Ron Wilson Should Stick A Sock In It!

Is it me or has Ron Wilson picked up where JP Ricciardi left off? Did these two go to the same PR and motivational schools? In the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter what the hell the fans think of a coach. It matters even less when they are winning. Every time I read a quote from Ron Wilson lately, I want to strangle the guy, or at the very least stick a sock in his mouth.

“”You have one (expletive) goal in your last 10 games,” Wilson said to Kessel.”

From where I am sitting, there is no problem for a coach to rip one his players in front of his teammates. It’s not my preferred method, embarassing a guy, but lots use it. What I don’t get is doing it within earshot of the entire throng of media hounds hanging around watching practice. I once worked for a real SOB. He constantly reduced people to tears in his office. However outside that office, to the rest of the company, no one would say a bad thing about anyone on his team, he defended everyone like they were his kids. You want to embarrass your star player in front of his teammates, wouldn’t it be smarter to do so behind a closed locker room door?

“”We do it here because I’m pissed off, okay?” he said. “You do need a kick in the rump once in a while. Then we’ll see how people respond.”

You have to believe Wilson rubs his dog in it’s pee when it has an accident. I always thought coaches, including Wilson tried to create an environment of us against the rest of the world. Isn’t is kind of hard to establish that attitude when you treat your players like ass?

“”Actually at the end of the day, you guys shouldn’t even watch us practice,” Wilson said to the assembled scrum on Thursday. “This is the only sport where the media will report what you said to a player on the field of battle. You can’t do it in football, baseball or basketball. How many basketball practices have you ever been to? None.

“This is our office and it should be off-limits.”

i have no problem when guys rail on the press when it is deserved, here the pool did nothing wrong but show up. If Wilson prefers to work in an environment where there is only 1 or 2 writers, there is a league full of cities where he can beg for attention. If you can’t take the heat, get out of the oven.

“”We’ve got to compete harder,” Wilson said to reporters afterwards. “Not compete when we’re down 2-0. Compete from the start. Don’t get going when the score is five- or six-to-one. Compete all the time and consistently. That’s what we’re going to have to do if we want to be a competitive team.”

If the team doesn’t have the commitment to compete, isn’t that an attitude problem? Who is responsible for that attitude? I mean this isn’t Wilson’s first year here. He’s had this group for a while now. His team the other night looked as bad as the bunch did during the Paul Maurice era- which was about as bright as the John Brophy era.

I am curious what Wilson does if Kessel reacts to his lashing the same way Kaberle did to his benching? I mean what if it has a negative effect. What if instead of 10 bad games, Kessel quits on Wilson, says screw you and mails it in? I am not suggesting he will, but what if? I wonder if Wilson discusses these things with Burke et all before lashing out.

I have no problem with Wilson as a coach, I just really prefer he just shut up and coach, that’s all.

TSN’s story on Wilson is here



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January 8, 2010 10:22 am

A huge part of a coach’s job is motivating his players to get the most out of them. If you get outworked you generally lose unless you have a huge skill advantage. The Leafs don’t have that. In the case of calling out Kessel, I somewhat agree with it (because of his production) but don’t know if it’s going to make things better or worse. Kessel isn’t known for having a good attitude and I think there’s just as good a chance that he’ll just play worse and stop listening to his coach at all, as there is that he might improve a bit. I never really thought he would be able to handle much pressure when things started going poorly in Toronto so we’ll see what happens.

The other problem is that Kessel just isn’t that great a player. He does a few things really well but he’s one-dimensional and onlly effective when he’s put in the correct situation with the right players. Everyone who watched him in Boston knew this. Toronto doesn’t have the right set of guys to put him with. So what might happen is that Kessel starts trying to do more himself, which isn’t his game at all, and will just turn the puck over more, get frustrated, and backcheck less because he’s trying to cheat up ice. He’s good at finding open ice and shooting, but not at going around defenders. If he starts trying to beat guys one on one or one on two it’s just going to result in more bad turnovers. I don’t know what Wilson was expecting from Kessel when he went to the Leafs but he’s not the type of player that is going to be able to flick a switch and start scoring more. But it does look like he’s hardly working out there anymore so someone needs to at least wake him up a little.

January 8, 2010 2:15 pm

This Kessel “just isn’t that great a player. He does a few things really well but he’s one-dimensional and onlly effective when he’s put in the correct situation with the right players.” crap needs to stop. First he just turned 22. Second he back checks more often than not. 3rd its easy for other teams to only need to cover one guy (the only threat) than it is to cover his linemates that cant score.
The only thing I have an issue with Kessel is that he knows he has to do it on his own and his frustration is showing. That and the fact that he is being mauled out there night in and night out and no one is standing up for him.

January 8, 2010 7:32 pm

The whole Kessel signing/trade was the most confusing thing that I’ve seen the Leafs do in a long time. Including the JFJ days. Kessel a good final piece but not really a guy you build a team around.

This is simply not a playoff team, so why get a guy to climb from 29/30th place to what 27th place. Maybe. And give away first round picks while doing it. I think this is what I am most angry about, I’m willing to plug my nose for a couple of years and see players come through the system. Instead we are just going sideways and this time not going sideways just missing the playoffs but going sideways in just missing the first overall pick with our pick going somewhere else.

Even if you are a Kessel fan, how do you bring in players to play with him. This isn’t baseball where we can make a bunch of signings or “Yankee trades” and bring in great players just because we have the money, the draft seems like the only way to really build a team with depth and we give it away

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