Is Mike Babcock too soft? #MyColumn

When Mike Babcock was hired this offseason, culture change was promised. He was going to work these guys. Pound them into being better players and better human beings. But so far, his coddling of skill players and lack of grit leaves a lot to be desired. For someone who talked a lot of game, he hasn’t risen to the occasion.

It’s like Mike thinks that his reputation alone is going to do the work for him. Maybe Mike hasn’t heard the old expression: it’s not how big your reputation is, it’s how you use it. And he hasn’t used it well at all. 
In the game against the Sabres, Nazem Kadri had a beautiful assist. The only problem is that it was on Evander Kane’s goal. Evander Kane plays for the other team. And instead of lambasting Kadri like he should have, Mike Babcock did the opposite. As a fan, this was hard to swallow.

With a name like Mike Babcock, it’s disappointing that he’s this soft. He should have been so mad that he was throbbing. Instead, disappointment. 
I’d like Mike Babcock to be hard on these players. This isn’t his first time. He’s in the thick of it and needs to show these players some real accountability. It’s been a long time coming, and they need to be shown who’s boss.
This is a big season for the Leafs. A monster one. This is the season when our boys become men, and so far Babcock is dropping the ball. Maybe Babcock is being a lot harder on the players in private, but ding dong Mike, time is running out. 
They’re 20th in PIMs. Their PK is 27th. Matt Hunwick, who leads the team in blocked shots, is 34th in the league. This is all junk. 
Who does all this softness remind you of? That’s right: Phil Kessel, the guy who ate hot dogs every day.
There’s no beating around the bush: Mike needs to stick it to these players. They have to dig deep, and grip their sticks. Another piece of advice: Stop shooting so much. Clearly, they are getting too excited and just shooting wherever and whenever they want. That’s a lot of rubber. It only matters if you score. Quality over quantity, boys.
If Mike Babcock gets harder and wins us a Cup, then I will personally erect a statue in his name.
Oh and call up Willie Nylander.
  • Gary Empey

    So what you are saying Bobby ” It is time for Babcock to take the gloves off and quit coddling these overpaid guys” Forget about those posted notes when they come off the ice. Maybe a cuff in the ear would be more effective. Did you mean, instead of lambasting Kadri like he should have, on Evander Kane’s goal, he should of told him not to worry about it cause he would be in the AHL right after the game ? What do you say about the media scrums right after the game? Do you think Babcock should smack a couple of those sorry excuses for writers around? (Remember when Phil Esposito punched Bob Mckennzie)
    You mention “call up Willie Nylander.” Do you think Clune should come as well to keep some of those so called skilled guys we have in line?

  • Gary Empey

    I think it is to early for Mike Babcock to be the hard ass, maybe some players like Kadri benefit from a pat on the back and re-assurances instead of being beaten down game after game for making mistakes. I believe Babcock even stated that each player is different and they some need a pat on the back and some need a kick in the ass. Willie Nylander should be nowhere near this disaster let him play big minutes in the AHL. Part of the problem in the past was that we had no patience and now you want to make the same mistake with Nylander or whoever else has a good stretch in the AHL. The focus should be developing Rielly, Gardiner, Kadrui and maybe JVR the rest wont be around in 2 or 3 years.

  • Gary Empey

    Booby, booby, booby, you probably stayed up half the night trying to think of some moronic column to write. Well you succeeded.

    Look any intelligent leaf, no it ain’t an oxymoron knew that this year we would be watching an A.H.L. Team. Hell my doctor told me that I need an extra flu shot as a new virus appeared at the beginning of October, namely leafitis.

    He recommended that I get the wonderful new anditote namely The exciting, entertaining, improving, playoff bound Toronto Raptors.

    Now I get this is going to be a long, long season for the dedicated writers in here as the only response you will mainly get is too individuals debating who is more of an A.H.L. goalie namely Bernier or Reimer.

    So yeah it ain’t going to be fun. But then again the Canucklehead squad has even won a home game for their deluded fans.

  • Gary Empey


    TEXT: I’d like Mike Babcock to be hard on these players. This isn’t his first time. He’s in the thick of it and needs to show these players some real accountability. It’s been a long time coming, and they need to be shown who’s boss.

    REVISIONS: I’d like Mike Babcock to be hard on these players [meaning?]. This isn’t his first time [that x or y has happened]. He’s in the thick of it [what?] and needs to show these players [who?] some real accountability [and this may entail …]. It’s [and by it, I mean …] been a long time coming, and they [these people …] need to be shown who’s boss [because …].

  • MatsSundin#13

    Why satirize Carlyle while he is here only to resort to indirectly praising his methods when Babcock comes around? I would like to see you coach the Leafs, Mr. Cappuccino

  • jasken

    Kadri made a bad play Babcock knew it could happen to anyone but calling him soft I dont know about that. He benched Kadri a few games earlier and yelled at him from the bench for not line changing with his teammates and caring the puck in when he was told to dump it and change. That also led to a goal against but Babcock is weird on what upsets him and what dont I guess.

    This season is nothing for Babcock except to get the players to do things the right way although your stats fanatics might have some problems in the office. I mean by now the anti-stats guys in there are really letting them have it or should be.

    I would be having a ball walking by them everyday 10-33-7 in last 50 games well atleast were not getting out shot every game give them a friendly pat on the back and say good job.

  • For half a million a year, the Leafs could have hired me or any number of coaches who would be berating the players and re-arranging the plumbing in the dressing room. The Leafs paid top dollar for a coach who has a vision and realizes that you can’t make chicken salad out of chicken bones. There is always a process called the implementation dip. When you put in new systems, success or production goes down until the players are comfortable and just react rather than having to think. Couple this with the level of talent, minimal puck luck and untimely goaltending and you can put the team’s success in perspective.
    As just one example, Morgan is getting minimal PP minutes as the coach doesn’t want too much on his plate in order to focus on his d-zone techniques.
    Let’s just watch the games as a student rather than a mindless fan and take heart in the improvement of the execution and what it will set up as the seasons progress.