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It feels good to talk about how well run the Redwings are as an organization. You'll find no shortage of praise for Ken Holland or Brian Burke and the like. It's much more fun to rip apart the organizations that just don't seem to get it. So in the spirit of being cruel (summer is tough on a hockey fanatic), here are the Top 5 Worst run NHL franchises.

#5 - NY Rangers
Since winning the Cup in 1994 and ending the 50 year drought, the Rangers seem intent on making a run at that record. Sather almost single-handedly forced the cap issue by offering ludicrous salaries to over the hill veterans. Since the lockout, he hasn't done much better, offering bloated contracts to Holik, Gomez, Redden, and now Gaborik. Any reputation he had for his work in Edmonton has been entirely reversed. There are no signs on the horizon that things are getting better here. If it weren't for Lundqvist in net, the Rangers wouldn't even be a playoff contender. Change is needed in New York.

#4 - LA Kings
LA has been preaching the youth movement for over a decade now. Some of the young guys back then have already retired, and they have yet to see a squad worth the price of entry. Lombardi has been true to his plan over the past few years for the most part, only straying occasionally to sign a veteran or two. Still, the Kings don't seem much closer to being relevant than they were in 2004. How long to King fans have to wait for the dream to be realized. How long can Lombardi hold off the wolves with the promise of better things to come? Don't expect a sudden rise to power this year.


#3 - Montreal Canadiens
How can a team fall so far, so fast? Or was it that 2007-08 was just a fluke? The Canadiens haven't made a serious run at the Cup since they won it as major underdogs in 1993. For an organization that once prided itself as the rightful owners of the Stanley Cup, they sure haven't shown it to anyone under the age of 50. Bob Gainey had one really bad year in 2008-09, from his handling of the coaching situation, to barely making the playoffs only to be totally embarrassed, to allowing his team to be completely dismantled and put back together with whatever leftovers he could overpay for on July 1st. Was this part of a plan? If so, who is he working for? Boston?

#2 - NY Islanders
It was a tough call not making the Islanders #1. Good thing for Mr. Wang and company that the Lightning are around. It's tough to recall anything this franchise has done right in the past 20 years (and drafting Tavares doesn't count - that was a no brainer that only came about because they were so inept this year). You can start with Yashin, then move on to the DiPietro contract, throw in the coaching / GM fiasco of last summer, and sprinkle in a prospect firesale that netted two months of Ryan Smyth's services. All told, John Tavares had better be that good.

#1 - Tampa Bay Lightning
The future was looking bright for the Tampa Bay Lightning in the summer of 2004. The last five years have been a total disaster. It started with mismanagement of contracts in the off season, resulting in the loss of Khabibulin. Since then, no goalie to wear the Bolts logo has been worthy of the crease. Things took a turn for the bizarre last summer with the new management team, who went on a teenage girl shopping spree, overpaying for every available player on the market. Some of the defensive signings this summer may start to right the ship, but as for now, the Lightning hold the title as the undisputed worst run franchise in the NHL.

Honorable Mention:

Minnesota Wild for giving fans an expansion team for almost a decade now.
Atlanta Thrashers for failing to win a single playoff game in their existence
Toronto Maple Leafs for many reasons. Burke seems to be righting the ship, which kept them off the list.
July 25, 2009 3:06 PM ET | Delete
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g
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July 25, 2009 7:11 PM ET | Delete
Message Posthaha WOW...MTL on your list of worst run franchises??? haha i had my laugh for the day considering there are many teams like Phoenix, Tampa, Florida, and the list goes on who dont even belong in the NHL...id say you should base running a franchise on the money it brings in and the habs bring in Millions and millions...and just sold for like 500 million!!
July 25, 2009 8:49 PM ET | Delete
I think he's talking about how the team is manage as per on ice product and success.I do disagree with Minnesota even being mentioned however. 3 Playoff appearances since they started in the league, with one being to the conference finals. Out of all the recent expansions the Wild have done the best by far.
July 25, 2009 9:29 PM ET | Delete
your a fool
July 25, 2009 9:30 PM ET | Delete
where are the leafs that franchise has ben a joke for years...and lets not mention the huricanes
July 25, 2009 10:05 PM ET | Delete
this is just stupid, how can a team like Phoenix or Florida not be on this list, and the Habs have had a few rough years, but they do have 24 cups, cant be run that badly!!!
July 25, 2009 10:24 PM ET | Delete
July 25, 2009 11:25 PM ET | Delete
This list is a joke, Toronto, Pho, Fla all not even mentioned. Mont??? You have to be kidding
July 26, 2009 9:06 AM ET | Delete
1.) NYI2.) Atlanta 3.) Florida4.)Buffalo5.)CoyotesOttawa and Tampa just miss the 5 spot
July 26, 2009 9:10 AM ET | Delete
My reasoning? NYI is obvious. Atlanta blew everything to make the playoffs once and set everything back to the beginning doing so. Florida is in constant turn over, and never seems to do better on the ice. Buffalo is consistently losing their top players because they choose not to have talks well in advance. Yotes are obvious, however they have built a great young core of players who can make a huge splash if giving someone who can make them set up.
July 26, 2009 9:13 AM ET | Delete
Tampa is close to the top 5 but not in because they flip flop way too much and need only one voice, but they should be better this season as things have settled. Ottawa is more a personal opinion, I hate what has become of this team which was once a cup contender. Bryan Murray is to blame for a lot of it since he's been GM.
July 26, 2009 11:48 AM ET | Delete
Bulllshit
July 26, 2009 3:54 PM ET | Delete
Seems like you're really underestimating the LA Kings. They have a ton of young talent at reasonable prices and veterans who understand what it means to win a game or two of important hockey. I think that if the goaltending can hold up, they've got what it takes to make the lower end of the Western Conference playoffs.
July 26, 2009 7:41 PM ET | Delete
This list is horrible. FLA,TOR, ATL, PHO, and NYI. There is your five in no particular order. Good try tho.
July 26, 2009 10:46 PM ET | Delete
I love how offended people get when someone bashes their team lol
July 26, 2009 11:24 PM ET | Delete
Someone tell where Anton Babchuk is? Damnit.....Anton Babchukkkkkkkk, where the heck is heeeeeeeeeeee?????????????????????
July 27, 2009 12:56 AM ET | Delete
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July 27, 2009 4:05 PM ET | Delete
Oh thats great, finally someone answers my Anton Babchuk question--but they dont know how to operate a computer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ITS POST, THEN REFRESH FOLKS!!!!
July 27, 2009 5:54 PM ET | Delete
July 27, 2009 6:50 PM ET | Delete
I'm a habs fan and agree they have been poorly operated.. there are just so many examples including how poorly they handled the Saku Koivu situation.. this team better not do what Tampa Bay did last year... get a bunch of random guys together and just bomb the season
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