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Blue Jackets Links

This is my obligatory "immature" post of the month.

Sunday, September 17, 2006
Dear Robert Picarello,

When you start making power rankings that don't revolve around a team's overall record alone each week (if I wanted that I'd just sort the standings page to show league standings), I'll start taking your team reviews seriously. Until then, you can take your 14th place Blue Jackets finish and shove it.

With Love,
Michael D. Turner

P.S. Try working in statistics. That's all your cruddy power rankings are, anyway. All numbers, no commentary.
  • At 2:03 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Michael -

    While I respect your opinion about my Power Rankings, if you would have taken the time to look over them each week last season, you would have realized that my Power Rankings weren't based on team's overall records. They were based on club's weekly performances.

    PRs are calculated to give fans something OTHER than overall records to rank their teams with. If you would have taken the time to read the note on my weekly rankings you would have known that my rankings had nothing to do with where teams were in the NHL standings...they were based on "a formula of points earned divided by the maximum amount of points possible [points/games played x 2]. In case of a tie, categories such as wins, goals against, goals for, power play goals and power play percentage will determine rankings."

    Maybe you didn't like the formula or POWER RANKINGS because your team was usually at the bottom of the list last season? And maybe that's why you're all bent out of shape with this year's Blue Jackets preview?

    Sometimes the truth hurts my friend. And that's all I've been writing for the last 15 years when covering the NHL.

    Maybe you can clue me in on what you think Power Rankings should be based on each week? Also, let me know where you think Columbus will finish this year. Maybe if you can answer that honestly, I'll take what you say seriously.

    Best of luck this season!

  • At 7:09 AM, Blogger Michael Turner said…

    Oh, the placing isn't what bothers me at all, really. In fact if I had to use an example, I would say that Scott Burnside of ESPN's recent season preview sits well with me, despite the fact that he projects the Blue Jackets to finish 11th place overall in the West. Of course there are some things that I disagree with, but that's expected, right?

    Now personally I'm no fan of making predictions. Those aren't my thing, and I'm about as superstitious as they come when it comes to saying I think my team of choice will finish high enough for the playoffs. But personally, I think the Jackets are being given too little credit. If I really had to choose a placing, I'd say it'd be in that 9th to 11th place spot. Yes, there are a lot of variables involved with the Blue Jackets this season that need answers, such as whether Leclaire can step up his game, whether the Blue Jackets can finally do something worthwhile on the special teams, and whether or not any of their off-season movements were on par with the rest of the league. Then there are other issues such as the patchwork defense which hinges on just a couple of good blue liners, and whether or not this year Nash is healthy all season, let alone other key players.

    But right now the Jackets probably have one of the biggest gluts of player skill on the forward lines that they've ever seen, and I really think plenty of teams would be and maybe even are jealous of that. When you've got so many top six forwards that you'll probably very well end up playing a guy like Anson Carter or David Vyborny on the third line, it boggles your mind.

    Since at the moment Fox Sports is acting a little crazy, I can't go and see the formula behind your Power Rankings. But what I do know is that whenever I have checked them, the placement of each team has relied simply on where they would be in a league-wide position of standings via points, or record if a team is tied. Where's the fun in that? You look at the power rankings churned out by TSN, ESPN, or even and while the records are certainly important, so is the current steam that a team has built up between the previous and current power rankings. Just because a team is 25th overall in the league doesn't mean it works in a power rankings. Look at the example that Fox Sports has for their NFL ones as well, with a 3-0 team like the Saints all the way at 11th based off of things besides a record. If that was the only variable (or most important one), they'd be at worst in 7th.

    The truth is, I see your rankings, and it doesn't feel like personal commentary. It feels like I'm just reading a capsule of the past week. Maybe I'm different, though ... I prefer side comments, zingers, and some bite behind the rankings. There's no need to just review what the team's record was over the week.

    I'm sorry for the attitude in the post, though. And I'm not just saying that because you came across my little neck of the woods on the blogosphere ... I definitely was out of line with the smart-ass comments. Yes, you definitely have a boatload more experience at this than me, so I can't argue that. And whether or not I agree with your power rankings or team preview, I respect and look at a lot of what you do write for Fox Sports. But I still have to disagree about those two things in particular.

  • At 8:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Fair enough Michael.

    And trust me, I know what you're talking about when it comes to the talent the Jackets have -- I've seen their talents up close many times -- but that still doesn't make me a believer for this year.

    I hope I'm wrong because I'd love to see them do well, especially Pascal LeClaire. I've covered him and talked to him many times since he's been drafted. Not only is he a great kid, but he's also the real deal. He has some of the quickest reflexes in goal that I've seen in years.

    Again, I hope you enjoy the upcoming season and don't be a stranger. Come over to Fox and visit us sometime. While you may not like what I have to say all the time, know that I'll give you an honest opinion.

    All the best,

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About Me: A mid-20s male who feels much too old even before he's 30. Has a degree in Sport Management and after branching out and trying a few other things in the job market, has finally decided to go back to his first love of hockey and hope he can break in with a team, big or small, somehow.
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