Takes and trash talk from both ALL sides of the NHL's most obscure PATHETIC* rivalry

* Thanks, Kevin Lowe!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Drew Remenda's Shark-Thoughts, now in Chen-Style!

(NOTE: The following post was penned by our own Mike Chen, who is battling his workplace's firewall filters and thus e-mailed me his post. Everything past here is pure Chen. --Sleek)

Drew Remenda was just on NHL Live on XM/NHL.com. A quick summary of what he said:

  • Jeremy Roenick was surprised at how quiet the Sharks bench was when he first came here. He asked Tim Hunter if that was how it always was and Hunter replied with "Yes, but they play with passion." JR begged to differ and began talking with the young guys to not treat the game as a job but enjoy and relish in being a pro athlete.

  • Joe Thornton is the acknowledged team leader on the ice (as the go-to guy) and off it (as the fun social dude) and no one, especially Patrick Marleau, has a problem with him being in that role.

  • The Sharks win because of Evgeni Nabokov and Thornton right now. Everyone else has underachieved (duh).

  • The team's play is represented by the way they've drafted -- very skilled, very quiet guys. Drew said that that's more or less the bed they made, and that it's really up to players like Mike Grier, JR, and Joe Thornton to change that. He also cited players like Curtis Brown, Marleau, Nabokov, and Kyle McLaren as the ones who have to help the quiet young guys like Marc-Edouard Vlasic become passionate players.

  • The issue of Marleau's play came up and I was really surprised at how candid Drew was. He said that the rift between Marleau and Ron Wilson still hasn't healed, despite what they say to the press. Doug Wilson has acted as the intermediary, but Drew says that Doug is leaving it to Marleau and Wilson to find a workable solution. A caller suggested taking the C off Marleau, and Drew's own personal thoughts (not speaking for Doug Wilson -- let's make that clear) is that doing that is a no-win situation because (a) it devalues Marleau if it ultimately leads to a trade (and that's a big IF -- he's NOT suggesting that or advocating that at all) and (b) it loses Patty from a player/coach perspective, though if you look at Dallas, Mike Modano seems to have shaken that off (that's my own input, not Drew's).

  • He doesn't anticipate a major shake-up, but if things don't appear to be trending up heading into January, that's when something may happen. However, he doesn't think it will be that way. He couldn't answer whether or not the team will show up in the playoffs, though. Apparently, the philosophy going into this is that it has to start and end with the players. I may be reading too much into this, but it sounds like that ultimately Ron Wilson has the support of his GM.
So, basically what you see is what you get is what we all suspected. And it also sounds like if the team turns it around, the signing of Jeremy Roenick may have been way more valuable off the ice than we all thought.


Megalodon said...

Taking away the C would be a meaningless gesture that couldn't do anything but hurt the team.

Marleau is obviously a fragile guy mentally, and an insult like taking away the C would send him into a Stuart Smalley-style shame-spiral until he's even LESS productive then he is now. We don't need that.

Mike said...

I don't know if I agree with your estimate of Marleau's mental fragility, but I agree with your first statement. It certainly wouldn't help anything to strip the C, especially if Joe is already recognized as a leader (or "the" leader).

Fact is, Marleau is so quiet, we have no idea if there's a steely resolve under there or a WATB. He's certainly not airing any dirty laundry in public, so I give the guy credit for that.

Patty (in Dallas) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patty (in Dallas) said...

...though if you look at Dallas, Mike Modano seems to have shaken that off

I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that the guy that did it is no longer around.

He was not happy about it last season at all, and I'm sure he was humiliated, but the fact that he and Morrow are such close friends helped, too. And from what we hear after Army was fired, the rest of the team was on Modano's side against Army.

So, if they were to strip Patty of his C, I'd bet it wouldn't bother just Patty.

Sqb. said...

Very informative post, Mike.

1) Re: Marleau. I'm glad Drew confirmed there's still a rift with Ron Wilson. IMO, the Sharks would not be in this situation (Marleau underachieving, team still lacking fire) if Doug had just fired RW after Detroit. That was the right time: he had brutally failed to adjust in the playoffs for the 2nd straight year. He had called out the captain in the press (I thought that was a sure sign!!).

2) Re: the "quiet" Sharks. The problem is that JR isn't the solution--he's just a signal. JR of old could crash and wreck and win playoff games alone. Now JR can only yell "GET SOME FIRE! OR AT LEAST GET AN AGITATOR!"

Clowe's absence really hurts here. None of the bottom 9 forwards "play with passion" regularly. And the top 2 forwards are so cool-headed...they might not even see the problem.

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised there was no mention by Drew of Rivet being one of the team's passionate players. He seems to get PO'd at the other Sharks at times. Which is a good thing IMO.