Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Who Is To Blame?

Sabres fans were frustrated yet again in this 2013 season after another rough loss to the Ottawa Senators. They're  currently in 14th in the Eastern Conference and in the bottom 5 of the entire NHL. There has been a debate amongst all Buffalo hockey fans. Who is to blame? Is it the players, who look great on paper but are not playing to their potential. Or is it the coach, who is having trouble motivating his youth to playing to their full potential.
     Players have slumps. They hit rough patches in their careers. Players like Stafford, Myers, Leopold, Foligno, and Grigorenko are not playing to heir full potential. Ennis at times did show a spark, but he needs to do it consistently to be a successful second line centre.
     It seems like we were having this discussion last year on the team. While they showed some bright spots last year, the team still failed to win when they absolutely needed to. Myers, Stafford, and other players were not delivering last year when the Sabres were struggling, and the same thing is happening this year. Hockey is a team sport. You win as a team and you lose as a team. You cant point fingers at one player for a loss because several factors contribute to a loss.
     This has me questioning on what is going on behind the bench. The coaching remains consistent and the play is still awful. There have been sparks in this season and last season. For example,  Buffalo was brilliant last March when they were trying to make the push to playoffs. This year they were great against Philadelphia, and they did look good against Boston (still had no idea where that came from). Yes there are leaders on the team that are supposed to motivate their players, but the final voice needs to come from the coach.
     Coaching is the key to winning. There is a lot of great young talent on this team. The players just need change. A new system, a new game plan, new ideas, new techniques, a fresh start is needed to this organization. Buffalo fans have been very loyal and patient in Lindy Ruff, but the patience tank is running on empty for these fans. The team isn't winning and there have not really been signs of a huge turn around. The most logical idea the Sabres can do now is to address coaching first, then the players.

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