Yes folks you heard it here first. I might be available to take over JFJ’s position once he is jettisoned to the unemployment line after butchering this team. How could he possibly think that last year’s team which missed the playoffs was good enough to bring back this year almost intact – except for the additions of Jason Blake, Vesa Toskala and Mark Bell… Who approved this? They need to go too.
So lets start with how all this comes about.
First, the CBC gets it all started as they yank the Leafs from the Saturday night slot and replace them with the Ottawa Senators. I’m a huge hockey fan and would enjoy watching the Sens just as much. They are a really good, young team.
By not having the Leafs there, the slap in the face heard across the country would prompt the egos at MLSE to take action. Bye bye Peddie, Tenanbaum, JFJ and sadly the coach, Paul Maurice. Temporarily in comes a management team of former GM Cliff Fletcher and if the price is right, Scotty Bowman. Include Glenn Healy, Doug Gilmour and this group will take the roster of the Leafs and the Marlies and head into a board room only to come out with the following to do list:
1. Mats Sundin – great Leaf. Gone. To a contender as the playoffs come to other teams (not the Leafs). For at least, a good young player already on a roster, a young prospect from a farm team and a 1st round pick or 2. He’s playing his best to get the most back to the team in his trade.
2. Darcy Tucker – for a young player and a pick
3. Bryan McCabe – back to the Islanders for a young player and a pick
4. Jason Blake – for a pick
5. Andrew Raycroft – for a pick
6. Matt Stajan – for another young player
7. Mark Bell – for anything
8. Alexei Ponikerovsky – player and a pick (he’s big and has shown signs of being able to find the net, although penalty prone)
9. Nik Antripov – he’s finally exceeding expectations, so it’s a fluke (see Jason Blake) and time to go! Player from roster, young player and pick.
10. John Pohl – anything – he was JFJ’s big steal from St. Louis… Oh, how the Blues must still be reeling. LOL.
11. Wellwood, Wozniewski and Kubina we’ll take a pick for all three. The 2 defenseman must go and if Wellwood committed to getting in shape, then he can stay.
12. Vesa Toskala only if there is a fabulous offer like a young player or solid veteran.
Hal Gill – very slow and Bates Battaglia (on the farm) can go if anyone has interest in them. They shouldn’t be good enough for this team, yet they are. Sad.
You see theses spare parts can bring in the youth. The kids on the roster not playing like Moore, White, Strahlman, Kabarle (the new Captain) Steen, Deveraux, Belak (every team needs an enforcer) and Tlusty need to play… A lot, in order to assess if they are keepers or gone. They’ll figure it out.
As for the farm… I’ll never forget Ed Belfour stating that Jay Harrison was a true NHL defenseman. So what does MLSE do with him??? The farm. Bring him up. Also coming up to play, and play hard include Carlo Colaiacovo (get him healthy and a personal trainer), Simon Gamache (1st line), David Ling (the leading point getter and set-up man) and Kris Newbury – Marlies leading goal scorer (last years tough guy – why?), bring up Jeremy Williams, Robbie Earl, Darrly Boyce (a plus 18) and on defense, Bryan Muir (if he can play on the NJ Devils, he can make the Leafs). Bring up Pogge to play net, and a lot of net and this is the 2008/2009 team.
In the off season sign a few free agent veterans to teach the kids never to give up, maybe one or two with Stanley Cup rings, and only young free agents if they are young! Bring back Mats if he wants either this year or next year to end his career.
This team will compete for either last or a playoff spot, so they’ll be not better or no worse than the current bunch. Only difference is that in 2-3 years my team will be better and the current Leafs wont!
UrbanDaddy for GM!