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Messages - Nik

General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
April 18, 2024, 11:31:20 AM
Quote from: Dappleganger on April 18, 2024, 09:52:55 AMIf you watch the video below, 16:50 to 23:45, it addresses the infrastructure and some parameters of the proposed deal:

If you never had politicians who weren't willing to do the work of the billionaires and try to sell people on the economic benefits of arenas(which there's near unanimous consensus on from actual economists who study the issue are wildly inflated and don't measure up to nearly any other use of public funds) then these things would never get built. What they ran into here was that the people of Glendale heard these same arguments, bought into them and then watched as their city was hit by an utter catastrophe by thinking a sports team was going to be a meaningful economic driver for them so it's no surprise the people of Tempe saw all that and decided to pass.

Then, the projects get built and the politicians pat themselves on the back and point to the bright shiny building when they're running for another office and are nowhere to be found 5 or 10 years later when the economic benefits they promise don't materialize and the owners are already demanding more money. Look at what Phoenix recently, and is still, going through with the Diamondbacks making threats about moving with a not yet even 20 year old stadium.
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
April 17, 2024, 11:37:33 PM
Quote from: Dappleganger on April 13, 2024, 02:20:42 PMhttps://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/philboas/2023/05/17/why-tempe-vote-arizona-coyotes-failed-miserably/70227759007/

This was the beginning of the end. Less than a year later the team is moving to Utah. The Tempe site and proposal was great in my opinion and was going to be funded entirely with private money. Citizens voted no.

Leaving aside that this "private money" included the city spending 200 million on infrastructure upgrades to accommodate the building and 700 million in tax relief there was still the reality that this group, whose financing was always dubious, wanted the city on the hook for a pretty significant portion of the debt they'd be taking on in order to build the "entertainment district". If the project fell apart, the city would be on the hook for hundreds of millions of dollars. These projects always, after independent analysis, are found to exaggerate the economic benefits.

I mean, think of it this way, if this project was this entirely privately funded enterprise which made a ton of economic sense without risk or cost to the city...why involve the city at all? Why not just build the thing?
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
April 17, 2024, 11:27:34 PM
Quote from: Highlander on April 13, 2024, 12:51:29 PMI know a lot of people on this board wanted this move. I invested a lot of income over the years going to see the Leafs and other teams play the Yotes.  I had some really good times and am sad to see the franchise go.  I don't think the ownership group was paying there bills. Pity, as another group may have secured the Loop site and it would have worked there.  Salt Lake is one weird place

I don't think this is an entirely fair reading of the situation. The only reason anyone "wanted" this move is because the League trying to stay in Arizona moved past plan B or C and we're on Plan V at this point, a plan that has involved the team playing in a college arena the last few years. The only reason this ownership group owned the team in the first place is because the league had exhausted every single potential alternative. If "another group" had been capable of getting anything done arena-wise they would have owned the team.

This is a bad situation that has been going on so long that at one point it prominently involved an ownership bid from someone who made their money from Blackberries being the hot new tech. The league fought tooth and nail to keep the team put at the cost of millions of dollars.

I don't think anyone has, or ever really had, any actual bad feelings towards the Coyotes but at some point you just have to call the fight.
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
February 27, 2024, 07:51:56 PM

"Just put that struggling sun belt team into a small Canadian city! They'll sell out every game!"

Quote from: Joe on February 13, 2024, 02:33:52 PMShouldn't that be the job of the development layers of the organization and not the major league? It always confused me why, for example, a goalie who has made it all the way to the nhl now all of a sudden needs a goalie coach and to be 'developed'. You've gone through coaches and development your whole life to make it to this level, and now you need to learn a new way of being a goalie?

I get the concept of refinement, but development at the major league level seems a little odd to me.

I don't think it's a binary either/or kind of thing. A player in the NHL's skill development isn't going to be the responsibility of the NHL coaching staff but using him in the right situations to foster development, the mental/motivational aspect of coaching and addressing challenges that come up as players need to make adjustments are sort of in that realm.
Quote from: Chris on February 12, 2024, 01:30:06 PMOK, how about "potentially more dangerous" or "potentially very dangerous" or "more likely to cause serious injury." Pick whatever language suits you, but there are good reasons why there are rules in place against certain types of hits (hits from behind, boarding, spearing etc). The fact that Grieg doesn't appear to have been injured should be factored in, but the high cross-check certainly had more potential to cause serious injury than the typical body check.

I wasn't trying to get into semantics here. I was just making the point that any kind of hit has the potential to be all manner of dangerous based on things outside of the hitter's control. I think the fact that Greig didn't get seriously hurt suggests that while it may have looked bad, I don't think Rielly really intended to hurt him even in the sort of fog of war that you can attribute to pretty clear cases of intent to injure. Obviously the NHL has rules against cross checking for good reason but I think we can all tell the difference between the really bad examples and the less bad examples and I was just saying that I thought this was the latter.
Quote from: Chris on February 12, 2024, 11:57:24 AMHe should have just jumped him, pushed him into the boards, punched him or cross checked him in the waist area. But he didn't - he led with his stick up high. Regardless of whether Grieg's arm helped the stick run up into his neck area, the initial contact was too high and potentially dangerous.

I don't know if I like that take either though. Just about every single hit, clean or dirty, is "potentially dangerous". I think the fact that he didn't get hurt should actually be the deciding factor. I don't think Rielly hit him hard enough, or hit him in the sort of way, where a serious injury could or should be reasonably expected.

It was the wrong thing to do, no doubt, but more than a couple of games for this to me, I think, would be less about what Rielly actually did and more about using this as an example to "send a message".

I think the Rielly thing is just an example of how following sports is less fun as an adult. As a kid I would have been "Yeah, play stupid games and win stupid prizes. Don't disrespect the other team. Eat it, sucker" and while I still kind of feel that way emotionally, logically I know it is neither a mature response nor a good one if you care about the team, you know, winning games.
Quote from: cw on January 09, 2024, 02:33:59 PMThat is tougher to do any time soon with fewer top draft picks that tend to graduate to the NHL faster and a 27th ranked prospect system. A lot of contending teams have problems like this. The Leafs are arguably in the more extreme circumstance. Some questioning of that seem very fair to me.

I think you've hit on the real issue though which is the paucity of talent developed by previous management teams. Sure being top heavy is an issue but it's only a serious issue if you're a team that can't fill holes from within. Obviously it would be better if the team had their top end making a little less but ideally the regret there would be because it made it tough to retain all the talented homegrown players that gave your roster depth similar to what the Lightning have been dealing with recently.

But if the issue is that you don't have the money to use the UFA market to build out your roster then I'm pretty dubious of that as a strategy regardless of how much money you're paying your stars.
Quote from: Britishbulldog on January 08, 2024, 03:19:24 PMI really don't understand the negotiating stance the Leafs took with this deal.

If the player was willing to take less than expected then give him the NTC.  If you are paying him top dollar than he loses the NTC.  Nylander got both.

If the deal is 8 then the player takes less as they decline in ability due to age or if they want top dollar then they get fewer years so that they aren't given superstar money as a 2nd or 3rd line player.  Nylander got both.

That's not really how a negotiation like this would work though. If the Leafs go to Nylander and say "We've got two options for you, you can have 10m a year with a NTC or you can have 12 million a year without one" then he'll say "Well, I'm pretty sure I can get the money I want and the NTC I want as a UFA so no thanks". The Leafs have to convince him to sign here.

Likewise the idea that a long term deal will drive the AAV down only works if A) the player doesn't think he can get the deal as a UFA but also B) the idea is that if Nylander signed a 4 year deal, he'd be able to sign another four year deal at a higher AAV when the cap has grown. Signing an 8 year deal guarantees the player money but he gives up being able to renegotiate the deal as the cap grows.

Quote from: Britishbulldog on January 08, 2024, 03:19:24 PMThe makeup of a Stanley Cup team is NOT a mystery.  It has been consistent for decades with only a few exceptions over that whole time.  How close is Toronto to a Stanley Cup team??

I don't think this is true at all. Post the last lockout and the changes made to the CBA then what constitutes a Cup winning team has never looked more different from year to year. The Blackhawks won with a ton of talent but were probably only capable of being the team they were because a lot of their better players signed the sort of back-diving deals that teams can't take advantage of now. The Kings won with solid depth, elite goaltending and no super-duper stars. The Penguins were almost the opposite with a bunch of hall of famers and then filled out depth. The Lightning probably came the closest to the Chicago model because so many of their guys took under market deals. The Avs, Blues and Knights with the latter two having a real whiff of one-year wonder to them.

It's not like the 90's anymore where having 2 Hall of Fame C's, a HOF D-man and a HOF in Net was basically the only blueprint to winning. These days I don't think there's any sort of pattern to building a cup winner other than trying to build a team with as few weaknesses as possible, getting into the playoffs and then hoping your goalie gets hot for a while.

I think anyone who says they know definitively what constitutes a cup winner these days is working off old information.
I feel like this deal is pretty reasonable given that if a player with his numbers last year hit the FA market it's hard to imagine them getting a deal substantially less than this. That he's stepped it up a notch this year probably gave him a little more muscle in these negotiations but probably not much more than a 500k to 1m bump. He was always going to be 10-12.

I like watching him play, he's been a consistent playoff performer, happy he'll be around.
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
November 16, 2023, 06:35:52 PM

To be clear, I'm not blaming expansion. I'm blaming the cap.

Beyond that, I'm not sure what the distinction is between selling star players vs. winning unless there's a mechanism in place like the cap where having star players makes it harder for a team to win. The best teams of all time were star driven.
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
November 15, 2023, 11:16:32 PM
Quote from: L K on November 15, 2023, 03:06:40 PMConnor McDavid is never going to be Mr. Personality.  He might be fun behind closed doors but in front of the media McDavid is someone who sucks.  I think you can get that kind of marketing from the Hughes brothers, Tkachuk, etc. and the league needs to do a better job of promoting that. 

I mean, I've seen Matthew Tkachuk give interviews and really the closest any of these guys have to what we'd call a personality is a sort of pale imitation of the Pat McAfee/Spittin' Chiclets Bro Culture that I don't really think works for the kind of marketing you're talking about. These guys just aren't cool. They're the guys in the movie who ends up covered in a milkshake while the nerd makes out with the head cheerleader.

But even say for a minute they had the sizzle. I still think you're missing the larger structural issue of what happens when you try to sell the steak. Love Matthew Tkachuk? Think he's a really exciting guy? Well why not buy a ticket where he'll play 1/3 of the game and he averages being involved in 1.3 scoring plays per night and maybe fights 6 or 7 times a year. That isn't the same thing as Basketball where Giannis is doing 15 exciting things a night or football where Patrick Mahomes is on the field and making something happen every offensive play. The most exciting charismatic guy in the NHL is still a guy who's not playing most of the game and can't make a team good by himself.

I know people hate to hear it and I don't like saying it because it doesn't make me feel good but people liked fighting. People liked Rock 'Em, Sock 'Em kind of hits. I think it's great that the game is safer but you can't get away from the fact that on those 3rd/4th lines you're replacing selling Domi vs. Probert with some speedy Czechs and Latvians who don't have much in the way of hands but, oh boy, what a cycle game.

And that's the real thing. The NHL used to sell teams. The Habs, the Oilers, Penguins. Even if your team sucked, they were fun to watch. Then they decided that, for their financial stability, it was important that all teams were as tightly bunched together talent wise as possible. Now every team is fielding mediocre players for at least 30 minutes a night. What's the big marquee matchup you'd tell a casual fan to watch right now? Vegas vs. Boston? What's the sport's last champion in a big, hockey crazy market? Probably the Blackhawks which is going on 8 years now. The league can't on the one hand be like "It's crucial for the future of the sport that Carolina and Ottawa are on even terms with Toronto and New York" and then turn around and wonder where the fans are at when that's exactly what they get. 

I know people like to bag on Bettman and, believe me, I'm blaming him for the whole trajectory of the sport here but he's smart enough to know to hire a young and hip marketing firm. I just don't think they can come back with anything meaningful given what they're trying to make appealing. NFTs are stupid, sure, but that reeks of scraping the bottom of a well scraped barrel.
General NHL News & Views / Re: 2023-24 NHL Thread
November 15, 2023, 01:29:19 PM
Quote from: herman on November 15, 2023, 12:27:44 PM
Quote from: Nik on November 15, 2023, 11:54:31 AMYes, they probably need to stop tripping over their own genitals

It is very good to see you still around, Nik. I chortled into my lunch very hard.

It is funny how not being able to swear forces you to say somethings that, somehow, sound dirtier than the alternative.