developed.  And Dubas couldn't figure that out until last Monday? Really?

His agent was able to deliver comparable NHL GM salary figures, etc that are at his finger tips. That didn't have to wait until last week either.

The stuff about it affecting family is not as likely to get as much sympathy in the league because most NHL GMs, head coaches and NHL players along with many others in pro sports go through similar stuff. If you can't stand the heat, you have to get out of the kitchen. Dubas had five years to take stock of that.

Many or most of the conclusions from those considerations above should have developed long before the last week and been presented to Shanahan.

According to Shanahan, Dubas delayed finalization of the process but Shanahan proceeded to work things out with his agent.

Some folks were not in favor of renewing him last summer. Since then, he's won one playoff round in five years. So he was on shaky ground. That is not a time to play games.

Dubas should have been more forthright sooner than he was. When he was not, that behavior triggers mistrust and loss of faith - particularly when it risked the behavior might be construed that he delayed the process to get leverage. If Dubas had issues, they should have been on the table long before last Monday.

What Dubas said publicly was catastrophic to any attempts to rein that in. The media and social networking were all over it. Board members were made aware when they might not have been otherwise. As Shanahan claimed, what Dubas said publicly (and did) was very significant. Stuff Dubas said last Monday and did between then and last Thursday and stuff he didn't do before then, cost him his job. He had nearly five years to take stock of his situation, man up and present it. Making the statement he did and waiting until last week was a fatal strategy or execution.

I whole heartedly agree here. Shanahan may have felt Dubas wasn't negotiating in good faith. He met face to face with Dubas on Wednesday (which is more than a fair amount of time to decide if he agreed with the offer or not) and received no clarity on his status only to make what could be perceived as a disrespectful counter offer a day later and an email that he'd like to come back. Some would argue why didn't they just say no and make another offer? Because they believed that Dubas asking for another financial package after the framework was agreed upon via email was the additional indication that he'd only come back on his specific terms and thus he wasn't into his role as it was laid out and I can see why that would piss people off, especially after his presser.

Just an anecdote, and obviously the stakes are much different... in my early twenties I was working two jobs: part time retail and part time at a not for profit. I was offered a full time keyholder position at retail and I asked for a couple of days to think about it. Both retail and the NGO weren't ideal jobs for various reasons but I reached out to my manager two days later saying I wanted the keyholder role. She said she had already picked someone else for it because she had the sense they wanted it more.

Now, I'm not saying what she did was right, but I learned pretty early in my life that there's always someone else who would really want your opportunity, especially if you don't have much leverage. You would hope a 37 year old man of his stature would have that kind of awareness.
"They say you can judge a man by the company he keeps. So here is the professor's oldest friend, a grotesque, stinking lobster." - Bender

CarltonTheBear

At the risk of sounding like even more of a Dubas-apologist than normal I do think it's fair to point out the issues involved in trying to dissect a situation like this using only one side of the events. You can be sure that if Dubas was able to give his minute-by-minute breakdown of how the negotiations unfolded it would be a lot more pro-Dubas-y than Shanahan's version of events, with the truth probably being a blend of the two.

But for as long as Dubas is trying to get another job in hockey he'll likely never be in a position where he feels comfortable "airing out the laundry" the way Shanahan did. So this will basically go down as the hockey equivalent of the "history is written by the victors" quote.

herman

#292
Quote from: CarltonTheBear on May 23, 2023, 09:14:36 PMAt the risk of sounding like even more of a Dubas-apologist than normal I do think it's fair to point out the issues involved in trying to dissect a situation like this using only one side of the events. You can be sure that if Dubas was able to give his minute-by-minute breakdown of how the negotiations unfolded it would be a lot more pro-Dubas-y than Shanahan's version of events, with the truth probably being a blend of the two.

But for as long as Dubas is trying to get another job in hockey he'll likely never be in a position where he feels comfortable "airing out the laundry" the way Shanahan did. So this will basically go down as the hockey equivalent of the "history is written by the victors" quote.

Yup. I'm pro transparency and all that, but not so keen on one side of the negotiation presenting things under the guise of factual information (brought to you by Ford) without the other's consent.

And I'm only piggybacking of Carlton's post because he put it very nicely instead of calling you all corporate shills like I was planning to earlier :)
#27

CarltonTheBear

Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 08:17:26 PMAll the personnel decisions ended two months ago - at the deadline. Whatever thoughts he might have had on autonomy or the decision approval process should have been pretty well developed.  And Dubas couldn't figure that out until last Monday? Really?

This is just a hypothetical... but let's say there was a trade that Dubas felt would make the Leafs a better team at the deadline or before and one way or another it got blocked. Either through Shanahan directly saying no or due to time running out on a deal because of Toronto's current chain of command when it comes to big deals (Dubas -> Shanahan -> board -> back to Shanahan - > back to Dubas). Let's say Dubas is watching the Florida series and the entire time thinking "man, if I was able to acquire so and so he could have made a drastic difference in winning this series and potentially winning the Cup".

Would it not be at least somewhat reasonable for Dubas to think he's justified in attempting to re-open the "autonomy" conversation one last time post-elimination?

This is a pretty extreme hypothetical obviously but I do think it's not completely unreasonable for Dubas' thoughts on what his next contract should and should not include would change over the course of a playoff run. Just like it would be possible for the Leafs to have ignored their post-deadline contract talks with Dubas and just fired him if the Leafs got swept 4-0 in the first round. Nothing was set in stone at that point.

IJustLurkHere

Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 11:47:24 AM
Quote from: Zanzibar Buck-Buck McFate on May 23, 2023, 10:28:54 AM
Quote from: CarltonTheBear on May 23, 2023, 08:52:31 AMI could somewhat understand the concern levels if Dubas like took his entire family on a 2-week vacation to Costa Rica to ponder his future or something, but the dude was back in the office working on Wednesday. That comment was way overblown.

Well, the fanbase didn't generate the angst.  Shanahan said the comments were the beginning of his second thoughts.

https://ca.style.yahoo.com/maple-leafs-president-brendan-shanahan-reveals-why-he-fired-gm-kyle-dubas-211839443.html
Quote"The next day though, I would say while watching Kyle's press [conference]... I think at that point, there was a dramatic shift in my thinking as I drove home that night as Kyle expressed, he may not want to be our GM and I have to take that very seriously," Shanahan continued.

"As I said to him the day before, I understood those feelings and the pressure players are under, the pressure management, coaches, family members are under. But it was a very real possibility at that point that I would be needing to look somewhere else. As part of my job, that is what I began to do while still hoping Kyle and I would come to some resolution."

Dubas gave Shanahan, the board, anyone related to the team and the fans cause to be concerned with his remarks outlining uncertainty. Shanahan suddenly had to begin to prepare for potentially getting a new GM.

Quote"You're talking about the Vatican if you're Catholic, you're talking the centre of the hockey universe, you're talking about one of the most important jobs in hockey, running the Toronto Maple Leafs," Burke said. "It's a dream job."

We are filling gaps in what we know with assumptions. When a negotiation blows up like this, fair to guess there was some missed expectations... but i don't think we know enough to extrapolate that to lack of forthrightness and dishonesty on one side. Expectation management is a two way street.

Another way of interpreting Shanahan's statement would be that he was listening to Dubas' press conference, he thought his best and final offer was about to get signed, and hearing Kyle talk made him realised it wasn't. He heard the tone and realised the deal was far from closed, but had no more to give... He now has to start thinking about other options. Same facts, same outcome, without a villain. Do I know it happened that way? No. Does it seem more likely than Dubas screwing Shanahan and MLSE? Yes.

The MLSE board is made up of Telco and Comms execs. Telco in particular is known for doing deals against deadlines of quarters and fiscal years on multi year contracts. I think it unlikely they walked away because Dubas didn't sound as in love with his job as Brian Burke did before he actually did the job.

cw

Quote from: CarltonTheBear on May 23, 2023, 09:22:59 PM
Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 08:17:26 PMAll the personnel decisions ended two months ago - at the deadline. Whatever thoughts he might have had on autonomy or the decision approval process should have been pretty well developed.  And Dubas couldn't figure that out until last Monday? Really?

This is just a hypothetical... but let's say there was a trade that Dubas felt would make the Leafs a better team at the deadline or before and one way or another it got blocked. Either through Shanahan directly saying no or due to time running out on a deal because of Toronto's current chain of command when it comes to big deals (Dubas -> Shanahan -> board -> back to Shanahan - > back to Dubas). Let's say Dubas is watching the Florida series and the entire time thinking "man, if I was able to acquire so and so he could have made a drastic difference in winning this series and potentially winning the Cup".

Would it not be at least somewhat reasonable for Dubas to think he's justified in attempting to re-open the "autonomy" conversation one last time post-elimination?

This is a pretty extreme hypothetical obviously but I do think it's not completely unreasonable for Dubas' thoughts on what his next contract should and should not include would change over the course of a playoff run. Just like it would be possible for the Leafs to have ignored their post-deadline contract talks with Dubas and just fired him if the Leafs got swept 4-0 in the first round. Nothing was set in stone at that point.

Dubas was paid millions of dollars for nearly five years as General Manager after being paid well to serve about four years as assistant GM. The part I'm having trouble with on the autonomy/decision making process complaint/concern (if accurate) is: "Why did you, Dubas, wait 4+5 years to raise the grievance?" If he answered "I was just following my contract", I'd fire him on the spot. No company has perfect procedures, job descriptions and employment contracts. The General Manager has the responsibility to sort out those issues and not wait 4+5 years to resolve them when his contract comes up. If that is what went down, I'd have zero sympathy for Dubas as it is a pretty clear cut dereliction of his duty.

If they had been in discussions for two months as Shanahan maintained and Dubas lobbed a 50% increase in pay last Thursday, I'd be put off by that too. Should have come much sooner.

As for Shanahan, I'm not too thrilled with him either. He needed to establish a date they needed a GM decision by so they had time to go through a hiring process. That date was somewhere close to shortly after the trade deadline. "We need a finalized contract with you, Kyle, by the middle of March. If not, we have to move on." Shanahan messed up too.


IJustLurkHere

Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 10:57:01 PM
Quote from: CarltonTheBear on May 23, 2023, 09:22:59 PM
Quote from: cw on May 23, 2023, 08:17:26 PMAll the personnel decisions ended two months ago - at the deadline. Whatever thoughts he might have had on autonomy or the decision approval process should have been pretty well developed.  And Dubas couldn't figure that out until last Monday? Really?

This is just a hypothetical... but let's say there was a trade that Dubas felt would make the Leafs a better team at the deadline or before and one way or another it got blocked. Either through Shanahan directly saying no or due to time running out on a deal because of Toronto's current chain of command when it comes to big deals (Dubas -> Shanahan -> board -> back to Shanahan - > back to Dubas). Let's say Dubas is watching the Florida series and the entire time thinking "man, if I was able to acquire so and so he could have made a drastic difference in winning this series and potentially winning the Cup".

Would it not be at least somewhat reasonable for Dubas to think he's justified in attempting to re-open the "autonomy" conversation one last time post-elimination?

This is a pretty extreme hypothetical obviously but I do think it's not completely unreasonable for Dubas' thoughts on what his next contract should and should not include would change over the course of a playoff run. Just like it would be possible for the Leafs to have ignored their post-deadline contract talks with Dubas and just fired him if the Leafs got swept 4-0 in the first round. Nothing was set in stone at that point.

Dubas was paid millions of dollars for nearly five years as General Manager after being paid well to serve about four years as assistant GM. The part I'm having trouble with on the autonomy/decision making process complaint/concern (if accurate) is: "Why did you, Dubas, wait 4+5 years to raise the grievance?" If he answered "I was just following my contract", I'd fire him on the spot. No company has perfect procedures, job descriptions and employment contracts. The General Manager has the responsibility to sort out those issues and not wait 4+5 years to resolve them when his contract comes up. If that is what went down, I'd have zero sympathy for Dubas as it is a pretty clear cut dereliction of his duty.

Nice line of speculation there to get from he wanted more autonomy to dereliction of duty, and then have zero sympathy for the scenario you created.

There's a big difference between it being a last minute sticking point and it being raised for the first time. As far as we know, this has been a continuous dialogue from the moment he was hired as an assistant. As CTB posted, there may even have been a concrete example of someone the Leafs could have traded for. We don't know - but, it's at least as likely as this being a brand new demand.

QuoteIf they had been in discussions for two months as Shanahan maintained and Dubas lobbed a 50% increase in pay last Thursday, I'd be put off by that too. Should have come much sooner.

Should it? Or was Thursday only the last minute because Shanahan/MLSE chose that moment to call off talks. Part of expectation management is timing. Is Shanahan's current offer best and final? Does Dubas know it is? Does Dubas accept that it is? Was it made before or after the end of the playoffs, because having waited that long, have they agreed on a timeframe for signoff?

QuoteAs for Shanahan, I'm not too thrilled with him either. He needed to establish a date they needed a GM decision by so they had time to go through a hiring process. That date was somewhere close to shortly after the trade deadline. "We need a finalized contract with you, Kyle, by the middle of March. If not, we have to move on." Shanahan messed up too.

It's only a finalised contract when everyone actually signs it. The gist seems to be that the board wouldn't sign off until they won a playoff round, so Shanahan can't do what you're advocating. Until it's signed, it's up for negotiation.



Arn

In terms of whether sacking/moving on from Dubas is the right decision or not, while I lean to the side of thinking he should have been kept on, I can understand arguments as to why it might have been ok to move on.

But I have 2 major caveats to that. If you were ready to move on, then you need to have had a succession plan in place.

And the manner of the way they did it stinks and is completely at odds with the way in which the Leafs, ironically enough mainly through the management of Dubas, had become known for "doing right by people".

I think this is where I have most issue if it creates a situation where it potentially puts people off.
I Saw Jay McClement Score.

bustaheims

Quote from: herman on May 24, 2023, 12:26:51 AMhttps://twitter.com/friedgehnic/status/1661215442835308545

This section stood out to me:

QuoteI've reported that Dubas wanted to "streamline" the Maple Leafs' decision-making structure. Somehow, that's been interpreted as the MLSE Board "interfering" with management, which is Crazytown. MLSE teams want for nothing, providing whatever is needed to be successful. They are not micromanaged. If there is anything the Board has clamped-down upon, it is executive salaries — since Mike Babcock was paid $20M (or so) not to coach. That was at the heart of Masai Ujiri's unnecessarily difficult contract discussions, and a major reason Dubas went into last season without an extension.

Like I've been saying, the Shanahan and MLSE board interference in deal making is likely a red herring. It may be an inefficient process, which could have caused some issues, but I have my doubts that there was any real meddling.
"Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not his own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan