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Foote Faults

March 3, 2008

By now, everyone in the known hockey world of Central Ohio has an opinion on Adam Foote. He is either the biggest fraud who ever suited up for the CBJ or the most unappreciated athlete to play here. I have a few ideas, but what I wish is that the whole issue would just go away.

Adam Foote was paid a lot of money, by anyone’s standards, to play hockey here and to give 100%. The fact that he felt he didn’t want to be here without a new contract in place is a little disturbing. The best thing he could have done was to show the rest of the NHL that he still has the drive and talent of an elite NHL defenseman by leading the Blue Jackets to their best finish ever. He could point to the progress of the team and confidently say that he was one of the prime reasons the team improved. It would be hard to argue with him. Besides, he was paid $4.6 million to do this.

There is a claim that Foote said he would be a bad teammate if he didn’t get his way. I don’t know if he really said this, but this is very similar to an anonymous quote that The Dispatch ran last year when they piled on Nikolai Zherdev. Did they unwittingly reveal a secret?

If you side with Foote, you have to admit that he is taking a tremendous risk by going back to Colorado. The team is fighting for a playoff spot and battling low attendance. What if they don’t make the playoffs? Will they come to Foote and say, “You know, we really appreciate you coming here to help us make the playoffs and even though it didn’t work out, we’re going to give you a two year contract at $3.5 million per year just to say thanks.” I don’t know about you, but if I were an Avalanche fan watching the 2008 NHL Draft and see Columbus go to the podium a second time during the first round and I don’t even have a playoff memory, I might not be too happy. I might not like the fact that my team didn’t make the playoffs and is much older now.

Adam Foote did play better hockey this season with the Blue Jackets. He doesn’t have the numbers to show for it, but the team is doing better and he stopped taking as many stupid penalties like he did in previous years. He was insurance for the Rusty Klesla brain cramps and he gave them a lot of quality minutes for a 36 year-old.

I don’t know if he was a leader or a take charge guy. There is a difference and sometimes they can be the same person, but this team has been searching for a leader since it was formed. They had some guys who were capable of leadership before Foote, but Doug MacLean suffocated them. Foote probably did fill the vacuum in the dressing room, but who was there to challenge him?

If Foote is looking to go back to the past, he has to remember that even though he played on two Cup winners, he was not in the first pair of defensemen. Uwe Krupp and Sandis Ozolinsh were the guys on the first team and Ray Bourque and Rob Blake on the second team. Can Adam Foote and his ego accept a reduced role on this tour of duty with Colorado?

I am convinced that Foote was duped with empty promises by Doug MacLean to sign here. He probably held his nose and signed the contract. But the contract paid him $4.6 million and you can easily put up with some shortcomings with that amount of money. Colorado did take him for granted and would not match the MacLean offer.

He is gone now. Maybe he will be ready to participate in the entire training camp with Colorado, something he never got around to in Columbus. Maybe we will get a stud with his draft pick, maybe we won’t. I just hope he can take the booing if he comes back to Columbus to play.

-Truth Serum

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5 comments

  1. As an Avs fan I am completely biased, but I can’t think Adam Foote would ever say he wouldn’t give 100%. One thing is for sure, he is a leader, as he has already commanded the backline for our team. He’s barking directions and is paying dividends, so I would have a hard time saying he isn’t a take charge kind of guy.

    I have a soft spot for the Jackets (lived 2-years in Columbus) so I hope the draft pick they receive for him turns out. I will say in my analysis I thought the Foote deal was the riskiest one for the Avs, and not worth it if they don’t sign him.

    You have a good analysis here though, well said


  2. FYI:

    Found this over on TSN that contradicts the Dispatch report


  3. I don’t know if McKenzie contradicts the story or just offers a different viewpoint. Both Arace and Portzline are reporters at The Dispatch and thus subject to the rules and policies of journalism, but so is McKenzie.

    I really don’t think Foote is worth more than $2.5 million a season and I would not sign him to a multi-year contract. Adam is 36 and getting older. His style of play is not flashy and he is not one to conserve energy. Look at the PIM number of his.

    My main point is that I am glad that we got a #1 for him and that we have cap money freed up. Colorado now has to see if their gamble with Foote (and Forsberg) is going to payoff with a playoff round or two and increased attendance.

    Thanks for your comments. And I too lived in Denver for a short time and wish I could have stayed there.


  4. I’m really glad you wrote this, the media out of Columbus is absolutely ridiculous with this stuff. And, I agree they need to let it die. Great stuff as always Truth!


  5. […] trade deadline, I have been trying to ignore it to keep my opinion of my favorite player strong.  Truth Serum at End of the Bench had a great post on Foote, and also Bob McKenzie wrote a blog about the situation also.  I am […]



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