From Near Glory To Bloody Gory. A Cautionary Story?
When last season came to an end, we all knew the team was well and committed to the rebuilding process. We, as a fan base, had accepted the trading of some long time players (Fisher and Kelly) and though not enjoying post season play, with visions of the Stanley Cup running through our collective minds, we did seriously anticipate the up-coming draft, and the exercising of the teams many picks.
We knew it would be a long road ahead, but we had some other teams to look to for encouragement; Chicago, Edmonton and the LA Kings.
Chicago is the epitome of making a rebuild pay quick dividends, Edmonton has been a great team to watch for years, and will soon come to the front of the pack once their prospects come to fruition. LA looked ready to make the leap, were just a player away from taking that next big step, after years of development patience, from both the fans and management.
Then they did it, Schenn, a supposed blue-chip prospect traded for Richards, a supposed blue-chip post-season performer. Before the season began we all looked enviously at LA, a team on the verge of breaking out…then, nothing. Sure, there was the hold-out of Doughty, which no doubt provided both distraction and an on ice impact (assuming his slow production is a result of missing camp), but nobody expected the team to be worse than before the trade to get over the top.
This is the scary side of the re-build, what if it doesn’t work? Yeah, the Chicago story is awesome…but the NYI story is not.
Only time will tell.