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Game 3: All The Wrong Moves

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I have nothing positive to say about last night's game other than Exelby should be signed to 7 year extension and I'm counting down the days until Sutton leaves Atlanta. Hartley's attempt to shake up the defensive pairings didn't work. Nor did Hartley's goaltending moves. Nor did Hartley's "tweaks" to the power play produce any discernible improvement in a moribund man advantage.

This team is certainly not the 1975 Islanders and I don't think they can rally and win four in a row--so this series is over. The only question left is whether the Thrashers will get their first post-season win tonight before they start their summer goal season or if they will suffer the indignity of getting swept out of the playoffs.

Personally I think Hartley should not be back next year. Coaching is about adjustments and he simply is not been making enough of them. Hartley was very late to adjust to the new rules last year. He still hasn't adjusted to not having Patrick Roy as his goaltender. He can't adjust our powerplay. He couldn't adjust our PK so we had to find new people. Frankly I think the GM assembled sufficient talent for this team to advance to the 2nd round and that is not going to happen. Hartley's moves to "shake up the team" did not work and now he needs to go elsewhere.

Then begins a summer of uncertainty:
Who will fired and who will be retained?
Who will own the team after the court rules?
If Belkin wins will he keep the team?
If the Atlanta Spirit wins will they spend up to the new cap level?
Who will fill all those holes in the roster left by free agency?
Will Hossa be extended after not showing up in the playoffs?
Do we want to resign Kozlov (who will be 34) after his invisible man show?
Will we get a coach who can work with kids (Sterling, Oystrick, Enstrom) next year?
Will we cease being the oldest team in hockey?

If nothing else it should be an interesting off season for this club. Stay tuned.