Monday, July 6, 2009

16 Forwards: Hickey's gone . . .

"He just thought there was a gut feeling that he could go some place and have a better shot to play more right away." -- Coach Mike Eaves regarding Chris Hickey
Entering this offseason with a glut of forwards for the coming year, I was going to do a little series of posts titled "19 Forwards", "18 Forwards", "17 Forwards", etc., because it seemed clear that something(s) had to give. But then Tom Bardis left the program and Tyler Barnes was delayed a year, and we were down to 17 forwards before I had a chance to write my 19 or 18 forwards posts.

But at 17 forwards, I actually thought things had stabilized. Yeah, 5 forwards seemed like an awful lot to be sitting each night, but I looked at the roster and didn't really see anyone else leaving. Admittedly, I didn't really think very hard about Hickey. My mistake.

And now, after hearing chatter over on uscho about someone (possibly Hickey) leaving the program, it appears that Hickey is in fact leaving.

You know, I liked Chris Hickey, and I know Gandalf liked him a lot, and I'm kinda bummed about the whole thing. (Well, bummed might not be the right word, but I'm trying to be diplomatic.) Good luck to Chris wherever he ends up.

By the way, Baggot's article also talks about the aforementioned Bardis and Barnes situations. I find Mike Eaves' quotes interesting. (Again, interesting might not be the correct word here.)

Regarding Bardis:
"[W]e just didn’t see him being able to play here with his skill set."
Which begs the question: wasn't the coaching staff familiar with his skill set before he became a Badger?

Regarding Barnes:

“I think we tried to manage it in the proper fashion,” Eaves said. “We met face-to-face and explained to him what our situation was and how it would affect (him). It’s not an easy thing to.

“They sensed we were trying to be up-front and honest. At first, I’m sure it’s an inital shock, then you try to take a look at it.

“That was a big part of our talk — would another year (in juniors) benefit him? In Tyler’s situation, we think that it will because he’s going to be in a lot more responsible situation with his junior team.”