Winning a championship in any professional sport gives you clout. It also gives you stability within an organization–at least a three year pass to do no wrong, more money, free dinners & if you’re a coach with a mustache in Chicago…It gives you legendary status. Just ask that money making advertising whore, Mike Ditka. To this day, that money hungry candy ass is still profiting off a Super Bowl title he won 26 years ago.
Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville is on a hall of fame path as a head coach in the NHL. The title he helped bring this city in 2010 proved his ability as a coach, and showed the Hawks were right in shoving Denis Savard into a Scottie Pippen role four games into the ’08-’09 season. Quenneville guided the Hawks to it’s first Stanley Cup since 1961, and it was assumed with a young core of talented players in tact that he would be safe in his job as long as he didn’t shit the bed and miss the playoffs.
But with Scotty Bowman’s massive ego overshadowing all things Hawks, and Stan Bowman eager to prove his worth and step out of his father’s shadow, dysfunction and ego are turning the Hawks into a reality show with “Mob Wives” style drama.
According to ESPN Chicago, the Hawks drama is turning into Quenneville’s side vs Bowman’s side. This is their version of Krause vs Jackson, Ozzie vs Kenny & Ditka vs McCaskey.
Marc Bergevin (a Quenneville guy) left for Montreal and assistant Mike Haviland (a Bowman guy) was fired by the coach as a way to show that his coaching staff will be determined by him, not the hockey Gods (Bowman’s). This move is Quenneville’s power play, which should eliminate any chance that a guy like Barry Smith (director of player development) will be sent to help coach the special teams that were so abysmal in the playoff loss to Phoenix.
Smith was essentially the mouthpiece for the Bowman’s. He might as well have had a notepad jotting down anything he perceived as negative to report to his superiors.
How amateur hour is this? This is a franchise that is determined to be the NHL’s standard when it comes to professionalism and winning, and here they are arguing over who gets the biggest room in the new house. It’s quite nauseating, and a problem that needs to be rectified if this team ever wants to hoist a cup again.
Is Patrick Kane a center? Not if you ask Quenneville, or other coaches around the league. But the boy wonder (Bowman) seems to think he is, and it’s creating a divide that is crippling Kaner’s game. Bowman believes having Kane at center is a better option than any 2nd line center that’s available via trade or free agency.
Quenneville doesn’t think the Hawks can win another cup with Kane in the middle. Bowman does. I don’t know about you, but I’ll side with the coach who has a cup in his trophy case and 624 regular season wins and 70+ playoff wins on his resume. But that’s just me.
To sustain success in pro sports, you need the front office and the coach to be on the same page. When they aren’t, agendas & egos become as important as winning games. Bowman vs Quenneville isn’t going away anytime soon, and it’s likely to overshadow any moves the team makes this summer. Once a toxic situation like this becomes public, all people will talk about is who will be the fall guy? There’s only one way to squash this reality TV silliness and that’s to win another Stanley Cup. Can it happen? It’s hard to imagine when two massive egos can’t agree on where to play one of the team’s core players. When you win a title, the disease of more can slowly take over and create egotistical monsters. Sadly, we’re starting to see that disease decay the foundation of a team that is still in it’s championship window.