Remember the expansion Minnesota Wild?
Yeah, George McPhee doesn’t want to build that kind of team in Las Vegas.
McPhee, recently named the general manager of the NHL’s newest franchise, told Sports Illustrated that he wants to build his team “the same way we built the Washington teams— big, talented teams that can score goals. I think that’s the way the game should be played.”
It’s a noble objective, and it will be interesting to see if he can pull it off. And if he can, how quickly can he do it? Certainly, Las Vegas will get to choose from a better pool of players than Minnesota and Columbus got to divvy up in the 2000 expansion draft.
The Wild, of course, hired Jacques Lemaire as their head coach and, lacking offensive talent, proceeded to employ a lock-it-down style. While they made a surprise run to the Western Conference Final in just their third season, they definitely didn’t play the kind of attacking hockey that McPhee wants to see.
“We are in the entertainment business and we certainly want to win, but you want to entertain while you’re doing it,” McPhee said. “We’re not going to play sit-back hockey. We’re going to attack.”