This is Al Haig. Despite a long and distinguished career in public service he is remembered for a brief moment in time when he said “I’m in control here” when he in fact was not in control anywhere. No biggie, unless the president has just been shot.
On that historic day, Haig sounded like a character from Gotham City instead of a very powerful man with a very powerful, serious job. Richard Dreyfuss played him in the movie and that’s probably about right, although they are not political brothers-in-arms.
Kevin Lowe is the top hockey man in the Edmonton Oilers organization at this time. He acquired the GM job in summer 2000 and has been in control since that day. Should the Oilers make a trade during training camp or into the season, the final decision will fall to Kevin Lowe.
Steve Tambellini will do the ground work on trades, present the idea to Lowe (and Prendergast) with Lowe’s signature being the final seal. How long will this go on?
I honestly can’t see this working for long, as Lowe’s time will probably be spent (more and more) away from the rink and away from all the hockey games, scouting reports, etc. The farther he gets from day to day contact with other general managers the less his influence in the hockey side of the operations.
I can’t see it any other way. It isn’t good or bad, but I think it’s pretty important to make that statement now. Lowe can’t add more work in another area (after saying he needed help) and remain as in touch as is required for the GM job. He may tackle the arena project, he may streamline the management system, he may decide to add scouts in the mid-west to cover the increasingly powerful USHL and the now vital college free agent signing season.
While he’s doing that, rookies are going to emerge and veterans are going to lose a step and Kevin Lowe is going to be out of touch before you know it. Don’t take my word for it, the news was there for all to see in the August 1 Edmonton Journal. Patrick Laforge: “Kevin’s been the executive vice-president, hockey operations, for the eight years I’ve been here, so he’s had all these responsibilities. In this case, we’ll be co-equals, so that’s really the only thing that has changed. The issue, in a number of ways, is that he hasn’t had the time to do the things he’s capable of doing in a broader sense.”
What is he going to give up in order to do these things in a “broader sense?” Give control to his generals.