DALE TALLON DODGING THE CHOPPING BLOCK

by Ron Spence

Dale Tallon was in the news at the beginning of the 2008-09 season, and he’s back in the news in the crazy season.

“Chicago may have failed to provide a number of its players with a completed copy of the Qualifying Offer notice referenced in Article 10.2 (a) of the CBA (i.e. Exhibit 19),” NHL Players’ Association Executive Director Paul Kelly wrote. “The NHLPA has requested further information from the league and the club regarding this matter.”

 

*****

In mid-October, Tallon fired Chicago’s coach Denis Savard, and some pundits gave him a warning.

They had noted a power shift in the Blackhawks’ organization.

talonfired

“The most qualified person in the organization to take over the hockey operations is senior adviser Scotty Bowman, who has forgotten more about the game than most general managers remember. At 75 years of age, however, he doesn’t want to be part of the daily grind again. But what about his Stan Bowman, his son? Stan is in his eighth season with the team and second as assistant general manager. Who better to groom him for the job than his father and the best hockey mind ever?

More than one team official called the dismissal [of Savard] an “organizational decision.” It was more like an organization of one person, because Scotty Bowman had his fingerprints all over it. For the record, Bowman joined the organization as a senior adviser in late July, but he had been a regular at the United Center since late last season. And, no, he wasn’t there to visit his son and sample the pregame buffet, either. While Tallon called it “a tough decision” for him personally, it’s safe to say that Bowman had no such problems.

As for Tallon, it might be wise for him to stay out of the spotlight before he gets burned.”

cont.

The most qualified person in the organization to take over the hockey operations is senior adviser Scotty Bowman, who has forgotten more about the game than most general managers remember. At 75 years of age, however, he doesn’t want to be part of the daily grind again. But what about his Stan Bowman, his son? Stan is in his eighth season with the team and second as assistant general manager. Who better to groom him for the job than his father and the best hockey mind ever?
More than one team official called the dismissal [of Savard] an “organizational decision.” It was more like an organization of one person, because Scotty Bowman had his fingerprints all over it. For the record, Bowman joined the organization as a senior adviser in late July, but he had been a regular at the United Center since late last season. And, no, he wasn’t there to visit his son and sample the pregame buffet, either. While Tallon called it “a tough decision” for him personally, it’s safe to say that Bowman had no such problems.
As for Tallon, it might be wise for him to stay out of the spotlight before he gets burned

tallonmiddle

talon2

bowman

“Bowman is a puppet master who has exactly the kind of credibility and cachet that new Hawks president John McDonough loves.

 

So, you have to believe that the other thing Bowman told McDonough and Wirtz is that you need a general manager who can identify talent. Tallon has drafted some good young kids, but not enough to get the Hawks to the playoffs.

 

Tallon’s next. He has to be.”

chicagosports.chicagotribune.com

 

*****

“We have an obligation to Blackhawks fans,” McDonough said,  “we have an obligation to the city of Chicago [and] we have an obligation to Rocky Wirtz to make sure we keep on building this. Dale’s obligation is to put together a winning team.”

The Blackhawks’ president was speaking just after the Savard dismissal.

Talon responded: “I can handle it. That’s what we’re in this business for. As John has said, this is a big boys table, a big boys club. We’re here to win. I’m going to give it my all.”

All Tallon had to do, was win, people said.

“The smart money says that,” wrote Lawdewski, “in order for Tallon to save his job, the Blackhawks will not only will have to make the playoffs for the first time in 11 seasons, but it will have to be competitive when it gets there.”

Chicago was beaten, of course, by the formidable Red Wings, but had a very respectable post-season – in beating the Flames and Canucks. 

Tallon then built on this good season by signing free agents Marian Hossa and John Madden. 

“…the Hawks got stronger,” wrote Len Ziehm,  “and – perhaps just as important — the Wings got weaker.”

There was no way that Tallon would be the next Blackhawks person fired.


 

*****

“I’m held accountable right now,” Tallon said. “I’m accountable every day, and I’m accountable for this decision as well. We’re going to move forward, and we’re going to get the job done.”

Tallon said this at the time of the Savard firing, and he’s being held accountable once again.

The NHL is investigating Chicago’s late notices – mailed to the players – and it’s possible that an arbitrator’s ruling will be needed to settle the matter should the NHLPA file a grievance.

But, a grievance could be the least of Tallon’s worries.

He might have enemies working against him from within.

Comcast’s Josh Mora wrote that “someone is trying to embarrass Dale Tallon by letting this leak out.”

rumourscsnchicago.com

 

Mora suggests that: “the possible scenarios and motivations [could be] an agent who was recently burned by the Blackhawks…an agent of one of the affected RFA’s….or a representative of one of the Hawks’ rivals….”

But, he also speculates that:

“It could be someone within the organization who has his eyes on the GM job, or who wants someone different in the GM job. 

All I can say here is that I hope not.

But I think it’s a plausible scenario.”

It seems that Dale Tallon’s head is always near the chopping block. 

Advertisements

One response to “DALE TALLON DODGING THE CHOPPING BLOCK

  1. Pingback: THE BOWMANS ARE CHICAGO’S NEW BORGIA FAMILY « CrashingTheGoalie

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s