from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
If you count back eight years, to former Toronto Maple Leafs president Brian Burke's first NHL entry draft with the team, there are seven players still on the roster who were taken in those drafts from 2009 through 2016.
More than a few times over the years from 2009 to the present, as Burke was eventually replaced by Brendan Shanahan and the emphasis on developing young talent in-house increased, a lot of people would have bet Nazem Kadri would not have been one of those seven players. Kadri knows all about the doubters.
"I knew I could do it," he said recently. "I expected myself to do it. I'm not sure everyone else did."
Kadri can understand why a lot of people didn't think he would stick in the NHL. But it took him a good seven years to see why; seven years spent learning hard lessons about why sheer talent is not enough to keep you in the best hockey league in the world.