Dose of Reality #44

April 19, 2007

The Reign of Error is over. (Thank you, James Mirtle for that wonderful line!) J-Mac fired D-Mac. Daimler-Benz forecasts sales drop in the Columbus area. Remax is now hiring additional agents in anticipation of increased business activity in Central Ohio.

I would not be truthful if I didn’t admit to being ecstatic. I have been fired a few times in my life and I never like to see it happen to others, but believe me Doug, you will be a stronger person because of this. More importantly, many of us will be better off because of your absence. Except for the local luxury car dealers.

Until I know more, any comments I make on how MacLean was dismissed would be pointless. Sure, at this moment I believe that MacLean went into yesterday’s meeting thinking he had a chance to remain in a position of authority with the organization. I also know some of the people who sat in that meeting and I know one of them has been unhappy for some time. At this time, the only thing I want to say about that meeting is that the owners are people who earned their fortunes, men who also have egos, and they expect results from their employees. If Doug thought he was going to walk in with a smile and a shoeshine and do another sales job, he was badly mistaken.

With MacLean out, the team has a lot of work to do that they should have started as soon as the door closed when he left the room. The team will be competing with Phoenix for a new GM, and possibly Atlanta, Edmonton, and Toronto. The NHL Draft is two months away and the Jackets have nobody managing that process at this time. So the organization has to move fast.

After the General Manager is hired, someone with a strong disinfectant ought to call a meeting of the team scouting department and clean it out. Tell this group that they no longer have to look for ex-Florida Panthers to stock the team. PEI is a nice place to visit, but not necessarily a resource of NHL talent.

I will have more to say about this after I make a few calls and gather more information. But wake up, CBJ hockey fans, it was only a dream. The long nightmare is over. Of course, it will be another season before the New Guy can change things, but you get a mulligan on the last six seasons.

-Truth Serum


  1. Time for the ownership group to pull out the checkbook again…

    Jim Nill…Jim Nill…Jim Nill

  2. At first glance, I’d second that motion.

    But if pressed, I’d have to honestly say I don’t know enough about the potential candidates to have an informed opinion.

    Should be an interesting search.

  3. I have ranted over the years how poor the Jackets have drafted save Rick Nash and unfortunately the biggest victim is Alex Picard who will probably miss all of next season with torn ACL and MCL in his left knee. Picard should never have been drafted in the 8th overall spot and the numbers prove me right. In fact I always maintain that the Jackets drafted the wrong Alex Picard who plays for the Philly Flyers as a defenceman and has far superior numbers with this team. Regardless, this has been the legacy of Doug MacLean.
    Nik Zherdev is a mess, Pascal LeClaire is still not very fit or healed, Gilbert Brule should have played junior last season and Resty Klesla may be finally good enough to be a regular 3/4 rearguard on a decent NHL team. I’m still upset at the aquisition of Federov at 6.01 mil/season. Brian Burke is still dancing in the halls of the Honda Centre in Anaheim counting the money he saved with that salary dump. Francois Beachemin has worked out pretty darn well too and Todd Marchant was an excellant waiver pick up as well.
    We are all great at spending other people’s money and I have to say that Doug Maclean takes the cake having cost Mr. MacConnell hundreds of millions of dollars over the past nine years in Columbus. But even wealthy people having a boiling point and last evening Mr. MacConnell and the three minority partners did the right thing and put an end to this charade. I nominate Steve Tambellini of the Vancouver Canucks as the next G.M. He’s a keeper. Over and out.

  4. Tambellini or Nill would be fantastic picks for the next GM, but I think Don Maloney would actually be a an extermely good (and probably less heavily contested!) choice. Remember that Detroit wrote Nill one hell of a big check the last time they heard Columbus wanted to talk to him, and with the year they’ve had, I can’t see Vancouver giving up Tambellini without a nasty fight.

  5. Adam Foote-GREAT
    Sergei Federov-GREAT
    Anson Carter-GREAT
    Nikolai Zherdev-GREAT
    Young Team-GREAT

    FF through losing season…

    Adam Foote-Old, His Fires Out
    Sergei Federov-Old, His Fires Out
    Anson Carter-El Busto
    Nikolai Zherdev-Lazy, Doesn’t work
    Young Team-Poorly Put Together

    It seems to me, just a stupid NOB, that our hindsight becomes foresight when it comes to Hockey. we expect our GM’s to be perfect, we laud their deals initially, then throw them under the bus when they don’t work out. We preach patience (Archives form ’06 call for a 1-3 transition to winning with the current team), then cast stones when things don’t work out as we liked.

    Did we forget that McLean won a cup? Do we realize we are probably going to hire someone that another team fired? Have we ALWAYS thought McLean was a boob, or was our opinion formed over the course of 6 torturous seasons? Are we looking for a scapegoat? Did we just scape him? Are we unwilling to acknowledge the excitement McLean brought to Columbus. Do we REALLY think that he doesn’t know how to build a winner? There weren’t any extenuating circumstances? Are wins and losses the only thing that matters? Is it always upper management, and never the players? Did we expect McLean to know that most of the Boobjackets would mail it in night after night?

    Having been in a situation in my line of work where I was hit with “extenuating circumstances” that made me look like an incapable jackass on a daily basis, perhaps I have a little more compassion. Sometimes all the right moves go all the wrong ways.

    NEWSFLASH! This isn’t Atlanta, or Nashville, or Minnesota. Circumstances are different, expectations are different, LUCK is different.

    Put me in the category of fans who wanted nothing more than to see Doug McLean have a chance to see his vision become a success. 9 years of hard work, unquestioned devotion to the city of Columbus. Fans who still think he could have done so. Fans who think he got a raw deal, and won’t feel right if the team, HIS team, wins next year and he is forgotten about.

    You got your witch, folks! Cogratulations…

  6. NOB,

    It’s always nastiest right after the execution. Time will soften the edges of MacLean’s tenure.

    First, MacLean never won a Cup. He got to the finals with Florida in ’96, but was swept by the Avalanche.

    I think you have some valid points, but the one I’d like to address here is this: you asked if it’s always upper management, and never the players?

    It’s highly unlikely that MacLean made any personnel moves expecting those players to perform poorly. He’s not stupid, to be sure. But it was noted quite well at Dispatch.com today in a few articles that MacLean was always looking for the quick fix and never took the time to develop a team in a patient fashion. Draft picks and young players were rushed to action, while free agents and trade acquisitions were almost without fail asked to play above their talent level.

    There have been a number of players who have underperformed, and on whom some of the blame for lack of success can be placed. But you can’t fire 22 players and start from scratch. You can fire a General Manager who has been responsible for bringing those players to Columbus.

    If the Jackets have a better season next year and make the playoffs with likely a very similar team to this year, will it be easy to say MacLean got a raw deal? Undoubtedly. And in my opinion, not completely unfairly.

    But the fact remains that in all sports, when things aren’t going well with a franchise that one of two people are likely to pay with their jobs. The head coach or the general manager. We’ve already seen three coaches leave the Columbus bench, but the man upstairs has been the same through it all.

    Is firing MacLean the easy fix right now? Yes. Is it the right one? A lot of people (admittedly, myself included) think so, but only time will tell.

    For what it’s worth, you might check out the following websites in the sidebar: Tom Benjamin, James Mirtle, and Hockey Rants. Do a search on their site for Doug MacLean and see what comes up. It’s not just Bluejacket fans who think MacLean has been a bust.

    It’s funny you mentioned the witch at the end of your comment… it’s going to be part of my next post.

    Thanks for stopping by, and don’t let my niece grow up to be a Red Wings fan!

  7. Oh sure, bring up FACTS to refute my points! (Sorry, thought Mac won a cup with Florida. Alas, my hockey knowledge is somewhat limited).

    ‘Twill be interesting to see what the future brings in Columbus…

    And don’t worry, DONOB won’t grow up to be a Wings fan, she’ll be too busy practicing her Bassoon and rooting for the Bucks, Boobjackets, Tigers, and Browns to worry about tHTUN!

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