Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Great Gretzky Quits


"This was a difficult decision that I've thought long and hard about," Gretzky said in a statement. "We all hoped there would be a resolution earlier this month to the Coyotes ownership situation, but the decision is taking longer than expected.  Since both remaining bidders have made it clear that I don't fit into their future plans, I approached General Manger Don Maloney and suggested he begin looking for someone to replace me as coach.  Don has worked hard and explored many options.  I think he has made an excellent choice, and so now it's time for me to step aside.
The Coyotes never made the playoffs during their four seasons with Gretzky behind the bench. From 2005-06 to 2008-09, he had a 143-161-24 record for a .473 winning percentage.
"The Coyotes scouting staff has put together a great group of young and talented players who are going to improve tremendously over the next few years," the statement read.  "I'm proud of the team we've assembled, the organization with which I've been associated and the thousands of dedicated fans who have never wavered in their support of this young team. I'm confident that the best is yet to come for hockey in Phoenix."

TDR says:  The irony of it all -- 'The Great One' is resigning as a loser coach -- perhaps one of the greatest hockey players of our day, Grets has only found failure in his attempt at coaching an expansion team, has had troubles in gambling and (albeit 'hot') wife that keeps him in the trashy headlines, and leaves a shaky organization that appears to be sitting in Glendale, AZ for one more year before Ba-gillionaire Blackberry-founder Jim Balsillie buys and moves the Phoenix Coyotes to Hamilton, Ontario at the beginning of next season.  Not what Sports Illustrated had in mind when they declared "Understanding His Genius" & "The Master of Modesty", is it?

Listen, I understand the franchise is in a horrific state of affairs currently and he may be sick-to-death of coaching a losing team, but regardless of how ailing your franchise is, there are still players showing up to training camp in the hope that your hockey family is still unified -- and get this...the Coach NEVER SHOWED UP.  It is horrible enough when a player, such as Brandon Dubinsky misses the majority of camp and throws the locker room into chaos because of contract negotiations, but the 'Great One' (a.k.a. Coach of the Phoenix Coyotes) cited ownership reasons as an excuse for NOT SHOWING UP TO CAMP.  This is bullshit.  The team comes first, above everything else (except actual family) and he never demonstrated leadership this entire off-season to the franchise. It is only recently that one of the two bids has stated that Grets wasn't guaranteed a coaching position, well after the beginning of training camp - and this is just an excuse to duck out of further embarrassment.  Truth is, he just couldn't be bothered any further.  Shame, shame, shame on you Great One.

The Dark Ranger wants to nominate  Wayne Gretzky to our first TDR award.  In fact, I'd like to formally declare 'The Great One" the first recipient of the..


...for taking the low-road and displaying no sense of shared hockey integrity when the 'goings get tough'!  Well done, Grets....this is how you leave the NHL!!?



  1. It's a little harsh Dark because the Coyotes are so under shit meter as a team. Anyone with the chance would get out. I do agree with not showing up to camp is below his perceived standards or work ethic.

  2. I'm not really surprised. Remember that little fit he threw a few years back at the olympics as Director of the Canadian Team?

  3. His demands on the Phoenix Coyotes were copious and not backed up by performance.
    In the end, he did not show much of the old "we're all in this together" spirit.

    But I'm not at all surprised. That's Wayne Inc.

  4. 1) Dark: We couldn't agree more! As we wrote similarly on our blog a couple of weeks ago, TGO needed to be in camp REGARDLESS of how the ownership/court proceedings were going
    2) What kind of statement was that making to his team? He was a hold out, pure and simple. After getting over paid and not producing anything in return it was the least he could do.
    3) We don't buy the " neither potential owner wanted me" bull shit. No way would the NHL(if they won the bid and they will) would fire Gretzky. At most he'd take a big pay cut, and we believe that is why Wayne quit. He didn't want to coach and get paid what other coaches of his ability (or lack there of) get paid.

  5. Gretzky quit the Coyotes before he was punted. He was loser coach and a cry baby player who was only effective when thugs Dave Brown, Dave Semenko or Marty McSorley were around to offer on ice protection. He has been involved with one criminal owner after anouther (Skalbania, McNall, Pocklington)and a wife with questionable gambling habits. Teflon Gretzky escapes untouched. Bobby Orr was a far superior hockey player who would skate rings around Gretzky.


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