Recently I mentioned the Puck Daddy “Summer of Disappointment” series they are running and how I thought they got pretty much everything on the list wrong, and that’s okay. Disagreements are the lifeblood of the internet. However, as a professional opinion giver I didn’t think it is fair to say that someone is wrong unless I’m able to show why. With that in mind, I would like to offer my opinions on the worst of the Dallas Stars. Today we take a look at the Most Disappointing Executive: The two headed general manager monster.
There’s an episode of “The Office” where someone says something about how every great organization has two leaders. Two leaders are what allowed America to be such a great country. Two leaders are what made the Mongolian Empire successful and everyone knows that every great company in today’s world has two CEO’s.
Wait, they don’t? Well no wonder it didn’t work when Brett Hull and Les Jackson shared co-general managerial roles for the Stars. When the HullJacks (coined it!) took the helm, Dallas was just starting a season that would end with a run to the Western Conference Final. The team was talented, boasting players such as Mike Modano, Marty Turco and Loui Eriksson among others. Yes, they had success under the watch of HullJacks, but so did Barry Switzer with Jimmy Johnson’s Dallas Cowboys.
As a pair, both Hull and Jackson deserve blame. Technically they were a team, so they both deserve to be on this list. However, Jackson has shown that he can shine in an executive capacity so I’m going to bag more on Hull here.
Reports indicate that Hull was supposed to be in charge of scouting, yet never seemed to go watch any games at the junior, college or minor league levels. The only games he ever seemed to be seen at were the Dallas Stars games. From what I understand, it can be hard to scout players if you don’t actually go out and scout players. There was also this quote from Hull himself, “Les does all the work, and I get all the credit.” He would go on later to say that Jackson made all the phone calls around the league, and referred to himself as a “glorified intern.”
While the pair was only on the job 19 months, they somehow managed to make 12 trades, only one of which really seemed to make any serious impact on the Stars. It was great to get Brad Richards, but giving up Mike Smith, then subsequently seeing what Smith became stung stars fans as they watched Andrew Raycroft, Richard Bachman, Christopher Nilstorp and Dan Ellis struggle to maintain a consistent level of play in the Dallas crease. Then there was the big miss, signing Sean Avery. Hull championed hard for the man who basically gave the Stars the worst public relations black eye in franchise history while splitting a locker room in half.
The comparison is not quite apples to apples, but Jim Nill has been on the job almost 16 months now, made seven trades and completely revamped the center position for the Stars while making Dallas into a legit playoff team on the rise. I love Brett Hull as a player and I like what I’ve seen of him as a person. As an NHL co-general manager however, he was certainly in the crease before the puck (see what I did there?). Hull is a Dallas sports legend who received the job on name recognition alone and was in no way qualified for the position. He didn’t do what he was brought on to do, made an all time bad decision and partly oversaw the start of one of the darkest periods of time in Stars history, leading him to earn the title of most disappointing executive in Dallas Stars history.
What do you think?
As always, I welcome your comments. Thanks for reading and go Stars!
Tags: Dallas Stars