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A realistic analysis of Jim Benning's tenure so far

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Jim has done a lot that is really good as far as finding top talent in the draft. That is why some of us wanted him to focus on what he is good at. Stop stupid trades and just draft. Let the team build from within. He tried to force it and to do this they signed some silly contracts that have hamstrung them for a couple of years. 

I was hopping that they have learned from their mistakes . Schmidt , Hoglander and Chatfield have filled nicely for the losses. 

 

As far as cap issues I see another one coming next year. Lets say Demko turns into their number one this year and continues with his playoff run.  That means they will need to sign their 26 year old goal tender to a multi year deal. They may need to add 3 to 4 mil to their goal tending costs for next year. Holtby has a two year deal. It just complicates next year.

 

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9 hours ago, DownUndaCanuck said:

Everyone throwing Benning hate around but someone please give me a better option for this off-season? Expansiom draft and flat cap were everything.

Flat cap and covid isn't a valid excuse for me. If neither happened free agents like Toffoli would have asked more in term and money. If anything this should have been the opportunity for Benning to capitalize on the situation. 

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All I gotta say is, was it a high priority this off season to go after OEL? Most of the talk among this forum was how his contract would cripple this team. The idea of acquiring this player was never a good idea. Glad we never went through with the deal (he’s now injured) but it’s the time that he wasted in the days leading up to free agency. That was his time and window to get creative with dumping salary to retain Tofu and possibly others. But now after hearing his interview yesterday and used “ran out of time”as a justification is not acceptable. We all pay attention to our time management in our jobs because say I come into work late and say “I ran out of time” to your boss, is he going to give you a pass?

 

I will say that Benning has been our best Drafter (wither that’s him or Brackett remains to be seen) this team had ever had. Sure he’s had his misses with a few but what GM hasn’t. That said, it’s getting harder and harder to have this guys back when he has made self inflicted mistakes. As horrible for me to say this because a few years ago I was laughing at the position that Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli put the team in with all the bad contracts, we aren’t far off from them. And that’s a sad reality that I think it’s hard for fans to deny. 
 

I will always have the best interests for this team but it’s hard to justify the position we are in this season. 

Edited by EP Phone Home
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2 minutes ago, EP Phone Home said:

All I gotta say is was it a high priority this off season to go after OEL. Most of the talk among this forum was how his contract would cripple this team. The idea of acquiring this player was never a good idea. Glad we never went through with the deal (he’s now injured) but it’s the time that he wasted in the days leading up to free agency. That was his time and window to get creative with dumping salary to retain Tofu and possibly others. But now after hearing his interview yesterday and used “ran out of time”as a justification is not acceptable. We all pay attention to our time management in our jobs because say I come into work late and say “I ran out of time” to your boss, is he going to give you a pass?

 

I will say that Benning has been our best Drafter (wither that’s him or Brackett remains to be seen) this team had ever had. Sure he’s had his misses with a few but what GM hasn’t. That said, it’s getting harder and harder to have this guys back when he has made self inflicted mistakes. As horrible for me to say this because a few years ago I was laughing at the position that Oilers GM Peter Chiarelli put the team in with all the bad contracts, we aren’t far off from them. And that’s a sad reality that I think it’s hard for fans to deny. 
 

I will always have the best interests for this team but it’s hard to justify the position we are in this season. 

Yeah but we are getting out of our bad contract issues starting this off season unlike the Oilers. Also the Lu recapture and all the rookie bonuses doesn't help either.

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9 hours ago, DownUndaCanuck said:

Everyone throwing Benning hate around but someone please give me a better option for this off-season? Expansiom draft and flat cap were everything.

 

1 - Markstrom. Simply couldn't have stayed. JB had to decide between Marky and Demko because of the ED and Marky wanted to be protected. Marky is a top-5 goalie right now, yes, but for how long, a couple more seasons? JB went with Demko (and rightly so, fits our young core better) so had to make the hard decision to let Markstrom walk. 6x6 contract will be brutal at the end of the contract which is likely when our players will be in their prime and JB knows he doesn't want another Eriksson contract. What's the other option, give Marky 6x6 and let Seattle take Demko? Much worse.

 

2 - Tanev. This hurts, sure, but 4.5x5 for a 30 year old often-injured defenceman is a big gamble. He's a top 5 shutdown defenceman in the league, no doubt about it, but again this contract will surely not age well. JB made a gamble and must have known about Schmidt, because Schmidt is younger, better offensively and more rounded than Tanev. Before the start of the season I'd have said Schmidt was the better defenceman (but has not played as he has in Washington and Vegas and Tanev has been brilliant). Again, the key here is longevity and common sense tells us that Schmidt will outlast Tanev (although you never know). Chris has looked good but he's one or two injuries away from really starting to slow down, JB is looking long-term here whereas none of the fans can seem to. That's why he's the GM, making the unpopular decisions for the team's future.

 

3 - Toffoli. Ouch, this one stings, but of course it does. Toffoli is in his prime and has a few good years of 30+ goal scoring to do. 4x4 contract is a bargain, he's a top line winger on any team. Yes, I wanted Toffoli back, but JB is right in saying that we don't need offence. We're scoring buckets of goals but our defence is the problem and Toffoli scoring a goal per game wouldn't have helped us out this season anyway. Fans argue we should have just "moved money out" as if that's the easiest thing in the world - not in a flat Covid cap where we're seeing all sorts of players waived. Personally I would have even tried trading Pearson for a pick to squeeze him in and swap Pearson for Toffoli, of course ideally Roussel/Virtanen would be replaced by Toffoli but clearly no one was biting (and why would they on 5M tied up by two 13th forwards). Regardless, we don't really need offence, as tasty as it looks. JB made the hard decision here (or was forced into it by not being able to clear cap) but in the scheme of our team it's not as important as it seems.

 

4 - Stecher and Leivo. Replaced easily by Hamonic and Hoglander.

 

Have to defend JB on all fronts here and if he had the off-season again, would do it all again. If anyone objects, tell me what he could have done differently? Yes, it's the GM's job to deal with contracts better and move money out, but how is he supposed to predict a pandemic that drops the cap and makes every team tighter? He did the best job he could have in his position and have full faith in his decisions. The team on paper is brilliant, the on-ice product is a mess right now but I think that's more down to preparation, fatigue, mistakes, coaching and the players, not the GM.

1) I hated to see Marky go, But because of age, term  and expansion draft and Demko a better goalie at 25 than Marky was (Demko would not clear waivers) and in age with the core, I can agree on the hard decision to let him go

 

2) Tanev would get hurt because he would sacrifice his body to play defense like no other, If you want a committed player giving it all for your team, then should not complain when he gets hurt doing that for you, I am sure he didn't enjoy the pain and getting hurt from blocking, He has determination not to get scored on each shift, and would love to see each person with his attitude, commitment and demeanour

 

3) JB is right saying we don't need more offense? He stated before BB got hurt that he wanted a top 6 RW and wasted picks to get one 4x4 You keep him knowing he wanted to stay and you spend assets in getting him

 

4) A free pass on the Gm and blame the players and coaches that he hired? There was no reason for a League bottom feeder team to be up against the cap like they were a superstar Stanley Cup team, that is just poor money cap management and in doing so, never left options open to afford great deals and instead got into bidding wars for benched players not even playing, He buys high, sells low

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19 hours ago, IBatch said:

Might as well say EDM and TO also wasted their window - same with PIT when they drafted Crosby - none of them won a cup while their cores were on their ELCs...although PIT managed it a year later ... 

I am a Canuck fan and don't care what other teams did. I care that we have a solid young core that wants to win and win now. Me and you have discussed the cap for a few years now. Are you not upset with the waisted cap space that could have been used to surround this core with talented depth. 

Two years from now we might be retooling because of this. 

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1 hour ago, EP Phone Home said:

 

I will say that Benning has been our best Drafter (wither that’s him or Brackett remains to be seen) this team had ever had

I can make a case of Inge Hammarström as best drafter. B)

He was the first that started scouting  for Europe long time ago. 

Jagr, Foppa, Petey, Dahlen is a few he scouted and told the team(he worked for) was the best choice. 

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29 minutes ago, Timråfan said:

I can make a case of Inge Hammarström as best drafter. B)

He was the first that started scouting  for Europe long time ago. 

Jagr, Foppa, Petey, Dahlen is a few he scouted and told the team(he worked for) was the best choice. 

It's tough to isolate scouts as "the one" without the benefit of their history. Most teams have checks and double checks by not one but many scouts. There are systems in place to ensure any high round pick or maybe every pick is seen by numerous different scouts. There is for instance a lot of North American scouts working in Europe and EU scouts come over here too. In the case of Pettersson I understand Ron Delorme was the first to identify EP as special, but I doubt it ended there. I have no idea how many scouts subsequentley took a look at EP. One thing for sure GM's are involved in the high picks but rarely into the later round picks, that's usually the Head amateur scout. I understand the Canucks have scout who mostly stick to their local while they have other who are "cross over " scouts. The Head amateur scouts sets the system and who or what should be the defining view of how they should rank player. Vcr has 14 amateur player scouts and 4 professional player scouts. It's a business that detrmines the clubs future. I understand that Patrick Johnson is well thought of in  EU

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Take a look at the Colorado Avalanche. Did their rebuild go smoothly? No it did not. Sakic was coming close to getting fired at one time. Nathan MacKinnon's career did not take off until his 5th NHL season. Did the 2011 Canucks get to where they were smoothly? Fans wanted the Sedins to be traded because they could not beat Chicago time and time again. 

 

Rebuilds are not easy and they take a long time, with TRIALS and ERRORS (i.e. mistakes) along the way. This is why I am not buying into this Montreal hype. Was it easy and smooth for Toronto, Calgary and Edmonton? It took Ovechkin, a generational goal scorer, 13 seasons to win a Cup. 

 

Some of the critical criteria for J.B.'s management team are:

 

- Did they contribute substantially to the LONG TERM growth of this franchise?

- Did they substantially damage the prospect of this franchise in the LONG RUN?

 

We can not really judge these until the Seattle expansion draft is done and Pettersson and Hughes sign their new contracts. By then we would have more concrete evidence to go over. 

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20 minutes ago, Fred65 said:

It's tough to isolate scouts as "the one" without the benefit of their history. Most teams have checks and double checks by not one but many scouts. There are systems in place to ensure any high round pick or maybe every pick is seen by numerous different scouts. There is for instance a lot of North American scouts working in Europe and EU scouts come over here too. In the case of Pettersson I understand Ron Delorme was the first to identify EP as special, but I doubt it ended there. I have no idea how many scouts subsequentley took a look at EP. One thing for sure GM's are involved in the high picks but rarely into the later round picks, that's usually the Head amateur scout. I understand the Canucks have scout who mostly stick to their local while they have other who are "cross over " scouts. The Head amateur scouts sets the system and who or what should be the defining view of how they should rank player. Vcr has 14 amateur player scouts and 4 professional player scouts. It's a business that detrmines the clubs future. I understand that Patrick Johnson is well thought of in  EU

Well, Inge knew about Petey long before Delorme. Inge was born in Timrå so I bet he heard about this kid when Petey started playing for Timrå. 

So Inge heard the story from the beginning.

The determination etc... Wich propably is why Inge thought Petey was the best in the draft. 

One problem with Benning is that he seems to be a little Trumpalike and don't like people that say or do things that take away Bennings glory(or whatever give Benning satisfaction).

 

 

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Taffoli is a covid fluke, he ain't scoring on anyone else, one goal? When we switch back to our regular season schedule we'll only see him maybe twice a year or whatever. And now nobody wants to hit him because their all still friends. We really have to shut him down to have a chance against the Habs and hit him. Four games left against Montreal?

Plus I really wished he would have scored like that for us in the playoffs, but no he saved it for scoring on us.

He needs Petie attention.

 

 

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35 minutes ago, Maddogy said:

Take a look at the Colorado Avalanche. Did their rebuild go smoothly? No it did not. Sakic was coming close to getting fired at one time. Nathan MacKinnon's career did not take off until his 5th NHL season. 

Ummm... Sakic got his team from terrible to into the playoffs in two drafts.  His first year he was hired at the last minute when training camp started and had no offseason or draft.  He had two full offseason building the team and they haven’t missed the playoffs since.
 

Mackinnon had 24 goals and 63 points in his rookie season right after being drafted as an 18 year old.  He was solid from day 1.  It took him 5 years to become a perennial 40 goal scorer and one of the very best players in the league... but his career took off right away.  His only sub 50 point season was due to missing a big chunk of games.

 

We also now have a below average prospect pool since we graduated everyone into the lineup (and are still struggling).  Colorado still has an excellent prospect pools and are currently tied for 1st in their division while we are below .500

 

Colorado did all their work with one of the smallest cap hits in the league, were able to use that sign players to fill holes, and are perfectly set up going forward to pay their young guys when they come up for renewal.

 

Using Colorado as a comparison makes us look worse and not better.  Benning has had a year more, less success, started from a better spot, threw away a ton of picks in ill advised trades, and allocated the cap poorly resulting in the team going backward and not forward.

 

No one in the league takes our roster and cap situation over Colorado’s.

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3 hours ago, ba;;isticsports said:

3) JB is right saying we don't need more offense? He stated before BB got hurt that he wanted a top 6 RW and wasted picks to get one 4x4 You keep him knowing he wanted to stay and you spend assets in getting him

I'd rather Canucks have more offense than more players (especially one with a $6 Million cap hit) in the press box.

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59 minutes ago, Maddogy said:

Take a look at the Colorado Avalanche. Did their rebuild go smoothly? No it did not. Sakic was coming close to getting fired at one time. Nathan MacKinnon's career did not take off until his 5th NHL season. Did the 2011 Canucks get to where they were smoothly? Fans wanted the Sedins to be traded because they could not beat Chicago time and time again. 

Or Vancouver could end up like Florida. Have some really talented players but only makes it to the playoffs that odd year. 

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4 minutes ago, Provost said:

Ummm... Sakic got his team from terrible to into the playoffs in two drafts.  His first year he was hired at the last minute when training camp started and had no offseason or draft.  He had two full offseason building the team and they haven’t missed the playoffs since.
 

Mackinnon had 24 goals and 63 points in his rookie season right after being drafted as an 18 year old.  He was solid from day 1.  It took him 5 years to become a perennial 40 goal scorer and one of the very best players in the league... but his career took off right away.  His only sub 50 point season was due to missing a big chunk of games.

 

We also now have a below average prospect pool since we graduated everyone into the lineup (and are still struggling).  Colorado still has an excellent prospect pools and are currently tied for 1st in their division while we are below .500

 

Colorado did all their work with one of the smallest cap hits in the league, were able to use that sign players to fill holes, and are perfectly set up going forward to pay their young guys when they come up for renewal.

 

Using Colorado as a comparison makes us look worse and not better.  Benning has had a year more, less success, started from a better spot, threw away a ton of picks in ill advised trades, and allocated the cap poorly resulting in the team going backward and not forward.

 

No one in the league takes our roster and cap situation over Colorado’s.

Sakic inherited Landeskog,MacKinnon,O'Reilly,Duchene,Barrie in 2014-15

Contrast that to what the Canucks had in 2014-15?

Colorado made the post season twice in a 9 year span.(2006-16) That cant be discounted

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In the beginning They said

We are a playoff team and we can turn it around here fast.

They signed older player and used up all the 11 million cap space for two players

They showed how their management strength by allowing Kesler trade desire to crush their resolve and they traded him even though they didn't need to.

The next few years they kept on about being a playoff team and used the excuse of clause contracts for the lack of trades

They still over spent on the cap

Signed old players to term over paid clause contracts

Then they tried to change history by saying they were re-buiding the team all along leaving fans wondering why so many draft picks were traded away.

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5 minutes ago, Honky Cat said:

Sakic inherited Landeskog,MacKinnon,O'Reilly,Duchene,Barrie in 2014-15

Contrast that to what the Canucks had in 2014-15?

Colorado made the post season twice in a 9 year span.(2006-16) That cant be discounted

Interesting comparison. Sakic drafted MacKinnon after tanking to get they pick.

With that group they didn't get far but Sakic traded Duchene, O'Reilly and Barrie to become better and become a powerhouse

Today the Canucks have

Horvat, Pettersson, Boeser and Hughes

So who of those get traded to become a powerhouse?

 

Sakic didn't wait 4 years to decide, he decided after one season, Benning hasn't decided yet, he still thinks he can sign 30 yr olds and that getting close to a playoff spot is a big win. Maybe for his limitations but

 

Both Colorado playoff appearances were earned, at least one of the Canucks is purely a fluke.

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Jim Benning is among the least eloquent GMs in the league and in this market a good communicator is absolutely necessary. I'm not saying that the GM needs to be transparent. I'm saying that when they do talk, they need to be clear. I do not have much trust in Benning at all, but I can't tell if this is because he is genuinely a bad GM or because his is not well-spoken and perhaps not especially intelligent. 

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3 minutes ago, Lazurus said:

Interesting comparison. Sakic drafted MacKinnon after tanking to get they pick.

With that group they didn't get far but Sakic traded Duchene, O'Reilly and Barrie to become better and become a powerhouse

Today the Canucks have

Horvat, Pettersson, Boeser and Hughes

So who of those get traded to become a powerhouse?

 

Sakic didn't wait 4 years to decide, he decided after one season, Benning hasn't decided yet, he still thinks he can sign 30 yr olds and that getting close to a playoff spot is a big win. Maybe for his limitations but

 

Both Colorado playoff appearances were earned, at least one of the Canucks is purely a fluke.

Who were our top young gun impact players in 2014 ,that could be traded?

One of these things is not like the other.

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55 minutes ago, Timråfan said:

Well, Inge knew about Petey long before Delorme. Inge was born in Timrå so I bet he heard about this kid when Petey started playing for Timrå. 

So Inge heard the story from the beginning.

The determination etc... Wich propably is why Inge thought Petey was the best in the draft. 

One problem with Benning is that he seems to be a little Trumpalike and don't like people that say or do things that take away Bennings glory(or whatever give Benning satisfaction).

 

 

Thanks for that if he was living in Timra it all makes  sense. In retrospect he's clearly the best forward in 2017, although Cale Makar taken 1 spot ahead of EP would have been another great choice, both very good.

 

As to Benning ( Trump in disguise) I've wanted to say that for a long time, I'm glad it was  you. I tend to think that was part and parcel of the Brackett being let go. The key to scouts are who can find a gem in the later rounds IMO. That shows who has a "hockey eye." You should get a quality player in the first round and the earlier you pick the better the chance ( FYG success in the first round is 66% but 25% beyond that )

 

 

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