Wednesday, March 7, 2007

CBJ GM Doug MacLean on Forbes List of Best GM's in Sports

Forbes magazine recently released their rankings of the 98 best General Managers in professional sports. GMs from every major professional sport appear on the list, including our own Doug MacLean, who came in at 52nd.

Let it be noted that the rankings are based on two major statistics- Winning Improvement and Payroll Containment. Both stats are indexed to 100, meaning that the numbers for a particular person on the list don't really mean a whole lot until you compare them to other people on the list- though you can see it as a rating of 130 means that GM has helped the team win 30% more games, or a rating of 72 means the team has won 28% fewer games. The payroll containment works the same way, so a 108 means that the salary is 8% more than previous years. Also, only GMs with 3 or more years of experience were rated, which may explain why certain teams (such as the Calgary Flames) do not appear anywhere on the list.

Obtaining the #1 overall rating is Kevin McHale of the Minnesota Timberwolves (NBA). The top NHL performer, coming in at #2, is Jay Feaster of the Tampa Bay Lightening. The GMs of the New Jersey Devils and Atlanta Thrashers also appear in the top 10. The highest rank GM in the Central Division is David Poile, GM for the Nashville Predators.

It's important to remember that having a "good" GM doesn't guarantee success- the GM of the St. Louis Cardinals (who won the 2006 World Series) is ranked 46, and the Carolina Hurricanes (who won last year's Stanley Cup) is rated 17th. The GM is responsible for managing the team as a business- one that is in pursuit of profit, not necessarily a championship. Winning a title is a satisfying and profitable reward, but it is not the primary objective of the General Manager. That said, a good GM will sign the right players at the right price in order to give the team the best chance of winning, as well as maintaining the profitability of the franchise.

So does Doug MacLean deserve his 52nd rank on the list? He has a winning improvement rating of 121 and a payroll containment of 76. (Meaning 21% more wins, 24% less payroll) Let's hear your thoughts in the comments.

1 comment:

Thomas said...

What is the difference between Fortune and BusinessWeek?