The owner spends $200M on two players, the general manager has built a vault of what is considered to be excellent young talent, some of whom are in the lineup currently and the team has scored 20 goals in 9 games (2.22 gpg) compared to 166 in 82 games (2.02) last season. That .2 gpg works out to 16 goals on a regular season, which may be an additional 4-5 points. Needless to say, 4-5 points is not going to get this team into the playoffs.

So, what is it? Personnel? System? Luck?

If it's the actual players on the ice, it's Chuck Fletcher or Brent Flahr's fault. If it's the performance of the players on the ice, then it's on them. We can't fault Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu, Dany Heatley or Tom Gilbert. They are doing exactly what we expected them to do. 30 points from the top four scorers in 9 games is on par with what we would expect from top NHL performers.

Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Mikael Granlund, Devin Setoguchi, Cal Clutterbuck, Matt Cullen and Kyle Brodziak are all dramatically underperforming. Either we are expecting too much from these players and they aren't who we thought they were (which would be the fault of the front office) or they are playing like crap and need to pick it up.