It's been over 12 hours since the Kings stole a victory away from the outstretched arms of the Sharks. The Kings were down by one goal with less than a couple of minutes to play before drawing a couple of penalties and scoring two goals in dramatic fashion. It was exciting and awe inspiring. Better yet, it puts the Kings up two games to none in the seven game series.
A Sharks team that had confidently scored three unanswered goals to take a lead turned from becoming confident masters of their own domain to floundering denizens of the deep. It was wonderful to witness and this fan still feels the adrenaline rush.
In fact, the first thing I did this morning was watch all the highlight videos. (Sorry boss, but I couldn't help myself) If you want to do the same thing go to the KingsVision channel on youtube, here.
The Kings rise to prominence over the past couple of years has been unbelievable. As a hardcore fan all you can do is cross your fingers and hope that the folks in charge of steering the club know what they are doing.
How do you build a team that can last and flourish? Do they have a plan in place? Can they execute it?
These are the type of questions all fans, no matter the sport, wonder and hope get answered.
As a long-suffering Kings fan, I witnessed firsthand how this franchise failed on all accounts. We were laughing stocks and I remember going to games when we all knew it.
Then, a change happened. A new focus was instituted after an honest assessment was made. Heck, management went out of their way to tell fans (season ticket holders) that the Kings have never had a chance. That the way they did things in the past had failed and much of that had to do with poor prior planning.
That in order to truly build a championship, we needed to change. And that change included refocusing and starting anew. So, the team did just that.
They focused on the young studs who could potentially become our core. They rebuilt the farm system and started centralizing their playing style while building a new ethic that would become the "Kings Way". And after promising that this process would last five years before seeing a championship caliber team, they delivered a Stanley Cup. Better yet, we have a team that looks to be perennial playoff contenders and a potential dynasty in the making.
Now, I'm sure your wondering how does this apply to the Dodgers?
Well, I'll start with a phrase I heard many moons ago while in college.
"Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance"
The above "7 P's" is a simple formula for building success. Whether it's in your own professional life, or for your favorite team. The Dodgers need to make a honest assessment of where they are and what they need to do to be a championship caliber team.
Have they done this, as of yet? Are Plans in place? Can they execute it?
In my mind, the answer is mixed.
Certainly, the Dodgers have the financial resources to do what they want, but resources is not the same thing as having the right plan.
But what should that plan be?
Frankly, I don't know if I have a good answer for that. I think I've hit my own personal Peter Principle on this matter.
I am, though open to your suggestions.
Is there a "Dodger Way" anymore. And if not, how can we build it back to its former glory? Is our minor league scouting and development where it should be? Who are the core players, and who are the temporary placeholders?
I think the Dodgers refocus on scouting is obvious, but is it enough? I fear that the recent haul of high-priced players signed to long term contracts is a potential barrier to success, and wonder who in that bunch would I really consider our core. (And yes, I would even question whether Matt Kemp should really be in our long term future plans) More importantly, I am starting to believe that the "Dodger Way" is no more. And the philosophical ideals behind it need to be reworked and refashioned into something more meaningful.
But, how to do it?
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