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Category: Drop The Gloves

Drop The Gloves: Don’t Get Too High On Claude And Hitch

It’s been a while since we’ve had any disagreements worth a Drop The Gloves post, but that changed with the recent coaching news including Claude Julien, Ken Hitchcock, and Mike Modano. So here goes.

Yesterday we had our fourth NHL coach relieved of their duty. Not many were surprised when Boston axed Claude Julien or when St Louis canned Ken Hitchcock last week. Boston and St. Louis fans don’t accept underachievers and both organizations were forced to act. The result is now the Golden Knights have two Stanley Cup winning coaches to examine. Ken wrote about Julien’s dismissal yesterday and it’s potential impact to Las Vegas. He noted the former Bruins coach fitting George McPhee’s qualifications.

Experienced, a guy the hockey community knows, fits the culture, and someone who they do not have to evaluate. Julien also brings one more aspect that no one would ever admit is necessary, legitimacy.”  –Ken, (We’ve officially hit a new low quoting ourselves. Oh well.)

The one thing McPhee’s wishlist didn’t have was ‘Stanley Cup winning coach’ because they don’t grow on trees. Two are now available. But as established as Hitchcock and Julien are, neither are the right fit to coach on the Strip.

Trotz said Julien probably already has offers, which isn’t far-fetched for the previously longest-tenured coach in the league who has a Cup ring and one of the strongest resumes around. The expansion Vegas Golden Knights could have interest in Julien, Gallant, Hitchcock and Capuano since general manager George McPhee is believed to want experience behind the bench. –USA Today

Let’s start with Hitchcock. Anything but the perfect candidate. Hitch has coached since 1995, starting off in Dallas and leading them to a gift Stanley Cup in 1999. No Goal! In seven years with the Stars, Hitchcock led his team to five playoff appearances, three conference finals, and one Stanley Cup championship. From there Hitch had continuous success in the regular season but couldn’t get his teams deep. Only three times since 1999’s Cup victory, Hitchcock made the conference finals. Not a great track record in 16 seasons. Hitchcock’s .606 regular season winning percentage drops significantly to .512 in the postseason.

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Drop The Gloves: Vegas Should Pass On The Winter Classic At West Point

Usually Drop The Gloves gives a chance for the writers on this site to disagree with each other, but sometimes an article we write strikes a nerve in you, the readers. That’s what happened with my recent article titled “Las Vegas In Winter Classic 2018 At West Point? Yes Please.” Former Guest Post contributor Stephen J Sochor sent in his rebuttal, which is now the first ever Drop The Gloves Guest Post. So, here goes.

Playoff games that start past many kids, and some adults, bed times, NHL Awards voters who watch little Western Conference hockey, and Winter Classic Games that are hosted in cities west of the Mississippi River, this is the NHL and its lack of interest for those fans who follow teams in the West. Why would the Las Vegas Something Knights agree to extend an east coast road trip by at least 3 days, AND lose a home date in the process? This is so short-sighted, and it does nothing for most of the fans in Las Vegas, whether they are season ticket holders or not.

The Las Vegas franchise is another chapter in growing the game to areas that are not traditional hockey bases. Stealing a home date from the fans that support the team in order to give their opponent a game in their backyard is preposterous. Even if you don’t believe the team will be able to compete for a playoff game next year, why would The Creator be happy to give up millions in tickets, merchandise, and local tax revenue? If you do believe the team can compete for the playoffs in year one, then what is to gain by extending a road trip by half a week for a singular “road” game?

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Drop The Gloves: Eye Test Can’t Be The Ultimate Decider

Welcome to another version of’ favorite battle ground, “Drop The Gloves.” Where two writers on the site disagree with each other, state their points, and let you decide who’s right.

Last time we argued over the activity, or inactivity, of the Las Vegas organization in the first few weeks. Now, it’s time to Drop The Gloves on analytics. The original article by Dana titled “McPhee/McCrimmon Scheming At The Ivan Hlinka” is being challenged by Jason. Please vote in the poll at the bottom to choose your side.


There’s no guaranteed success when drafting a player. Missing on a draft selection sets a club way back in its progression. The time and money spent on prospects makes it imperative to get it right. That’s why GM George McPhee and Assistant GM Kelly McCrimmon are getting a head start at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.

But when I think of the Las Vegas franchise, I picture a team that needs to be creative. Being forced a roster of NHL pros doesn’t always work out. Having an outside chance of the number one pick in the amateur draft is another dilemma. McPhee may have to play “Moneypuck” to find other ways to gather talent. That’s why Dana was right about highlighting the Czech tournament. However, I respectfully disagree with my colleague on the scouting strategy Las Vegas should adopt.

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Drop The Gloves: Calm Down, Rome Wasn’t Built In 15 Days

From time to time we here at disagree. Usually we disagree with what others are saying about Las Vegas or our team, but every once in a while our staff of three disagree with each other. That’s why we created Drop The Gloves. When one of us reads an article on the site we disagree with, we’ll write a rebuttal article and let you guys decide who is right.

The first ever installment of Drop The Gloves is in response to yesterday’s article by Dana, who’s sentiment is shared by Ken. The article is titled “There Simply Hasn’t Been Enough Coming From The NHL’s Newest Team” At the bottom there’s a poll. Read that article and this one, vote, and then use the comments on either page to tell us why you’re on the side you’re on.


Everyone knows the old adage ‘Rome wasn’t build in a day.’ You probably heard it growing up when your Old Man was telling you to be patient. Or from your lame-ass English Professor suggesting you need to study more. It’s one of those phrases that annoys you, until you actually have to use it. Well, that’s where I stand today. My good bud Dana Lane posted an article yesterday about the lack of organizational news from the new Las Vegas franchise since the June 22nd expansion announcement. Dana’s gripe was with the team’s hidden presence over the past few weeks. Dana’s not expecting a GM, coach, and anthem singer announcement by the end of the next week but he’s clearly expecting more than we’ve gotten since June 22nd.

After Bettman’s announcement, the awards, the draft, and free agency frenzy, the league goes in hibernation. Hall of Famer Bob McKenzie annually retires to his private lake in Ontario for the summer, knowing he won’t have anything to cover for a month or so. Not much happens in the NHL during the summer except arbitration hearings and organizational decisions. This may be the best time for The Creator and his trusted staff, to interview potential general manager candidates, as well as examine desired NHL scouts. Scouting is a 12-month a year job, but Canadian, United States, and European leagues are on hiatus. Keep in mind, an NHL team needs multiple American, Canadian, European, and Amateur (Juniors/NCAA/High School) scouting teams. We’re talking about 15-20 scouts Vegas will need to hire. It takes time to make these important decisions. To me, the past few weeks of silence means nothing. I’m sure The Creator will be hiring a GM, and other support staff soon.

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