Tallon’s claws not so Sharp

19May10

Dale Tallon is the right man for the Florida Panthers gm job.

Just ask Damien Cox.

Cox says Tallon got a raw deal in Chicago — fired in favour of special consultant Scott Bowman’s son Stan prior to this season.

Tallon, Cox correctly notes, inherited a 65-point Hawks team in 2005 and quickly turned it into one of the best young teams in the league. But, Cox notes, it didn’t hurt that the Hawks already had key players like Dustin Byfuglien, Brent Seabrook and Duncan Keith in place when Tallon assumed the job.

I don’t see where Tallon is such a genius. His first two years, the Hawks were awful — so awful, in fact, that they finished 29th in 2006-2007, won the draft lottery, and took Patrick Kane first overall.

It doesn’t take a genius to finish in the basement and select a sure-fire offensive superstar in the draft.

Further, the Hawks were so terrible in the first couple years of Tallon’s tenure in part because of some of his boneheaded moves. The Hawks signed 11 free agents in the summer of 2005 — journeymen like Jassen Cullimore and Jason Williams. These players were signed for far more than their market worth and the Hawks were dismal.

And how about some of Tallon’s free agent deals over the past couple years: signing Marian Hossa for 12 years, the mammoth  $7 million per season to Brian Campbell and the worst one of them all, Cristobal Huet for six million a year?

Dale Tallon inherited a team with some good pieces in place and put it into salary cap purgatory. The Hawks will have to shed some serious salary over the summer to stay under the cap, meaning a quality player like Kris Versteeg or Patrick Sharp will likely be dealt for no return.

Genius? More like diabolical madman.

The Panthers, a team that just can’t seem to get anything right, have once again missed the mark. I can’t wait to see the first overpriced free agent Tallon burdens them with.

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