o 10 games by beating Rouyn-Norand

  • Why. John Brooks Jersey . Cant. We. Be. Great? Those were the words of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment President Tim Leiweke back in January when Toronto FC unveiled the double signing of Jermain Defoe and Michael Bradley. Leiweke was riding in on his white horse to save a club that had been mired in failure for seven years. His approach was to throw money at TFCs problems; the club had never before had players of the calibre of Defoe and Bradley, and Leiweke felt that all that was needed to turn things around was to sign better players, regardless of their inflated cost. Leiweke is the man credited with bringing David Beckham to Major League Soccer, so fans jumped on board to support the President; TFC finally had a man in charge who had experience and who knew what it takes to succeed in MLS. Despite all the hype and fanfare, though, Leiweke failed to address the fatal flaw that has plagued the Toronto FC organization since its inaugural year back in 2007: internal disarray. When Leiweke fired Kevin Payne - the GM that Leiweke inherited when he joined MLSE in late April 2013 - many people close to the club viewed this as proof that Leiweke knew what he was doing. Payne had made a series of bizarre decisions during his time in charge, including the hiring of Ryan Nelsen as the clubs head coach. When Nelsen was hired, he was still a player for QPR in the English Premier League and had no coaching experience. Leiweke replaced Payne with Tim Bezbatchenko - the Senior Director of Player Relations and Competition at the MLS head office - as the club’s GM. On the hiring, Leiweke said, Tim brings an analytical mind to the job along with the best understanding that I’ve seen of the salary cap and how to manage it. He knows how to build a team that will win long-term and he believes, like we do, that his vision will have an immediate and positive impact on this team. Bezbatchenko was essentially brought in to be TFCs capologist - the person in charge of negotiating contracts and getting TFCs notoriously poor cap management under control. But rather than cleaning house, hitting the reset button and starting with a clean slate, Leiweke instead chose to perpetuate TFC’s problems; he shackled his new GM to a coach he didn’t hire. Rather than empowering Bezbatchenko to search high and low for his own coach, someone he knew he could work with, Leiweke instead forced his GM to work with Nelsen. Leiweke did this for a very simple reason: he wanted to use Nelsens extensive list of contacts to attract better players to the club. The strategy worked - to an extent. The signings of Defoe and Brazilian goalkeeper Julio Cesar happened because of Nelsen, as did the addition of English striker Luke Moore. These were players that Nelsen knew well, and they joined the club primarily because of Nelsen. Many of the other players who were signed by the club during Nelsen’s tenure - the likes of Collen Warner, Domenic Oduro and Warren Creavalle - were also Nelsen signings” that Bezbatchenko allegedly opposed. Say what you will about Nelsens coaching and game management - he was a rookie coach who was learning his trade on the job under a massive spotlight, and was always going to make mistakes - but he is no fool. He has extensive experience in the game and is an intelligent man who saw very clearly the problems with which he was faced. Nelsen did some good things for the club, including getting them out from under a horrible cap situation, but he was set up to fail as soon as Bezbatchenko replaced Payne. In the North American sporting landscape, the GM doesnt work for the coach - it is the other way around. The GM has the power to hire and fire the coach as he sees fit, and despite the pretense under which Bezbatchenko was hired - that he would remain behind the scenes and manage the cap, leaving Nelsen and his staff to get on with coaching the team – he, too, would have known that. For Bezbatchenko, it was all about biding his time. Nelsen was always going to be the fall guy if TFC failed to deliver on Leiwekes promise that the club would make the playoffs for the first time in club history. And Nelsen knew it. To make matters worse, when Bezbatchenko hired Greg Vanney to be TFCs new Academy Director back in December, Nelsen had to look over his shoulder every day at the man he knew was lined up for his job. It’s hardly a working environment that is conducive to success, is it? If there has been a running theme at Toronto FC for the last eight years, it can be summed up with one word: dysfunction. It isn’t as difficult to build a successful club as Toronto FC has made it appear to be. It starts with hiring good leadership, who in turn hire competent coaches and staff to execute their roles in achieving the ultimate goal of winning a championship. When Bezbatchenko fired Nelsen, TFC were sitting in third place in the Eastern Conference with just 10 games to play. Bezbatchenko took a massive gamble, banking on Vanney being able to pick up enough points to see the team over the finish line. That gamble backfired and Toronto FC is now headed into the final weekend of the season with absolutely nothing to play for; their playoff dream is in tatters once again. Firing Ryan Nelsen was Bezbatchenko’s one ‘get out of jail free’ card. If he had left Nelsen in charge until the end of the season and TFC failed to make the playoffs, Bezbatchenko could have fired Nelsen then and fans would have thought nothing of it. By bringing Vanney on board with 10 games to play and then failing to deliver a playoff place, Bezbatchenko turned the firing squad towards himself and Vanney instead. Bezbatchenko and Vanney may very well be the right men to take Toronto FC into the playoffs next season. They might be exactly what the club has needed all these years, and this may be the start of a new era at club. But TFC fans don’t want to hear that. They don’t want to hear that a rookie GM - who hired a rookie head coach – needs time to turn the ship in the right direction. They’ve heard it all before, and they recognize the sound of a broken record better than most. Make no mistake about it: Bezbatchenko and Vanney are now firmly on the clock, and anything short of a strong start to next season will see fans calling for them, too, to be replaced. Why can’t we be great? Toronto FC proved this year that it has mastered one thing over the last eight seasons: over-promising and under-delivering. Clint Dempsey Jersey . That time around, the cage is as much a part of baseballs daily routine as a beer and a hotdog is to a fan in the stands. Coaches, scouts, broadcasters and other media hover, tossing verbal barbs, telling stories and sharing laughs. Occasionally, especially in spring when the atmosphere is relatively laid back, the list of invited guests expands and on this day, Gibbons welcomed two men strongly influential in his life. Walker Zimmerman Jersey . Pedroia reached the milestone with a little panache, hitting a grand slam in the sixth inning and propelling the Boston Red Sox to a 7-1 win over the Oakland Athletics on Friday night.BATHURST, N.B. - Nikolaj Ehlers reached the 40-goal mark by scoring three times as the Halifax Mooseheads blanked the host Acadie-Bathurst Titan 6-0 on Friday in Quebec Major Junior Hockey League action. Goaltender Zachary Fucale only had to make 18 saves for the shutout while Ehlers tacked on an assist for a four-point outing. Austyn Hardie scored once and set up two more for the Mooseheads (40-18-3), who extended their win streak to five games, and Andrew Ryan and Philippe Gadoury had the others. Titan (18-37-6) defenceman Alexandre Gosselin was caught on the ice for all six goals against. Miguel Sullivan stopped 34-of-40 shots for Acadie-Bathurst, which fell to 1-8-1 in its last 10 contests. --- ISLANDERS 5 WILDCATS 4 MONCTON, N.B. -- Bradley Kennedy scored twice as Charlottetown snapped a four-game slide by edging the Wildcats. Spenser Cobbold scored once and assisted on two others for the Islanders (19-36-6) while Troy Vance and Daniel Sprong each had a goal and an assist. Stephan Seegar, Mark Simpson, Vladimir Tkachev and Christopher Caissy supplied the scoring for Moncton (30-29-3), which dropped its fourth straight game. Mason MacDonald made 34 saves for Charlottetown as Jason Rioux turned away 19-of-24 shots for the Wildcats. --- SCREAMING EAGLES 4 SEA DOGS 3 SAINT JOHN, N.B. --Jeremy Beaudry scored twice, including the winner 4:09 into overtime, as Cape Breton picked up its sixth win in its last seven outings by slipping past the Sea Dogs. Julien Pelletier and Clark Bishop also scored for the Screaming Eagles (33-24-4), who blew a 3-0 third-period lead before salvaging the two points. Jason Cameron, Matthew Highmore and Nicolas Hebert scored in a 4:17 span for Saint John (18-37-5) to force extra time. Cape Bretons Alex Bureau made 22 saves. Sebastien Auger kicked out 34-of-38 shots for the Sea Dogs. --- TIGRES 7 SAGUENEENS 1 CHICOUTIMI, Que. -- Jean-Francois Plante scored twice and Brandon Whitney made 36 saves as Victoriaville crushed the Sagueneens. Lukas Pozgay, Carl-Antoine Delisle, Angelo Miceli, Anthony Beaulieu and Philippe Hudon also scored for the Tigres (31-23-7). Nikita Liamkin scored the lone goal for Chicoutimi (26-34-1). Julio Billia started in net for Chicoutimi and gave up six goals on 29 shots before giving way to Mathieu Duquette, who stopped 1-of-2 shhots in eight minutes of relief. Matt Miazga Jersey. --- DRAKKAR 4 PHOENIX 1 BAIE-COMEAU, Que. -- The Drakkar used a three-goal third period to slip past Sherbrooke. Jeremy Gregoire, Denis Gorbunov and Valentin Zykov scored in the third for Baie-Comeau (43-15-4) and Maxim St-Cyr opened the scoring in the second. Daniel Audette scored the lone goal for the Phoenix (16-38-7), who sit three points out of the final playoff position. Simon Lemieux made 24 saves for the Drakkar while Sherbrookes Francis Desrosiers turned aside 40-of-44 shots in a losing cause. --- ARMADA 3 VOLTIGEURS 1 DRUMMONDVILLE, Que. -- Christopher Clapperton scored twice as Blainville-Boisbriand snapped a four-game skid by downing the Voltigeurs. Marc-Olivier Roy also scored for the Armada (38-14-9) and Etienne Marcoux stopped 29 shots for the victory. Ryan Culkin scored the lone goal for Drummondville (37-21-4). Louis-Philip Guindon turned aside 13-of-15 for the Voltigeurs. --- FOREURS 5 OLYMPIQUES 0 GATINEAU, Que. -- Anthony Mantha had two goals and an assist and Antoine Bibeau stopped 32 shots as Val-dOr shutout the Olympiques. Louick Marcotte scored once for the Foreurs (40-19-2) and assisted on goals by Anthony Richard and Samuel Henley. Martin Reway and Emile Poirier led Gatineau (37-20-4) in shots on net with four each. Robert Steeves stopped 32-of-37 shots for the Olympiques. --- OCEANIC 3 HUSKIES 1 RIMOUSKI, Que. -- Michael Joly had a pair of goals as the Oceanic extended their win streak to 10 games by beating Rouyn-Noranda. Frederik Gauthier also scored for Rimouski (39-15-7) and now has five goals in his last four outings. Oceanic netminder Philippe Desrosiers made 20 saves for the win. Jason Fuchs scored the lone goal for the Huskies (33-23-5) and Guillaume Decelles stopped 20-of-22 shots in a losing cause. --- CATARACTES 2 REMPARTS 1 (SO) SHAWINIGAN, Que. -- Giovanni Fiore scored once in regulation and the lone goal of the shootout as the Cataractes downed Quebec. Marvin Cupper turned away 40-of-41 shots through 65 minutes and all three shooters in the shootout for Shawinigan (16-36-8). Mikhail Grigorenko scored for the Remparts (35-16-9) while Francois Brassard made 30 saves in a losing cause. The Cataractes went 0 for 3 on the power play while Quebec scored once on three chances. Wholesale NFL GearWholesale Jerseys 2018 China NFL Jerseys White Cheap NFL Jerseys Camo Cheap NFL Womens Jerseys Cheap Jerseys NFL Jerseys Cheap ' ' '