What’s in a face? Do the eyes betray the soul? Perhaps in poker. This in not poker.
This is hockey.
Look into this man’s eyes. This man is a killer.
What about Mike Babcock? Look in his eyes and you know that Mike Babcock will bite your fucking dick off if it helps his team win.
Dan Bylsma is a goofy looking guy, some may even say his eyes are sweet, but there is a steely reserve there and he will do what it takes to win.
Do you want to get in between this man and winning? I don’t. I don’t think he lost his hair naturally. He was practicing his death stare in the mirror one day and his hair just fell off, a casualty of his intensity.
And this man, Randy Carlyle, he of the unemployment line. He may look silly, his head horribly misshapen, but he has the distinct look of a man whose will to win supersedes ‘the bounces’.
And there are so many more examples. Google Pat Burns images, or Barry Trotz, or Dave Tippett, or Peter Laviolette. Shit, Guy Boucher looks like he just got out of prison. Joel Quennville, Jacques Lemaire, Patt Quinn, hell, Toe Blake looks like he was plotting murders with the mafia when he wasn’t coaching hockey games.
And then there is Terry Murray.
A man who consistently looks like he is about to cry. Well, that’s when he isn’t looking perplexed.
His eyes betray his character.
Terry Murray will not do whatever it takes to win. He will try, and shrug if he fails.
Look, Murray is a great thinker of the game. Maybe thinking can win baseball games.
You may say that a coach doesn’t need a killer instinct, that it is something only the player’s must possess. So OK, let’s talk about the players. Does Anze Kopitar have a killer instinct? He makes killer pancakes, but that’s not really the same thing. Does Dustin Brown? He’s got a killer Kings tattoo on his ass, but I hope he’s not flashing it around the locker room. I’m not sure that they do and I lean towards ‘NO’. I know Mike Richards has it. I know Matt Greene and Rob Scuderi have it. I am positive Penner does not. Kopitar and Brown are sponges, they are the ultimate coach’s players. Show these two a coach who has a killer instinct and I guarantee you that he will imbue it onto these players. Give them a coach that will bite a guy’s dick off and I’ll show you two players who will rub their taints in his prickless face afterwards.
Look at some of the best players in the league. Is Crosby the best in the world without that look in his eye, the one that embodies his drive and tells everyone around him that he will accept nothing short of victory? I think not. Is Jonathan Toews the most talented guy on the ice? Not by a mile. But he’s fucking scary and there is ice in his veins and a burning rage within him that is only sated by being on the winning side.
A team takes on the attitude of its coach. Are you happy with a team sucking on the tit of a man with nothing but cold milk to give, or do you want a leader who regurgitates intensity? Should our team identity be molded in the light of lucky bounces, shot mentality and third period lead scared, defensive shells? Maybe, just maybe, a mantra of domination is in order. But for one to pass on dominance one must embody the killer instinct. It must be so a part of a person that it can’t escape the eyes.