Latest on the Maple Leafs and Predators.

A rumor of Rick Nash going to the Maple Leafs in a blockbuster move, Mikhail Grabovski shrugs off trade rumors, and the latest on Predators defenseman Ryan Suter.

"Nash to Toronto" rumor nixed by Leafs GM.

TSN’s Darren Dreger yesterday “tweeted” Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke has never discussed a trade with the Columbus Blue Jackets for Rick Nash “ever”. This came in response to a tweet by hockey analyst Bill Watters, which read “Here is one to smoke on.Please do not inhale .From CBJ,Nash & Huselius,From TORGrabovski, Schenn, Kadri and Komisarek.1st time Nash involved”.

NATIONAL POST: Sean Fitzgerald reported Leafs center Mikhail Grabovski shrugged off the recent trade rumors swirling about him. Grabovski’s an unrestricted free agent this summer, leading to speculation he could be shopped at the trade deadline, but he said he’d prefer to remain with the Leafs.

TORONTO SUN: Terry Koshan reports Grabovski and forward Clarke MacArthur have been “stalked” by trade rumors of late.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bear in mind, Watters also claimed back in December the Leafs may have had a deal in place with the Carolina Hurricanes for Eric Staal, which prompted a denial from Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford. I spoke with a Columbus hockey reporter yesterday, who told me as long as Scott Howson remained the GM of the Blue Jackets, Nash wouldn’t be going anywhere. It’s believed Howson won’t be fired at season’s end. Also, it seems far-fetched the Blue Jackets would move their franchise player when they’re hosting the ASG next year.

In conversing with several Leafs fans on this Nash rumor, I found it interesting most of them swatted aside my arguments against this move happening. They really believe Burke will land a superstar when he finally does pull the trigger on a trade. While I certainly don’t underestimate Burke’s management savvy, I sure hope those Leafs fans won’t be disappointed if he brings in someone of less than superstar quality.

PHILLY.COM: Frank Seravalli reports a source told him during the All-Star weekend the consensus around the league is it’s unlikely Nashville Predators defenseman Ryan Suter will be traded.

USA TODAY: Kevin Allen reports Suter’s contract talks isn’t just about money, as the reason he’s decided not to re-sign prior to the trade deadline is to see if Predators management are serious about making the team a Cup contender, now and in the near future. Allen suggested Carolina’s Tuomo Ruutu might be a good fit for the Predators.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s been reported Predators GM David Poile could be a “buyer” at the trade deadline, plus has been given permission by ownership to spend toward the cap ceiling next season. That’ll go a long way toward not only re-signing Suter and Shea Weber, but also bolstering their roster into Cup contention. It’s understandable why Suter wants to play “wait-and-see”. While he and Weber love playing in Nashville, they want assurances the team is going to be a Cup contender.


  1. Nash will not happen. It just does not make sense,.
    Carter ?(perhaps)…. Umberger (much more likely) Umberger is a Burke sort of guy who while expensive, could be haggled for.

  2. Brian Burke is one of the best GMs in the league. When he signed with Toronto, I was envious as a Habs fan. That said, it is impossible to live up to the expectations of Leafs fans. Like most fans, they want to be able to dump three or four spare parts and land Getzlaf or Perry. Those kind of players do not move in a trade without serious pain. It’s even getting harder in free agency. Perhaps someone like Jeff Carter could be available, but he will still cost the Leafs big time, and Burke doesn’t like the long contract. I admire his stand on that, because I do believe these ridiculous terms are hurting the league and killing some careers. Burke will make a deal, but it is inevitable that Leafs fans will be disappointed.

  3. Disappointed? Like they were disappointed when he landed Kessel, Phaneuf and Giggy, Lupul and Gardiner,Franson and Lombardi? All these players with exception to Kessel were brought in by trading spare parts and garbage!

  4. Clarke MacArthur is overrated.

  5. That Nash deal is a joke. Carter doesn’t seem possible because of the length of his contract. Burke has spoken pubically many times about these absurd long term contracts so if he took one on he would look like a hypocrite so I can’t see Carter coming. I think the Leafs will end up with a tough, griding, take the body kind of a center for that top line since they aren’t getting NAsh, Carter, Staal, or Getzlaf. Kessel and Lupul don’t nessessarily need more skill on that line they need a guy that will bring a real physical element that teams find tough to play against with some secondary skill.

  6. Columbus made a foolish mistake giving up a high #1 + another player for Carter.
    They just do not have enough around him to make it matter much. If Leafs want him,
    trade him but get back get back two #1’s ( this year and next) which will not be great ones
    ( 15th selection to 22nd selection as a guess) and prospects. Ask for Kadri or Colburne
    and see how bad Burke wants his “star” center, plus a lower tier prospect like Ross.
    Yep, asking for the moon but what the hell if Burke says no, your no worse off.
    ( To make the deal more agreeable, Columbus could take a $$$ contact back to help out).
    No way Columbus can buy FA’s in July and get buy their way out of this mess)

  7. If Burke does make a big trade it will be someone you don’t expect to move, Remember it is his policy not to talk about potential trades. The Media gets paid to start rumors, not Burke.

  8. @Casey I don’t think that leaf fans have put to high of expectations on burke in the past, yes maybe this year with wanting a top forward but I believe burke himself has come out and said we are after a big top forward. I don’t think any leaf fan can say they had burke being able to do what he has with the really any of the trades the last couple years.

  9. I hope the leafs don’t get Rick Nash he is not worth $7.8 mil/yr.

  10. Burke has pulled off some nice trades. He stole Phaneuf and Aulie out of Calgary. He ripped off Boston for Kaberle and if the Leafs had finished where TSN and the experts had them finishing Boston would have had the 12th overall pick instead of 2nd which would have been another win for Burke.
    This proposal is not that far fetched. I’m sure if the habs were rumored to be getting Nash or Getzlaf that would be completely possible on this website.

  11. Chris, you’d be dead wrong.

  12. Guess I missed the part where Beauchemin was garbage. Turns out, he’s more comfortable playing in Anaheim. As for Lupul, the reaction to his acquisition at the time was, shall we say, lukewarm. Sure, in hindsight, given his current play, it’s a great move. At the time, it was called a gamble, and folks were happier Burke got rid of Beauchemin’s salary, in the belief it would clear cap space for the superstar everyone was sure he was going to land.

  13. I agree with Chem. When Burke pulls the trigger, it could be for a player no one expects him to chase, let alone land. Just like Lupul last season around this time, and Phaneuf before that.

  14. Much like Canadiens fans, Maple Leaf fans totally overvalue their players. Grabovski (UFA), Kadri, MacArthur and Schenn aren’t going to net you a superstar player. These guys are 3rd line players on most teams. It doesn’t matter is you trade 6 of these guys, no team is going to give up their best player for them.

  15. Bill Watters has been sore with the Maple Leaf organization ever since his departure in 2003. He seems to create stories about trades that really don’t make a lot of sense but do create a certain amount of fan response.. While I believe Burke will do something, I’m highly doubtful its going to be of the blockbuster variety. In the case of this latest rumor, at least he was honest enough to say : Don’t inhale

  16. @ Vagina… yes, all of those players were brought in with spare parts and garbage, and exactly none of them are superstars. Phil Kessel is the closest, and Burke paid dearly for him. The jury is still out on who won that trade, and prior to the last few months, most leafs fans were disappointed with Kessel’s performance. Burke has assembled a pretty good team in fairly short order, but he is yet to bring in a bona fide superstar.

  17. I dont know one leafs fan who has said “we are going to get a top scorer or winger”.. also i dont even like that trade, I really like Grabovski and would be happier if they resigned him to an affordable contract then to throw him in on a deal for Nash

  18. @ Troy… bingo. Leafs and Habs fans both have a tendency to overrate our players. As a Habs fan, I would love for PG to be able to put together a package of Gill, AK, Weber and Campoli to bring in Getzlaf or whomever. But the truth is these guys are spare parts and garbage. They have each filled a role for our team, and some of them have had significant value. But they are not going to bring in a superstar. Give me a couple of picks and prospects for that bunch, and I will consider it a good day at the office. If I want a superstar, I will need to feel the pain of giving up guys like Patches, PK, Pleks and Price. It’s not that complicated.

    As for the Beauchemin situation… he has played well with Anaheim. But for the Leafs he was not gelling and his play was … well… garbage. Same with Cammy with the Habs. He gave us some great moments, and he has tremendous potential. But his play in the last couple of seasons was garbage. And he bought us Bourque… a decent player, but certainly not a superstar.

    My argument was not that these guys have no value, but when you are in the market for a superstar, the comparable value is spare parts and garbage.

  19. “I found it interesting most of them (Leaf fans) swatted aside my arguments against this move happening.”
    Lyle, don’t count me into this group I agree %100 that Nash won’t be a Leaf anytime soon. And it seems (atleast today) most Leaf fans agree that this is tabloid talk. Waters has NO sources. He’s clinging to any fading hope of publicity that carried over from the cancelled Leafs Lunch. He should not be taken any more seriously then Eklund.

    To all who say Grabovski, Mac, Kadri etc. are over rated, of course they are. All players in big markets are because of exposure, that doesn’t mean they’re bad players. Unless I have a team full of superstar centers (pit, van to name a few) I would put Grabovski on my second line any day.

    For the record I also agree with Chem. Burke will pull a move none of us expect. The player won’t be regarded as established elite, but will have enough upside where being a top 3 guy in the future isn’t out of the question.
    And to be fair to the other half of the article, I think the Preds will be buyers too. In an effort to impress Suter and Weber, I can see them trying to land a guy like Semin. I see him being expendible on Washinton, and has the offence the Preds lack. I say it’s a perfect fit. Blum or Ellis, a pick and a small salary dump should get ‘er done.

  20. Troy/puckhead much like fans that don’t know what they are talking about, you should explain yourself how on earth are these guys just 3rd line players especially when Schenn is a 22yr/old defenseman and why MacA is overrated. Why not add to the conversation than just spew a dumb trolling remark like you both have?

    Chem is 100% right. The Toronto MSM are paid to create these rumours that are really dumb if you take the time and read what they say and what Burke has said which more often than not contradict this rumors, not reports. It’s funny how there is a need to improve on the forwards – big winger/center when they have Army coming back who plays exactly that style… maybe if Burke was trying to land someone it might be to replace Army with a similar type player that is less injury prone vs. someone like Nash or Carter whom both don’t fit on this team. They goals should be improving the defense and getting a bonafide shut down guy and not rely on a 22yr/old to do that.

  21. There’s no way CBJ trades there best player in franchise history + a guy who actually wants to stay with a losing franchise. I’m pretty sure anyone can be had off of CBJ’s roster except Nash and Brassard.

  22. As a Leaf fan i liked Beauchemin he was one of the only dmen who sacrificed the body and played well in the defensive zone while on the leafs. So far the leafs have won the trade as lupul is having a stellar year and Gardiner looks smooth and very smart with the puck as a rookie. but don’t discredit Beachemin, hes a solid top 4 defensive guy for any team and works his arse off every game.

    as far as the Nash rumor…hes not a unless they plan on keeping Bozie on the first line(sad) and moving lombardi to the second line or calling up Colborne…this deal makes no sense. no matter how nice it would be to have nash on the team.

    while CBJ would benifit from 2 previsous 1st rounders. Kadri is no Nash and completely unproven. Schenn needs a good Mentor to up his game a Komi is terrible….yet playing ok this year. this makes no sense.

  23. All fans overrate their favorite teams players. Its not just a leafs habs thing. They are not spare parts and garbage getting moved either. Each player in a trade is brought in with a specific purpose. Sometimes it works out other times it does not.

  24. Bill Watters is worse then Eklund.. seriously…..

    Either way.. I’m wondering what sort of heat Burke is feeling from possibly missing the playoffs again this year. Seems to me he’s plotted a pretty good course the last couple years, but to overpay for that top line center (which he would) right now seems more of a job saving move rather then looking out for the long term of the team.

  25. Just to clarify about me saying Burke would overpay for a top line bid center, anybody getting one would have to overpay. There’s just not a lot out on the market with decent contracts, and consistent production.. if there are any at all for that matter.

  26. I agree that Habs and Leafs fans overrate their players, however they tend to “underrate” them too. Or, to put it another way, criticize them for not playing past expectations. Players like Moen and Gill, for example, excel when given a certain role. Problem is, mainly because of injury, they are placed in bigger roles and more is expected of them. Gill is a shut down defenseman, when more is expected of him, his weaknesses show. Moen is not a 1st/2nd line player, he’s not a playmaker or a goalscorer. He’s a checking/shut down guy. As a result, some fans refer to players like Gill or Moen as “spare parts” or “garbage”. No amount of coaching will turn any player into more than what they are. A great coach will bring the best out of players, solve problems “in the room”, make the right decisions at the right time, etc., etc., but he can’t create talent. Sure, occassionaly a player will shine when he is moved into a certain role above his normal role, but it usually doesn’t last long. Unfortunately, the majority of the time, a team just has to go with the players it has. This is where drafting, development and shrewd trading come into play (but that’s another story for another day!). There are never any simple fixes, the Pens can’t replace Crosby, they fortunate to have players like Malkin, Staal, Fleury, etc. though.

  27. Remember as much as Lupul has been great. He is on his 4th team and was a throw in to make the salary cap work for the ducks. Not a Burke steal more of a dumb luck. Also Gardiner who has potential was his second choice for defence prospect. He wanted the prospect the ducks have currently in the NCAA.

  28. Spector, you need an edit button! lol I meant to say criticize players for not playing past unrealistic expectations. But I guess that’s what is meant by “overrating” players too! I think its a case of overrating and overvaluing the players…

  29. I’ve got to agree with the more sensible comments here and believe there’s no way we’re prying Nash out of Columbus unless we sell the farm, I would suggest something like Colborne, Gardiner, prospect and or a pick. Lets face it Columbus sucks, Howson is not an idiot and knows a huige rebuild is in the works, he doesn’t want Komi or possibly even Garbo he would want fresh young talent.

    For the record I agree with DurtMCHurt Garbo is a second line C on most teams save for the high rollers!

    What ever happened to the Malone to TO rumours? LOL

  30. Whatever one thinks of the Leafs players and prospects involved in Water’s rumour, it is too high a price for the Maple Leafs to pay.

    Think about it; Burke has essentially one shot at acquiring a franchise-type player fans are pining for and he very likely knows it.

    Schenn and Kadri or Colborne (can’t see Burke trading both of his top forward prospects) are really the only assets which, in conjunction with useful but perhaps not overly valuable roster players and what will likely be mediocre draft picks, could bring the kind of player sought.

    So, the Leafs have one bullet.

    Would fans really want that bullet to be used on what will be a 28 year-old winger with a short-term upside of perhaps 40 goals and a few assists?

    And think about the long-term consequences; Once players hit their 30s, reflexes, muscle maitenence and energy storage decline quite rapidly. Just by my own observation, this is even more noticeable in players who use their physical abilities more than some others might.

    Though there may be other factors involved, Joe Thornton seems a good example of this. At 32, his scoring production has declined significantly. Moreover, he seems to be becoming a different player.

    For example, his hit statistics have changed dramatically. In the 2009/10 season, Thornton had 113 hits in 79 games. In the first 47 games of this season, he has 17.

    Obviously he wasn’t a huge hitter even a couple of years ago but he projects to have 28.5 hits over 79 games this year. That’s a 75 per cent decline.

    I like Nash as a player as much as anyone (I’ve had him in my keeper fantasy league for five years now) but his age combined with the kind of player he is along with his monsterously out of proportion cap hit makes this deal a no-brainer pass for the Leafs.

  31. Everyone talks about “The Great Burke”, while not saying he is a bad GM, no one talks about the bad moves. The Kessel trade looks great today but didn’t always, Komisarek to 5mil+? Giguere, Beauchemain (as Spector says) et al… Burke spent his first two years cleaning up bad mistakes that he made. The “pugnacious” D of year 1 was almost all traded or replaced in the depth chart with others. While I admire him and the leafs success, before we call him “one of the best” he needs to have more then one good season with the white and blue. Yes in the past he has had success, but was not wholey responsible for that success. The Sedin’s were a great draft a decade after he did it and with a hell of a lot of other moves. Again not sayin he isn’t a great GM but let not one half year of success dictate opinion. After all Gauthier is being judged mainly on decisions that were made by Gainey.

  32. Why is Nash to Toronto such a bad thing? I’m not convinced that deal doesn’t make sense. Nash has (Capgeek) 7 years left at a cap hit of $7.8M. Why is that better than Carter’s 10 years at $5.2M? In addition, Carter’s real money goes down dramatically in a few years while Nash’s goes up.

    Anyway, Nash is 27. If we assume that Columbus can turn things around quickly, we’d be talking about 3 years. Nash will be 30. This is a young man’s league now. Nash will be an old man at 30. It makes more sense for Nash to go to a team on the cusp of being a contender, and that is Toronto. In addition, they’d be sending Nash to the other conference which is always desirable.

  33. I didn’t even think about it until I was reading some earlier comments. In the Carter trade, did Columbus trade their first round pick in the 2011 draft or the 2012 draft? If it’s the 2012 draft…. OUCH!

  34. To add, the lupul deal was fantastic, don’t want to be pure hating. As a Hab fan I envy the leafs success and appreciate the time it can take to build a winner, but again: half a season is not success. If the leafs are in the same spot next year then Burke is a certified genius considering what he walked into

  35. JDBGiGC…It was the 2011 draft and ended up being Sean Couturier

  36. Rick nash is overrated.
    Jeff Carter is furhtermore overrated.
    Burke is not getting either guy; Nash b/c he isnt available, carter b/c the cost is going to be too high (think Voracek + high pick) to get him.
    Agree that if burke gets a stud it will be more under the radar.

    Bill Waters is more “in the know” than he gets credit for. GMs are going to deny every trade rumour… “no we are not trading phaneuf,” “no we are not trading Hossa/Kovalchuck,” “no we are not trading -fill in the blank-“.

    Burke’s biggest problem is that in the past he has made deals to unload contracts and players he did not want. Sure, you look like a rose if you trade Toskala, Blake, Stajan, Myers… the list goes on. Lets see what he can do now when it is more about who you bring in than who you ship out. The last deal, and most scrutinized, he made to purely “acquire” a player involved mortgaging his future for Kessel and that looks to have been worst case scenrio in terms of what you gave up.

    I don’t think any franchise players are available this season. So maybe Burke does nothing… ?

  37. @A. Donnybrook

    MacArthur had one season in his career where he reached the 20 goal plateau. His career high is 62 points….and one would argue he overacheived (that was last year)…..oh and that same year he was a minus -3….figure that out. Put him on a cup contending team…..note “cup contending”….he’d be a third line player. I read what people from the “Leafs Nation” have to say and they figure they’d get a kings ransom for him…however there’s a difference between fantasy land and reality. No need to pump his tires, the numbers don’t lie.

  38. Nash to Toronto solves nothing , they already have good chemistry with Lupul / Kessel , will they break them up or will Nash be a 2nd line winger?

    The Leafs need a #1, no doubt about it center or a rock star # 1 goalie , nothing else required except maybe some minor tinkering

  39. the one team who has big depth down the middle ( in fact 2 natural centers are playing the wing ) is San Jose . Joe T , Couture, Marleau and Pavelski

    No going to speculate who goes either way but with Havlat hurt & Clowe’s numbers down they need some production on the wing in SJ

  40. Burke may want a superstar… but the team that has that player… has to want to trade him…

  41. I wouldn’t be surprised if Burkie gets Nash and considering he does have the ammo to pull this deal off.

  42. Umberger? seriously? come on that is not an upgrade on any line. for starters he is 30 and older than the core players currently on the leaf roster yes hes big (whupdedooo) but in no way worth the money he gets (4.6m for the next 4 years) get a star or dont change a dam thing

  43. Lets face it, Burke wants to land a big time center. As for Grabbo, hes a solid number two center who could get upwards of 5mil per on the UFA market. That being said, I wouldnt want to pay him more then 3.8per and Burke isnt likely to sign him given Colbourne, Connolly, Kadri, Bozak, Lombardi, etc could all be possible 2nd line centers. Given that Grabbo, Kuli and McArthur havent had the success of last year, the only way I see them re-signing Grabbo is if he takes a big “home town” discount, and I doubt he’ll do that.

  44. would like to see Burke cut a deal with the Rangers. new york is a serious cup contender but need some more scoring and maybe another d man for depth. really like Anisimov and he could be a player who could be a #1 center in a year or so . grabovski playing with gaborik would be real nice to see .
    maybe grabo and franson and brown for anisimov and bickel and prospect (dylan mcilrath)
    ranger lines
    dubinsky richards callahan
    gaborik grabovski hagelin
    wojtek stepan rupp
    prust boyle brown
    solid defence and the king in goal = big time cup threat
    leafs would get a young big center , big tough dman 5or 6 guy and a good prospect in a couple years
    as well as some cap space . it will take close to 4 mill a season to get grabo locked up and i would like to see the leafs continue to get younger as they are still two years away from being a contender

  45. Now way no how TO gets Nash, Unless you grossly overpay like you did for kessel. Sorry Burke lovers but if you took off your rose colored glasses you’d see Burke is an ok gm, not the most amazing gm ever. He talks a lot, and thinks the world of himself like well the toronto fans do. Stick to building a Winner in a couple years and not going for big splashes and winning now. Maybe you squeak into the playoffs this year (if you’re lucky) and then what? Lose to Boston/NY or whoever is first in the east in what 4-5 games. Sweet.

  46. I don’t get all this hate on for Burke…..He hasn’t once come out and said he was going to make a Nash trade, or a Getlaf trade, or a Corey Perry trade…That has come from the Toronto media and media outlets outside of Toronto. He hasn’t been brash when he completely took Nashville to the cleaners on the Lombardi/Franson trade, nor the Calgary trade, and even the Kessel trade has looked great for both teams.

    If you want to blame anyone for these stupid rumors blame Damian Cox, Steve Simmons, Howard Berger, and chumps like that who squack from their desks and but have never even smelt inside a GM’s office in Toronto or in any city. Let’s let the trade deadline pass before grading a GM well in advance…..I like what he has done with this team, still more tinkering to do…But things are a lot better than they were before he arrived…Things like Organizational depth, prospects, speed, youth; Have never been attached to this team before Burke.

  47. Its leafs fan like that, that give us a bad name.
    Yes Burke robbed Calgary of Dion Phaneuf… But that Lupul and gardiner trade wasnt an allstar trade. NOBODY even Joffery expected him to preform at this level.

    sure Burke will likely give a trade to try and bolster his team, but odds are it wont be for a nash, Staal or Getzlaf

  48. Does Nash really have a superstar label attached to him? If so, why? Either that rating has been watered down to a pathetic level or people are overlooking what he’s done since joining the NHL and focusing strictly on long gone draft hype.

  49. While the phaneuf trade was a little one sided, I don’t think anyone outside of Toronto considers him one of the best, or even top 30 dmen in the league

  50. It would be quite interesting to see Nash stats, play and comments after being dealt to a “real” franchise where he had to compete for ice time, line mates and media questioning his play night in and out.

    I am all for throwing Schenn and Grabovski their way for Nash. Schenn is at his peak value and play at this age considering his style of play is done evolving. Grabovski is like Bozak enjoying fame on a team struggling for years and as well peaking in value.

  51. the trade that bill watters suggested would be one of the worst ever. nash has no passion. if he did he wouldnt resign in columbus to begin with. but they were the only team who would over pay him at the time he signed., he is not worth his pay. p.s. at mats saying schenn is at his peak, dont ever post again please.

  52. Here’s my prediction – Ron Wilson will have the Leafs playing just well enough to miss the final playoff spot in a shootout in Montreal in the 82nd game of the season, and Burke will tweet Wilson’s departure the very next day.
    Dallas Eakins will be hired as Head Coach and the Leafs will secure a first-line centre in the summer. All of the lifelong Leaf fans will get excited AGAIN! and the carousel will go round and round.

  53. Here are some moves i heard the kings are making soon
    To Buffalo
    J. Stoll
    1st round pick
    D. Stanford
    B. Boyes
    and than
    To Toronto
    D. Penner
    C. MaccArthur

  54. moegillknee, I like that trade. I would counter with Crabb over Brown, and I would want Boyle instead of Anisimov though.
    Icebear, I would consider Phaneuf in my top 30. Not top 10 or 20….but 30 is reasonable.

  55. Are Habs fans on here actually complaining that Leaf fans overvalue their players? Do I need to go back and find some of the comments from the Fall about how they were going to the Eastern Conference final? Both teams are not very good, and this is coming from a Leaf fan. Montreal is going to nosedive over the next few years with so much money committed to players that in all honesty and aging and not very productive; Burke is realizing that you can’t build a team from scratch through FA signings and bold trades anymore. It is going to take a lot of time, some luck in the draft, and savvy trading moving prospects and younger players for more established players to right the ship for both teams. Burke is now entering phase two of the rebuild and needs to add some more elite offensive skill with size and improve the defensive play of the team. I don’t know how he accomplishes number 1 but number 2 is improved by getting rid of Ron Wilson and shipping out some of the useless pylons on D like Luke Schenn and Komisarek who aren’t built like NHL defensemen in 2012. In my opinion, they should be going after Ryan Suter in FA, not another signing like Tim Connolly that won’t really do anything to help the offense. If they replaced Schenn and Komisarek with Suter and then traded those guys for pieces they would be a much much better team than simply adding some expensive, aging forward.

  56. @ durt you are a Toronto fan however right? :) fair enough he depending on the year could crack a top 30. I think he still has potential to be a top guy if he stepped back looked at his game and well lost his massive massive ego

  57. Don’t lump us Leaf fans together – most Leaf fans know that Kadri and Colborne are PROSPECTS – which is to say that they COULD be top 6 NHLers – it’s not a gaurantee. I’m a huge Leaf fan but most of the dummies who say that Burkie should just go out and get a #1 center don’t know what they are talking about – you don’t think if Burkie could get a bonafide #1 center he wouldn’t? Why would any other GM move a #1 line center? Use your heads… Again – don’t lump us Leaf fans together with the meatheads and also I might add – i’ve see ridiculous trades proposed on here by fans of ALL NHL teams – not just Leaf and (dare I side with the enemy) Habs fans… Burke does make deals from out of know where and they’re never for a guy who’s lighting up the scoreboard at the time – especially at the trade deadline when prices for guys are ridiculously high. I see Burke being like last year – a slight seller to get draft picks (like Versteegh and Kaberle) and stay the course with the rebuild. All you have to do is make the playoffs and you have a chance – we may get blown out in the 1st round but i’d rather that then sacrifice the future just to get blown out in the 2nd round instead… They hired Burke because he would never make a deal because us fans wanted him to – he doesn’t care about that pressure – he was hired to restock the shelves and build a preannial contender and I think that’s what he has started to do…

  58. oh and another thing – Watters gets his info FROM Eklund…lol.

    I still say Staal’s UFA year is coming up – if he doesn’t sign an extension this summer he will be the Ryan Suter of next year’s trade deadline – does Pittsburgh have the cap room to keep him along with Crosby, Malkink Neal, Letang, Fleury etc. etc…. I guess it depends on him if he wants to take a home town discount or does he wanna finally be a star? Burke is making a play for him like Fletcher did for Gilmour 20 years ago…lol

    Lyle – c’mon man – it makes sense – with the cap supposedly shrinking how does Pittsburgh keep Staal? A scenario like this (and the draft) is the only way Toronto gets our coveted #1 center…

  59. Ok, alot of the trades being talked about on here are wishful thinking!! As a Leaf fan i would love to see Nash come to Toronto! But is it going to happen probably not, and as for Carter, ya i think he would be a good addition to the Leafs, if he can stay healthy.but with that contract i dont see it happening,
    Now players i could see them moving are. Grabovski, Kulemin, MacArthur, Komisarek (if they can find someone to take him!!), Schenn. if Burke could pick up a top six forward by moving any of these guys i would be happy! if they could land a Derek Roy from Buffalo or what about someone like Brenden Morrow he could help for a playoff run, and if you could scoop up P.K. Subban from Montreal, i know he has a little bit of a attitude, but he is going to be an Elite defencemen in the future!!

  60. I wouldn’t do anything if I was BB. Grabo is good for the team….he plays every shift!! They have other players they can get rid of. As for big bodies, Mckegg and Colborne have a solid chance of making the big club next year according to scouting. Mckegg is again one of the top players in his league! BB is doing a much better job at rearing his young players tha previous leafs management! Detroit does the exact thing, dont see too many rookies on their team!

    Altough Schenn is 22, I feel he is the most expendible with the rising of Aulie and Gardiner. Schenn, a 2-3 line forward, and a first rounder is fair trade for most top centers! Schenn is a former #1 who will be a pronger style player soon! I think sometimes some of you guys also under value a players worth, especially with the way the game is played today.

  61. Schenn is not a #1. He was picked in the first round at I think it was 5th spot.

    You have to look at all the angles when thinking about trades. Most teams that have #1 centers, or centers that should be #1 but are stuck behind a real good #1 center are not likely to be available. If they are its because the player is a problem to the club, or the team is going to rebuild and are looking to unload him. You also have to consider that if you offered Schenn, a 2nd/3rd line player, and a first round pick that the team receiving that would have a need for all three of those things. Anyone will take a first sure, it’d have to be the right 2nd line player, and they would really have to like and need Schenn.

    With the exception of the Kessel deal, Burke has always bought when prices are low in his trades as leafs GM. The two biggest were Phanuef and Gardiner/lupul. Phanuef was not happy in Calgary, he was trying to be a leader in a lockerroom with too many older leaders and was causing a rift in the locker room so he had to be removed. Lupul was expensive and coming off a long break of not playing and really was not fully healed. Gardiner was seen as a solid but not spectacular prospect in most peoples eyes. If you look at these types of deals Burke makes they are always give and take with baggage going both ways and sometimes they will work out for both teams, other times not so much. This is why Burke has looked good. He takes calculated risks. That is the only type of deal I expect from Burke this year also. If he can work another deal like that he will, if not he will tinker a little maybe move an mid to early round pick for a push, or go the opposite way and get a couple picks.

  62. The only trade where Burke really gave up something that mattered was the kessel trade all others after that he has gotten good players at a really cheap price and the Komi contract was a Burke one I seen it posted up there somewhere, Mr.Burke is just cleaning the mess that was left for him from the GM of the past where the team still wasn’t going anywhere. There wil be a brighter day soon for us lead fans I think Burke is on the right track.

  63. why not do a Komisare for Umberger…..a wash of salaries….columbus gets a much needed D man and the leafs get a pretty decent center that can kill penalties…..thoughts?

  64. leafs went no wear last year going no wear this year and with the same team
    going no wear next year burk is not that stupid he do realize hes got to make a big move
    if your a big leaf fan like me it’s nerve recking i be ok can’t wait for 27th


  1. Bringing Back LeafLinks - Editor In Leaf - A Toronto Maple Leafs Blog - [...] of trades, Lyle Richardson from Spector’s Hockey refutes a few juicy trade rumors that popped up on Twitter this …