Monday, October 8, 2012

Looking Back to Look Forward

You may have noticed that I have been using this bully pulpit to advocate (okay, agitate) for a serious pursuit of John Davidson to take over the Columbus Blue Jackets President position.  As putative historian for the CBJ by virtue of serious demand for blog content in the hockey doldrums of August last year, I thought I would remind Mr. McConnell how this whole President thing could play out in they eyes of history.

Doug MacLean, the original club president, GM, and lord of all he surveyed accomplished the major task of getting a hockey franchise established in a vacuum.  This is a significant accomplishment, and he was aided by a stalwart band of misfits in the inaugural year that came together as a team and played very entertaining hockey down the stretch.  In trying for the quick trip to the playoffs a la the Florida Panthers, Doug was a bit too successful, keeping us out of the top 2 or 3 draft slots with the exception of the Nash selection.  Nonetheless, by the end of his tenure, a hockey team was solidly on the ground, and you say from a big picture viewpoint, 'mission accomplished'!

There came a time when change was needed, and Doug needed to move on for the good of the organization.    A new GM was needed to pair with the hall of fame coach that had been hired.  The talent pool of upper level management at Worthington Industries was raided to produce Mike Priest, a president whose charge was to get the business end of the CBJ's operations in order.  He succeeded very well at this task, as is evidenced by the fact the the organization is no longer paying to keep up Nationwide, even though we have this god-forsaken lockout on. (%$#*&@$^%#**!!!!!)  One could well look at Mike Priest's tenure, ignoring the problems when he dabbled in hockey operations, and say 'mission accomplished'!

Now, THE most pressing need of the organization, is the need to ice a winner.  Hire John Davidson, and you have taken a significant step in the right direction Mr. McConnell.  Perhaps in a few years you will be able to look down from your seat at a playoff game and think 'mission accomplished'.

The hiring of John Davidson fits a natural progression in the maturation of our hockey franchise.  Regardless of how the lockout ends, this is the move to make.  Did I mention you need someone to explain to the fans why the All-Star game got canceled?  Davidson might be pricey, but sometimes you get what you pay for, and this is an unparalleled opportunity to hire an accomplished, fan-friendly, face of the organization, and senior hockey executive.  History will be kind if this move is made.


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