So, you’ve built a hockey team that came within three victories of winning it all! What are you going to do now?? Well, if you’re John Muckler, you head for the nearest unemployment office.
In a move that reveals, yet again, the loving, warm and fuzzy face of professional sports, our Benevolent And All Knowing Overlord has encouraged (former)GM John Muckler to “pursue other opportunities outside of the organization”. And by “encouraged” I of course mean, “standing in office with shotgun screaming GET THE HELL OFF MY LAWN!”) The token offer of another role with the team (Hey Mucks! Those towels dry yet?), having been refused, Emperor Magnificent is free to buy Bolivia as a retirement gift, shake his former serf’s hand, and send him on his way.
While there are many theories floating around as to why Melnyk did this, most of them eloquently enunciated here, this one is by far, the most amusing. Apparently, since His Overlordship doesn't actually know how old Muckler is, trusting him to run the franchise for another year is impossible:
Now no one will admit this, but Muckler's age also has a hand in this. Reports are he's 73, but there's no record of that given that the hall of records in the town he was born, Paris, Ontario, burned down many years ago and anyone officially checking on Muckler's true age was simply out of luck. There are reasons to believe he's considerably older than 73 and though that shouldn't matter, it's likely that it does.
Of course it matters! How could it not? One day Mucks is in heated negotiations with a player's cockroach agent, and the next he forgets he was trying to cook scrambled eggs in the toaster while rambling on about last night's whiskey jag with Connie Smythe. Meanwhile, you find out that he's signed the starting goalie to a ten year contract. Madness! But at least it explains his proclivity for chiseling contracts onto stone tablets.
So goodbye and Godspeed John. May it forever be 1984 wherever you may roam.
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