Monday, October 20, 2008

Coaching merry-go-round

How many games before you cut a coach?

This is starting to look a bit ugly for Tampa Bay's Barry Melrose, isn't it?

Personally, I'd give a coach 20 games (out of the 82 in an NHL season). I think that's fairly reasonable. Which, typically, is mid- to late-November. If a team isn't going to get it by then, then they probably won't. I think that's a fair amount of time to try to get something going and still have time to maybe not sacrifice an entire season to do it.

While I did say that I thought it'd be a little rough at first, I didn't think it'd be like this. But then, that was really a more of a off the top of my head kind of comment since I haven't sat down and thought my way thru it at all. And it's not as if I've had any extended conversations about it with anyone, either, which might've been helpful for me.

The big question for the Lightning is, will the team be able to pull it together in time to save Barry Melrose's job? He doesn't seem like a bad coach, but it certainly hasn't been easy. While it's been mentioned that the schedule has worked against them, I'd have to disagree. Team chemistry is created by familiarity, and not always under stressful situations. And I think the same goes with learning a new system - it's about familiarity and knowing where you need to be.

So how much time do you give a new coach to establish himself?

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RJ said...

Normally I would agree with the 20 game range. But in this case, due to new owners, a plethora of new players and a new system, I would give Melrose 25-30. By then the season may be outta reach, but whatta gonna do? I don't think he will get the axe at all, the new owners love this guy, but under normal circumstances, he would be on a short leash after a start like this.