Vancouver put an end to the Thunder's season, and now decisions must be made on the team's players and coach.
DAVID LA VAQUE
Thunder interim head coach Don Gramenz had much to say about Minnesota's first playoff appearance in four years.
He talked about how Vancouver's goal only three minutes into Sunday's match disrupted the Thunder's game plan. And he lauded his players for scoring three second-half goals. When questions turned to his future with the club, Gramenz offered much less.
"I'll meet with [team president] Manny Lagos and see what my role will be," he said. "It's a great time to be part of this club. If we can get a lot of these guys back, I think we'll only be better."
Minnesota's season ended with a 4-3 victory over Vancouver, but the Whitecaps won the two-game, total-goal series 5-4. Now decisions must be made about players and Gramenz, who took over for Amos Magee when the Thunder was in last place at midseason and coaxed a playoff run.
Thunder general manager Djorn Buchholz expects "eight or nine" players will not be in a Thunder uniform next season. He said the team "would like to have a coach in place" by the league meetings scheduled for late November.
Will it be Gramenz, a former Thunder assistant coach and Thunder player? Players believe he should get the job.
"Absolutely. Without question," captain Jeremiah Bass said. "I'm a fan of Donny."
Brian Kallman also showed support for Gramenz.
"We could have helped his cause by winning a few more games," he said. "But I would vote him back."