The year the Saskatoon Blades went to the Memorial Cup with Darren Dietz and Dalton Thrower on the blue line, and Lorne Molleken behind the bench, was a tumultuous one. There were rumours that there was a clash between Dalton and the head coach, causing the prospect to be benched, injured in a rumoured dressing room fight, and traded in the off-season to the Vancouver Giants.
From watching the Sportsnet documentaries “Road to the Memorial Cup” in 2013, I got a sense that the coach was old-school, more profane than communicative, and that you wouldn’t want to be on his bad side. I posted many times that he seemed to hammer home the point that players had to play hard, 100%, but I never saw him at the chalkboard or discussing systems or strategy.
In the past couple of months, two players have resigned from the Giants and gone home to play at a lower level. One player demanded and received a trade. Now, word is that today two more players have quit the team.
Meanwhile, the Giants are sinking like a stone. Based on what the journos are writing though, Lorne Molleken isn't the problem.
So as ready as I was to cast stones, blame the firebrand coach for the troubles at the Pacific Coliseum, there is more to the story, actually more backstory than anything.