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Seattle kept pushing

2017-11-14 13:33
VANCOUVER – More than five years after he was fired as the ninth (and youngest) general manager in Canucks history, Dave Nonis is back home in B. Carlos Henderson Jersey .C. at the helm of the top team in the Eastern Conference. His tenure as the GM in Vancouver was all too brief. Though he led the Canucks to what was then a franchise record-shattering campaign in just his second season, Nonis was gone and replaced one year later. He had not been hired by new ownership, didnt align with their philosophies ultimately and paid the price for it. But did the man who helped construct a future Stanley Cup finalist, someone who pulled the trigger on a franchise-altering swap for Roberto Luongo, get a fair shake in Vancouver? "I dont think you can do that," said Nonis with no hint of bitterness amid a conversation with the Leaf Report on Friday afternoon. "Whether thats the case or not, I look back and say that the pieces that we left in place were very important pieces to the success of the team. If you look at how they did for a long period after we were there they were very successful. So you take some pride in that. In terms of not getting a fair shake, I think theres a lot of people in our business that can say that. For me, Id rather look at what we left and how well they performed." Nonis was promoted to the top job with the Canucks in 2004 – he was 37 at the time – replacing boss and close friend Brian Burke for the first time. Building on the foundations he and Burke had already worked to establish in years prior, Nonis would draft future All-Star Alex Edler and future No. 1 goalie Cory Schneider. He would hire future Jack Adams winner Alain Vigneault. Hed add Willie Mitchell via free agency, a looming mainstay on the blue-line. He would sign the Sedin twins, Ryan Kesler and Sami Salo to respectable, cap-friendly deals. And most notable of all, he would complete one of the most lopsided trades in NHL history, snatching Luongo from Florida. "I think that we felt we were going in the right direction," the Burnaby, B.C. native said. Though they would fall just shy of the playoffs in his first season – he was actually promoted prior to the 2004-05 lockout – the Canucks would shatter franchise records the next year, totaling 49 wins and 105 points. They were ousted in the second round by the eventual Cup champion Ducks, a squad led by current Leafs coach Randy Carlyle, but were clearly moving in the right direction. Year No. 3 though brought with it much frustration for Nonis and the Vancouver faithful. Ravaged by injuries, most notably on defence, the Canucks would limp to the finish line and miss out on the postseason by three points for the second time in three seasons. Rather than salvage the season (and ultimately his job) with short-term fixes via trade, Nonis declined, refusing to mortgage the foundations of what would be a prized future. It is believed that a trade for then-Lightning star Brad Richards was there to be had, a deal that would have cost Vancouver an embarrassment of young riches, Schneider prominently among them. Nonis refused to comment on the matter, but its evident from history that he declined, unwilling to hurt the teams future for the sake of his own job. "If you wouldve moved pieces, good young pieces, just to try and squeak in, that team never wouldve had a chance to win," he said. "If your ultimate goal is to try to win you have to be able to be patient and not have knee-jerk reactions to problems." Nonis would be fired for his efforts nine days after the season concluded. Springing for a leader of his own choosing, new owner Francesco Aquilini would select Mike Gillis nine days after his predecessor had been let go. Just as he predicted in the hours after his firing, the Canucks would go on to great things in the years that followed. They would finish with 100-plus points in four straight seasons after his dismissal, reaching the Cup Final in 2011. "The pieces that were there were young and stable and improving and then if things went well they would have a chance and thats how it played out," Nonis said. Now holding his second general manager gig in Toronto – he signed a new five-year deal in the summer at the urging of MLSE President Tim Leiweke – Nonis says the experience in Vancouver, which began in 1990, ultimately proved beneficial. "Youre never going to make all the right decisions – I definitely didnt make all the right ones when I was in Vancouver," he said. "But I think you learn [that] if you think youre going in the right direction, that the blueprint you have in place makes sense, then you have to have the will to follow it through. I believe thats the case for all teams that are competitive. Very few teams that are competitive in our league just fall on the GMs lap." Struck by the patience of his first boss with the Canucks, Pat Quinn, Nonis would glean additional tips of the trade from those around him in the ensuing years – "theres a lot of people in this league that are very good at what they do and have done a better job than Ive ever done" – including Burke during stints in Anaheim and Toronto. He would take note of what others around the league had done, how contenders in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Chicago and St. Louis were built. He saw how theyd establish a foundation of core players and then allow that core to grow and eventually win together. "You can count a lot of Stanley Cups on those teams," Nonis said. Though the Leafs have the early blocks of such a core – after trades for Phaneuf, Kessel, van Riemsdyk, Lupul, Bernier and Gardiner as well as the drafting of Kadri and Rielly among others – the team has not yet reached Noniss preferred destination. What he wants is continued progress in a positive direction, with his Leafs leading the Eastern Conference entering a Saturday affair with the Canucks. "We think its going the right way," said Nonis, at the helm when the club snapped a nine-year playoff drought last spring. "Were not where we need to be, but were a lot better than we were. The reserve list is stronger than it was. Our farm team is younger and still remaining competitive. Theres a lot of good things happening, but theres still a lot of room for improvement. I dont think we could stand up and said that were close to done. We have a lot of work yet to do and if we want to get to be one of those elite teams. I wouldnt say were a long way away, but we definitely need to continue to improve and add the pieces that those upper-echelon teams have." The early returns from his first offseason as Leafs general manager have been positive, most notably in the performance of 27-year-old Dave Bolland and 25-year-old Jonathan Bernier, both acquired via trade this past summer. David Clarkson, Noniss pricey first free agent signing, has played just four games – after serving a 10-game suspension – but has offered hints of the edge and personality he promised to bring after years in New Jersey. For whatever success the Leafs achieve this season you can be sure that Nonis will not attempt to fast-forward the process with short-sighted, short-term fixes. Its why hes not inclined to move first round picks or young players for aging talent. His blueprint features a young core that will take steps together, progressing as the Canucks eventually did after his dismissal. "If youre a deep enough team you can trade away a top prospect and not even feel it then youve done a really good job of building your reserve list and your farm system and you can move those prospects for pieces that might put you over the top," said Nonis. "Were not there yet. We need to continue to add those pieces so I wouldnt say we would never move a first round pick or a young player, but if we do at least at this stage of our development itll be for another young player; its not going to be for an older player." Nonis will enter Rogers Arena on Saturday afternoon full of pride, both for what was eventually accomplished in Vancouver and the promise on the horizon in Toronto. "Progress is the most important word," Nonis said. "If you continue to show progress year after year eventually youre going to put yourself in a pretty good position." Shaquil Barrett Jersey .Tatjana Haenni, FIFAs head of womens competitions, told a FIFA Live Your Goals Tour news conference Friday that the artificial turf is being tested to make sure it meets standards. Jake Butt Jersey . Bobrovsky posted a 2-0-1 record with a 1.58 goals-against average and .950 save percentage to help the Blue Jackets (35-26-6) gain five of a possible six points last week. He capped the week by making 32 saves and stopping 2-of-4 shootout attempts in a 2-1 win over the Minnesota Wild on Saturday.Santa Clara, CA - Yannick Djalos goal in the 42nd minute was the difference as the San Jose Earthquakes claimed a 1-0 win over Seattle Sounders FC in the inaugural event at Levis Stadium on Saturday. Djalos goal came after a nice ball over the top from Chris Wondolowski, while San Jose held off a second-half surge from Seattle to collect its second successive win. The result leaves Seattle just two points clear at the top of the Western Conference ahead of second-place Real Salt Lake, while the Sounders have now lost three times in their last four fixtures. Djalo was a handful for Seattle for much of the match and he went close with a shot from the top of the area in the fifth minute before netting the games lone goal a few minutes prior to halftime. Wondolowski started the move by chipping a ball in behind the Seattle defense from midfield that allowed Djalo to track it down and roll it underneath on- rushing goalkeeper Stefan Frei. Terrell Davis Jersey. Frei had to scramble to keep out a right-wing cross from Djalo in the second half that nearly snuck inside the near post, while Djalo was played through the middle of the defense by Wondolowski in the 61st and curled a shot just wide of the left post. From there, the Sounders played the majority of the game in San Joses defensive third, but goalkeeper Jon Busch prevented the visitors from leaving the match with a point. The goalkeeper tipped a header from Kenny Cooper over the crossbar in the 68th before he needed to parry a well-struck free kick from 30 yards to safety off the foot of Seattles Gonzalo Pineda. Seattle kept pushing and nearly found the equalizer five minutes from time when a corner kick was driven to the middle of the penalty area for Chad Barrett to head past Busch, only for Wondolowski to clear the ball off the goal line, preserving the win. Cheap NFL Jerseys Cheap NFL Jerseys China Cheap Jerseys From China Cheap NFL Jerseys Authentic Wholesale Jerseys China Cheap NFL Jerseys China NFL Cheap Jerseys ' ' ' 
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