Neilson Returns

There was a bit of a surprise sprung on the fans of the Panthers this morning, as the club announced that coach Corey Neilson will be staying in his role for next season (official website story). While the news may be not so much of a surprise to some, the timing of it is, in that there is still over two months of the season remaining.

Personally I’m very happy, we need stability in the coaching, it has proved fruitful at other clubs in the Elite League, especially Coventry with Paul Thompson, and I think Neilson has done well enough to deserve another shot. His ability to ice balanced forward lines was a step forward, however he will need to work on his defence and initial netminder selection for 2009/10. I firmly believe that had we had a tighter defensive unit we would be streets ahead at the top of the league.

The other worry is that our ability to lose important games to the so-called ‘lower’ clubs continues as it has always done, take last Sunday’s 3-2 defeat at Hull as an example, and this has to improve next season. On the positive side, our record against the rest of the ‘big four’ teams has improved, but even that could still be better.

My enthusiasm to the news was dampened somewhat though, when I listened to an interview with Neilson by General Manager Gary Moran (Panthers Radio – Official Website). The final minute of the interview is, quite frankly, cringe worthy. It basically involves Neilson telling Moran how wonderful he and Neil Black are through Moran’s heavily loaded questions. This worried me as it suggests to me Moran & Black are meddling in team matters and Neilson is the stooge allowing them to do it. I genuinely hope I’m way off the mark on that one, but past history makes me nervous.


1 Response to “Neilson Returns”

  1. 1 grumpyminer January 23, 2009 at 1:32 am

    You noticed it too,loaded questions. My reaction was as yours Jono. Meddling!!
    The slack D and inability to beat lesser teams are perhaps the same problem. Do the D jump into the play to get the points up, then get caught out of position by a turnover (for example)? Then having to chase the game are caught out again. The coach and captain have better games against bigger teams.


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