With the waiving of Arron Asham and Martin Biron, Alain Vigneault has put his first stamp on this team.
You can blame a tough start due to travel, team “geling” or whatever excuse you want to name, but these were the first moves of a new regime wanting to mold the roster in how he wants them to play. That’s not to say the moves weren’t warranted, but one can question why it took so long.
With a heavy travel schedule in the preseason and a west coast trip to start it was obvious why the new coach wanted to keep as many bodies around for as long as he could, but thus far, the cost seems to be a team that’s not quite sure how to play as a unit. Would they have been more cohesive by pairing down early and letting the team learn his system?
Waiving a backup goalie and a 4th line role player will not change their fortunes if the talent ahead of them on the depth chart can’t play together. The loss of star forward Rick Nash only compounds the fact that the talent they have to now outwork their opponents. Which comes down to a new coach putting the talent he has at his disposal into a team that plays in his vision.
I personally think these are just a couple of moves that are the first of many. Every new staff has their preferences and AV is no exception. He’s still learning what he has available, but I can’t help but feel that he and the rest of the organization took too much time in figuring it out. The season is young, but points are points.
Being on the road may have been unavoidable to start this season, but the preseason travel and decision to keep a large roster around until the last minute may have cost this team some early road points. As well as take a new coach longer to see who he wants to keep around.