Broncos Buyers or Sellers?

Mark Lamb

Mark Lamb

As the Regina Pats sold off several of their key veterans on Monday every general manager in the Western Hockey League was faced with questions about their plans for Saturday’s trade deadline.

The Swift Current Broncos aren’t looking to go all-in to win or have a fire sale as they approach this year’s deadline.

“We know we’re not in a position of a Brandon or Medicine Hat,” said Broncos Coach/GM Mark Lamb. “Everyone has a different agenda. I think we’re just right in the middle. We’re not buyers. We’re not sellers.”

“We want to improve our team. If we can do that we will do that. If not we have to keep plowing ahead.”

If the Broncos do make a move it would likely be one for a player that could help beyond just the remainder of this season.

“Something that is going to be back,” Lamb said. “Something that fills a hole. It’s going to be a tough trade deadline. It’s going to be tough for a lot of teams. You’ve got to see what you’re up against.”

“We have a lot of good pieces to our team. I think we can beat anybody just like anybody on any given night. We have to be very realistic about what we’re doing.”

Swift Current hasn’t waited until the trade deadline to add pieces to their roster this season. They’ve brought in veterans Ayrton Nikkel, Carter Rigby, Linden Penner and Griffin Foulk since the puck first dropped on the regular season in September.

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About shawnmullin

Play by Play Broadcaster for the WHL's Swift Current Broncos on 94.1 FM The Eagle.
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One Response to Broncos Buyers or Sellers?

  1. james says:

    Sad. It appears we’re living in our own version of the movie “Groundhog Day”.

    When Eakins was traded all we heard was how the Bronco organization was turning a new leaf and would no longer be satisfied with merely making the playoffs. A couple of “one and done” playoffs later and what do we look forward to this year? Another mediocre club that, but for the hybrid playoff format, would be in danger of not making the playoffs. Instead, because of the vagaries of the seeding system there is a real possibility of a first round victory over a recently gutted Regina. And then what? Our management says ” I think we can beat anybody just like anybody on any given night.” Really? I mean, yes, on any given night one team can beat another. But for four nights in a seven game series? Different story. And seriously, we’re to believe it’s just as likely we’re going to win as Brandon or Medicine Hat or Red Deer, all three who have significantly improved their squads? Or Kootenay, who have one the best records since Reinhardt returned? Or Calgary, a club with more depth and a better record? Truly it’s enough to make a cat laugh.

    In the 2010-2011 season, the year of the aforementioned Eakins trade, we were a team with a .375 winning percentage. Fast forward four years and we currently boast a whopping .525 winning percentage. That’s real progress, folks. In 2012-2013 Brandon finished with a .389 record. Today they are coasting along with a .775 winning percentage and look to be a powerhouse for the next several years. Why them and not us? Well, you could point to Brandon’s vastly superior drafting record. And that would be true. You could look at the aggressive, astute trades of that particular organization. And that would also be true. But ultimately, it’s Brandon’s willingness to do whatever it takes to win that persuades me. (And by winning I mean becoming a true contender.) This organization will talk about winning, but has shown repeatedly that it is more than content to scrape into the playoffs. Does anyone reading this believe for a second that Brandon’s management would let a player like Heatherington walk off into the sunset with a club with this dim of playoff prospects? Or squander the the potential return of a player like Lowry? I thought not.

    So where are we? Well, according to management we are “… not buyers. We’re not sellers.”. Neither fair nor foul. In other words, we continue to live in the Limbo of mediocrity that we’ve become accustomed to over the last 20 years. It amazes and saddens that a management team that professes such a fondness for aggressive hockey is itself so timid and craven. One of the supreme ironies, I suppose. In the meantime, we can look forward to more “moral victories”, the talk of “playoff seasoning” (the most empty of all sports cliches) and the promise of “next year” while we make yet another early, meaningless playoff exit. That and watch teams that possess a true passion for winning (Brandon, possibly Regina in a few years) actually vie for championships.

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