Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
So this week the MLSE board must do one of two things: Give Ferguson a contract extension and thus a meaningful vote of confidence and the freedom to do what he believes needs to be done, or fire Ferguson, and give a new person – Bowman, Smith, Healy, Campbell, whoever – enough time to evaluate the roster and organization and then canvass the entire league for transactions that might improve the club’s standing next season.
The silly chatter about the Leafs still being in the fight for a playoff berth has finally been exploded, although smart hockey people understood that reality two weeks to a month ago.
So we’re talking about next season now. Period. No more there’s-a-lot-of-hockey-still-to-be-played nonsense, okay?
And therefore we’re talking about something being done. This week.
from the Toronto Sun,
Turning the Maple Leafs into Stanley Cup winners would take all of Scott Bowman’s Hall of Fame acumen.
But the 74-year-old is not dismissing the chance that something can still be worked out after preliminary talks to bring him aboard as a senior advisor to John Ferguson last summer failed to click….
Asked by MacLean if he’d revisit a Toronto offer one day, Bowman basically said he would be willing to discuss it. It would be hard to leave the Red Wings, but he would cross that bridge if he came to it.
from Lance Hornby of the Toronto Sun,
With his job on the line, possibly as early as tonight’s game in San Jose, Maurice refuted talk the team has quit on him. Midway through his second season with the Leafs, he has another year on his contract.
“We still have dominant men in that room who are competing,” a tense-looking Maurice said after the last-place Kings toyed with the Leafs 5-2 the night before, the club’s 10th loss in the past 12 games. “You always have to have that fight in you and when you don’t, that’s when it’s done.”
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
It appears John Ferguson will not serve out the final months of his contract as general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
In light of the Maple Leafs’ most recent losing streak, which culminated in a 5-2 loss Thursday night to the last-place team in the NHL, the Los Angeles Kings, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment president Richard Peddie said Friday morning that the board will be discussing Ferguson’s future very soon. His contract expires in June.
from Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail,
..No, right now the best thing the Leafs can do is stay the course and continue to lose games with staggering regularity. If they keep it up, they’ll be in the draft lottery for the first time ever; and perhaps even in a position to select No. 1 for the first time since the Wendel Clark draft in 1985. That didn’t turn out so bad, did it Leaf Nation?
Forever and ever, no matter who is running the show, the temptation in the Maple Leaf front office is to go for the quick fix, which results in the mess you’ve seen lately. They end up with a team good enough to tease and flirt with success, without ever really having the talent to legitimately challenge for a championship.
From the Minnesota Wild,
Minnesota Wild President and General Manager Doug Risebrough today announced the National Hockey League (NHL) club has activated center Mikko Koivu from injured reserve and that center Dominic Moore has been claimed off waivers by the Toronto Maple Leafs.
added 1:27pm, from TSN, the Leafs have recalled goaltender Justin Pogge.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The way the Leafs are playing, the figurative end of their season is almost at hand. In the short term, Ferguson could fire Maurice, who cannot get his players to perform. But he, too, was not talking after the game, although he spent a lot of time around the Leaf dressing room engaged in a long conversation on his cellphone before telling the media he would have nothing to say.
Even if he is contemplating firing Maurice, Ferguson is in a difficult position. He would have to clear that move with Peddie and the MLSE board of directors. Since it is clear the board will dump Ferguson if the Leafs miss the playoffs, the directors may tell the GM there is no sense firing the coach because there will be an entire house-cleaning come spring.
Beginning with tonight’s game between the Los Angeles Kings and the Toronto Maple Leafs, fans watching on Leafs TV or via NHL Centre Ice will be able to participate in a five-game contest that involves interaction with live hockey. Powered by LiveHive’s NanoGaming technology, the game—called Leafs TV Game Master—allows fans to play along while they watch, accumulate points, and qualify for prizes. Players make such predictions as who will get the next goal, as well as answer trivia questions, and chat with other fans.
more. wonder if it will allow you to make trades too?
from Bob McKenzie of TSN,
The price on Keith Tkachuk was a first, a second and a third round pick. On Ryan Smyth, it was two prospects - Robert Nilsson and Ryan O’Marra - and a first rounder. Heck, an injured Todd Bertuzzi got Florida a good prospect in Shawn Matthias and a second round pick.
Sundin, if he were made available, would blow all of those right out of the water. If the Leafs didn’t get two or three credible players or prospects and the same number of significant draft choices, John Ferguson would be accused of not doing his job.
Which, funny enough, is what some people will say if the Leafs don’t try to make a Sundin trade happen before the deadline.
from the OC Register,
Ducks coach Randy Carlyle hails from Sudbury, Ontario, the home province of Toronto, so it is safe to assume he was a Toronto Maple Leafs fan growing up rather than a Montreal Canadiens follower.
“Those were the days when it was French vs. English in northern Ontario,” Carlyle said. “It made for a natural rivalry.”...
“They’re easily the most recognizable hockey franchise,” he said. “Some people might argue Montreal. Having played there a number of years ago, and with the branding that’s taken place in the game, Toronto is front and center.”
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.
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