It’s on Fronts Talk that there’s a rumour that Larry Mavety is going to come back next season — it’s not clear that he would come back as general manager or as GM-coach.

Neither one would be satisfactory. The Frontenacs’ late-season improvement and the move the K-Rock Pot built up a lot of goodwill, but remember, Mavety is the one who dug them such a big hole in the first place. The man has to be allowed to retire, for the benefit of all concerned.

Doug Springer, I would squash this rumour as soon as possible and say that you’re looking for a new coach and GM.


Sunday, March 16, 2008: Brampton 5, Kingston 3

Friday, March 14, 2008: Kingston 9, Sudbury 2

Wednesday, March 12, 2008: Ottawa 2, Kingston 1

Real life got in the way of commenting on the last three games, which is no great loss. The Frontenacs are done for the season; Nathan Moon got to 35 goals and it looks like Josh Brittain will be a decent draft choice.

There’s a lot to be done. The Frontenacs need an overhaul top to bottom. Let them know what you think; don’t be happy just with a coaching change.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008: Kingston 6, Oshawa 2

If there’s a more messed-up team that’s begging to get swept four straight in the first round than the Gennies, they aren’t playing in any junior league on this planet. For all their talent, Oshawa can’t skate their way out of a wet paper bag.

The Fronts assured that Larry Mavety won’t go out on a sub-50-point season. Now, is Mav retiring? That’s the rumour over at Fronts Talk, but already people are figuring they’ll stay in house and give the job to the long-time assistant, Tony Cimmellaro.

It’s hard to feel encouraged by that speculation. Cimmellaro’s been part of the losing culture that’s come to be identified with the Mavety/Springer regime. If Mavety is going to retire, the Frontenacs should change their coaching staff and their personnel people lock, stock and barrel, as much as is humanly possible.

Everyone see that The Hockey News was showing some love to Fronts forward Josh Brittain, talking him up as a possible second-rounder?

Josh Brittain – How about a 6-foot-4 power forward who will score 30 goals in his sophomore season on a Kingston Frontenacs team that won’t come close to making the playoffs? He has been outstanding since Larry Mavety took over behind the bench. Along with his scoring touch, Brittain has shown a grit and toughness that were absent from his game with Bruce Cassidy as coach …Much like Eric O’Dell (from the Sudbury Wolves), we may be underselling him in the second round, but since their teams won’t make the playoffs, we’re hopeful they’ll be selected for the Canadian under-18 team to further examine their potential.

(Some of us who have long memories will note that Drew Doughty and Zach Bogosian are listed as the third and fourth-best Canadian-based prospects — and Larry Mavety drafted Brittain when both those guys were available two years ago.)

Sunday, March 9, 2008: Les Frontenacs six, Les Soixante-Septs trois

Pass. Weird how the Frontenacs could never win in Ottawa when they had a decent team and now they can’t lose there with a non-playoff team.

Four games to go; if the Fronts beat Sudbury on Friday that should clinch the No. 4 draft choice. This is just the lull before the real serious stuff in the off-season — will Doug Springer come to his senses and change the coach and GM and who will the Frontenacs draft.

Ideally, they would take a defenceman high, but between this draft being top-heavy with forwards and players who will go the USHL or college route, it’s hard zeroing in on a player who you can say, without a doubt, would actually thrive with the Frontenacs. (Plus it’s always creepy to talk about 15-year-old kids like they’re commodities.)

It would be nice if Erik Gudbranson, a big defenceman from Ottawa, could fall into the Fronts’ laps, but Mike Foligno would have to go into a coma in Sudbury before that would happen.

Friday, March 7, 2008: Kingston 5, Oshawa 4 (shootout)

The weather outside was frightful, but the game was sure delightful, with the Fronts scoring twice in the third to force prolongation.

There’s been some optimistism about ’08-09, since the team probably has played better than .500 hockey since mid-January. Has Larry Mavety really coached for “next year” or to make “this year” more respectable and try to quell the calls for his firing?

Larry Mavety has given the bulk of starts in goal to an overage netminder. The team leader in ice-time, Justin Wallingford, is an overager. Four of the forwards are ’88s, meaning at least one or two guys among Kyle Bochek, Andris Dzerins, Matt Kang and Kyle Paige will not come back in September. (It’s pretty rare for imports to play an overage year, and Dzerins has played his best hockey since New Year’s — when the Fronts started to play better. It’s hard to imagine that a player with Kang’s skills wouldn’t get a good offer from an ECHL or CHL team, or maybe try Canadian university hockey.)

The Front’s improved record also has to be taken with a grain of salt due to the feeling that the Eastern Conference, once you get past Belleville and Brampton, is a complete sinkhole. 

By the way, the Fronts are one point behind Owen Sound for “overtaking” them and sliding from the No. 3 to the the No. 4 draft choice. They also have two games in hand. 

Thursday, March 6, 2008: Peterborough 6, Kingston 4

It’s really, when you think about it, an accomplishment to miss the playoffs in a league where 16 of 20 teams make it. The Petes went ahead for good with the dreaded goal in the final minute of the second period and got an empty-netter in the final minute.

The Fronts Talk gang are pretty ticked at some of the genius coaching moves. Larry Mavety decided to shorten the bench (if only he had a general manager who could give him some more reliable fourth players) and also pulled the Goalie of the Future, Mavric Parks, after a 3-3 tie through 20 minutes.

That proves again that any talk of rebuilding so long as Doug Springer owns the team and Larry Mavety is involved in any way, shape, or form is just a sham. They’re just eager to try to scrape their way by and treat being in the top 80 percent of teams in the league as an actual accomplishment.