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Category: Toronto-Maple-Leafs

Burke Now Quoting Shakespeare

from Ron MacLean of CBC,

I was hoping to have Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke join me to answer question we’ve been raising on the show, but he declined.

I asked if I could give the exact quote he gave me for his decision to opt out. He said no. After giving him my views on the importance of the dialogue, Brian said “Explain it, then. I have no obligation here. Write and say whatever you want.” That would be fine, except that saying and writing what we want is the reason Brian’s not coming on the show.

He made it clear he did not like what has been said on our show. I explained a few bits about the balance we’ve brought, and explained the value of his appearance to our show and his fans.

Brian quipped, “Methinks, the lady doth protest too much”. Got me there. Funny it was on his mind in the hours after his vote of confidence for Ron Wilson.

more from Ron on today’s HNIC…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: brian+burke, ron+maclean

Toronto Still Paying For Kessel Trade

from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,

If the season ended today, the Bruins would land another lottery pick, since the Leafs entered play Saturday 28th overall in the 30-team league.

“If it happens, it happens,” Seguin said, breaking into a wry grin.

“We’ll see how it works out.”

Thus far, it has worked out well.

All because Burke, rightly or wrongly, believed so strongly in Phil Kessel.

When Burke coughed up first-round picks in 2010 and 2011 plus a second-round selection in order to snag Kessel, it never entered his mind his Leafs would finish in the bottom five of the 2009-10 standings.

That being the case, he must be in a state of shock to find his team dwelling among the bottom feeders for a second-consecutive season.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

No Changes Planned In Toronto

from Darren Dreger of TSN,

There are no plans for drastic change in Toronto, including the firing of head coach Ron Wilson.

“No coaching change,” said Maple Leafs GM, Brian Burke via e-mail, no doubt frustrated by his team’s play and the predictable line of questioning that inevitably follows each Leafs’ loss….

“Have the players quit on Wilson?” “No,” said a source close to the team.

Brian Burke and Maple Leafs’ management continue to work the phones in search of a trade, but there is no deal at the moment the team believes is even remotely worth considering.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

What Can Toronto And Ottawa Do?

from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,

In Toronto, they chanted “Fire Wilson!” and threw jerseys on the ice. In Ottawa, as the players walked off, fans threw their ticket stubs at them.

The most dangerous thing any franchise can do is make an emotional judgement. It can devastate a team.

Both Brian Burke and Bryan Murray have been trying for weeks to do something. Unless some magical move appears out of nowhere, there’s no help coming that way. Look at the trades being made: someone else’s salary cap problem, someone else’s extra player. There doesn’t appears to be a true difference-maker available


Filed in: NHL Teams, Ottawa Senators, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Late Evening Line

Whether or not (Ron) Wilson still has his players’ support, however, may not matter, as almost no NHL bench boss has ever survived as many losses as this team has in the past 188 games and not neared their end.

The only pressing question if a coaching change does come in the near future?

Will it help?

-James Mirtle of the Globe and Mail after the Leafs lost to the Oilers.  Read more on the Leafs.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Well, We Can’t Let That Happen

from Robert Cribb and Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star,

If Rogers Communications seizes control of the Toronto Maple Leaf empire, it will mean the likely death of CBC’s Hockey Night In Canada, industry analysts say.

“It would start a seismic shift in the way hockey rights are acquired in Canada and, at the very least, start off one of the most profound bidding wars we’ve ever seen for the NHL broadcasting rights,” said Steve Billinger, CBC’s general manager of digital programming and business development ming until he left the national broadcaster two months ago.

“CBC could well be the one left at the table . . . CBC doesn’t have the money to compete and even it did, it would receive very hard questions about whether that’s the right way to spend it.”


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL Media, Hockey Broadcasting, CBC HNIC, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Gagne’s Return Sparks Bolts, Plus a Few Thoughts on Pat Burns

I’ve tagged him the Lightning’s “wild card” all season, even before the neck injury that cost him 18 games. After a pointless first six games in a Lightning uniform, it was hard to forecast what Simon Gagne might bring to Tampa Bay this season. After all, recent history tells us that productivity elsewhere may not instantly equate to success alongside Vincent Lecavalier in Tampa (see: Tanguay, Alex, both before and after his single season as a Bolt). Add in that lingering injury – the latest in a career full of them for Gagne – and there is still really no telling what the former Flyer might be capable of for the long haul.

But, for a night, the wait was well worth it for both player and team, as Gagne lifted the Lightning to a 4-3 overtime decision in Toronto with the decisive tally in the extra frame.

Lecavalier remains out for the immediate future, so whether these two end up meshing as intended is still very much up in the air. And, of course, sustained health for Gagne is always a question mark (though, really, isn’t it for all of us?) But if Gagne’s impact on the Bolts last night is any indication as to what he might bring to the table for Tampa Bay in the long run, as my ever-optimistic Bolts Beat co-host, Mike Corcoran, suggests ad nauseam, maybe there really is something special coming together for the Lightning this season.

Continue Reading »

Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Montreal Canadiens, New Jersey Devils, Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: pat+burns, simon+gagne, simon+gagne, vincent+lecavalier

Leafs May Have A New Owner

from Robert Cribb and Tony VanAlphen of the Toronto Star,

In what would be the biggest transaction in Canadian sport history, Rogers is in talks to buy the Toronto Maple Leafs in a deal worth more than $1 billion, sources said Tuesday.

The sale would include the Raptors, Toronto FC soccer club and the Marlies, the Maple Leafs’ minor league hockey team.

Buying a majority stake in Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment from the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan would transform Rogers, which already owns the Toronto Blue Jays, into one of the most powerful sports enterprises in North America.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Wait.  Just Wait

from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,

Now, whether Burke can find his own alternate route looks uncertain, or even doubtful now, but rebuilding projects always look this way. Three years after drafting Alex Ovechkin, the Caps had 70 points. But George McPhee wasn’t fired. It’s been four years since the St. Louis Blues bottomed out and took Erik Johnson first overall, and after a fast start it appears the Blues are likely to be fighting for a playoff spot again this season. Don’t hear anybody calling for John Davidson’s head.

These things take time, yet so many want to scream “Failure!” at the Burke regime after just two years. Make no sense.

Similarly, reaching final conclusions on Phil Kessel, the closest thing the Leafs have to a franchise forward, makes no sense either. Bill Watters, the former Leaf executive and radio analyst on A640, called Kessel a “dog” repeatedly on the air yesterday, and maybe he’s right. Ol’ Wilbur has been around the game a long time and talks to a long of folks in the sport, so I’m certainly not dismissing his opinion.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

Pressure Building In Toronto

from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,

It’s easy to sit there and say, “Fire the coach!” - something I’ve never really been comfortable writing about. (When asked a couple of weeks ago if (Ron) Wilson thought his job was in jeopardy, he replied that we’re already 0-for-50 with those predictions. He politely declined comment about this particular situation.) But you have to look at this objectively. In the aftermath of Saturday’s 3-0 defeat in Ottawa, I couldn’t help but think that Wilson’s got trouble, simply because Brian Burke may have to do something.

You can feel the pressure in Leaf land. The frustration is everywhere, from ownership on down to the players. Burke’s tried everything, from seismic changes (Kessel, Phaneuf, Giguere) to rushing Nazem Kadri faster than the GM wanted. Kadri’s call-up was specifically intended to wake the roster.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com


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