Man, I feel for Calgary's fans. I sometimes feel sorry for myself for cheering on a team that disappoints in the postseason, but what if you had one of the top goalies in the game, one of the best scoring forwards, and a great defense, and squandered all of that every year?
I'm a moderate fan of Darryl Sutter, mostly because he helped pull the Sharks franchise up from being a clown show to being a hard-working playoff upset-maker. But his limitations as a coach eventually became too hard to ignore (disinterest in practicing the power play, a lack of sophistication on offense, a harsh and sarcastic personality), and he was fired a bit before Dean Lombardi got shown the door.
But what has he done as a GM? Hiring Mike Keenan maybe was a nod of respect to Darryl's former boss, but it wasn't a good hockey decision in the post-lockout NHL. He apparently can't manage the salary cap very well, probably because he doesn't seem like the kind of guy that likes making decisions for primarily economic reasons, and he doesn't seem to like delegating responsibilities to specialists.
Now the Flames are missing the playoffs, Iginla and Kipper are a year older, they don't have Dion Phaneuf any more, and they have a lot of money tied up in their current roster. So for all the whining here about the Sharks underperformance (and I'm guilty of it as much as anybody), we could have it much, much worse.