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

* Thanks, Kevin Lowe!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Non-live Todd McLellan press conference coverage

New San Jose Sharks head coach Todd McLellan answered questions 1-on-1 with reporters after the press conference earlier today. He spoke about taking advantage of the depth of talent in San Jose, that he has achieved about as much assistant coaching experience as you could possibly need before moving up to the head coaching position, that a number of factors have to fall into place to win a championship at any level, that a puck possession offense may be a little overstated, that he will try to establish more of a puck pursuit and puck recovery game, and that he would like to encorporate the defense into the offense more.

His opening statment from the press conference, will work on a full transcript on Sharkspage:

"This is a special opportunity, there are only 30 of these positions available in the world. I feel very fortunate to be involved with one of if not the top organizations in the National Hockey League. I am very excited about it. There are some very good things that have happened here in the San Jose Sharks organization. You don't win close to 50 games a year by accident. There is an incredible amount of skill on this hockey team. If you combine the skill with the will, good things can happen. We look forward to doing that."

"It is my job as the coach to push this team, push them hard. Push them outside their comfort zone, and get them doing things that they may not be comforable doing but while I am doing that make sure they enjoy the process. That is the only way championship teams evolve. I look forward to that opportunity and can not wait for it to start."

If anyone has a link to the full press conference video or audio, add it in the comments section. The AP's Greg Beacham, Tony Khing of the San Jose Sharks, and a KLIV reporter asked the questions in the above 1-on-1 clip.

- Martin Brodeur was awarded the Vezina Trophy earlier today. It is hard to overly debate the selection, but it appears as if many of the NHL general managers put their eggs in the reputation and save percentage basket. If you look at wins, goals against average, and strength of conference or even strength of division, then Nabokov should have been the clear winner. There should be no debate that three of the best four NHL teams reside in the Pacific Division, and the fourth won the Stanley Cup. It was a brief aside on the blog at the time, but the start of the Sharks monster February road trip began with rocky losses to the Rangers, Islanders, and New Jersey. Dropping three games on the big east coast stage probably solidified Brodeur's dominance among a few general managers.


RudyKelly said...

I thought Brodeur deserved to win because the Sharks allowed the 2nd fewest shots on goal and Nabokov only managed a .910 SV%. You could make the argument that the Sharks only allowed tough shots, but it seems more likely that their defense was responsible for the Sharks' low goal total. He's more Osgood than Hasek, let's put it that way.

jamestobrien said...

I agree with Rudy.

It's a nature versus nurture question, really. Nabokov faced tougher competition, but Brodeur had an inferior team in front of him.

The Devils have been devoured by free agency, but they still make it into the playoffs quite comfortably because of their system. But their system would be nothing without Marty Brodeur.

With all due respect to Paul Martin, the Devils defense is a far cry from their quasi-dynasty days.

And, although the Eastern Conference is by NO MEANS close to the West, the Atlantic is the closest thing in the East to the Pacific Division:

The Penguins were the second seed and got to the Finals. The Rangers and Devils also made the playoffs as the 4th and 5th seeds. (The Islanders kind of suck, but are semi-competitive because of Ted Nolan)

There would have been nothing wrong with Nabokov winning the Vezina, but when there's a tossup for an award sometimes the bigger name gets it.

And, in this case, I think Brodeur deserved it. Maybe next year, Nabby.

Earl Sleek said...

I don't know who deserves the Vezina anymore; it's a trophy that seemingly has lost its meaning.

I will say, though, that if winning the Vezina requires that a goalie see a ton of rubber and play nearly every single game, I'm hoping the Vezina stays way clear of Anaheim in the future. I'd rather have a balanced team than a goalie regularly hung out to dry.

Prediction: If the Vezina Trophy gets decided like it was this year, no future Vezina Trophy winner will win a Stanley Cup in the same year. By definition, he'd probably be too worn out to be effective in the playoffs.

Ian said...

I don't like to cry "East Coast Bias!" too often, but take a look at the last 26 Vezina winners (ie with the current criteria):
-4 Western Conference goalies (a horrendous 0.154 winning percentage)
-Of those 4, 2 are for Ed Belfour with the Hawks. 1 for Grant Fuhr with the Oilers. 1 for Miikka Kiprusoff with the Flames.

It appears that it's way tough to win that award if you're in the West, but if you're in the Pacific, you're SOL.

Oh well. Like Sleek, I'd rather have the Vezina performance than the hardware.

Ian said...

Rudy, the criteria you use as the reason Nabby shouldn't get the Vezina over Brodeur was the exact reason why Brodeur won his previous Vezinas: wins and GAA, not save percentage. When the Devils had a stacked defense Brodeur won, despite some people claiming he shouldn't have.

Oh how the worm turns.

Earl Sleek said...

exact reason why Brodeur won his previous Vezinas: wins and GAA, not save percentage.

And that's partially what puzzles me about the award criteria. It seems to change year-to-year, seemingly in order to get Brodeur to win the thing.

Oh well. I'll just stick to the California typical response: whatever.

PJ Swenson said...

Reputation, not staying up to watch West Coast games, and the lack of media coverage had as much to do with this award as wins, GAA, and save percentage.