More questions over Brian Burke’s firing by the Maple Leafs, the Canucks must address their second line center question, the latest on Evander Kane, Sam Gagner and much more.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: Jeff Blair believes lingering questions exist over the Toronto Maple Leafs firing their now-former GM Brian Burke.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not even Burke’s press conference on Saturday was enough to stop the media musings over the ‘real’ reasons behind his firing. The reason for that, of course, was the timing, coming so soon after the end of the NHL lockout and just before the start of the shortened season. Had Burke been given his walking papers last summer, or the end of this coming season (even if the Leafs made the playoffs), there wouldn’t be as much questioning over the reason behind it.
WINNIPEG SUN: Jets winger Evander Kane won’t let media criticism bother him this season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some in the Winnipeg media aren’t pleased with Kane’s attitude. As long as he continues to develop into a star player and helps the Jets make the playoffs, it won’t be an issue for Jets fans.
VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Tony Gallagher believes the Canucks need to resolve their second line center issue.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s an issue because Ryan Kesler, who usually fills that role, is still recovering from off -season surgeries. Perhaps the return from an eventual trade of Roberto Luongo might address it.
EDMONTON SUN: Oilers center Sam Gagner is looking forward to a big season.
OTTAWA SUN: Senators coach Paul MacLean is looking forward to the goalie battle between Craig Anderson, Robin Lehner and Ben Bishop.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Four members of the Hamilton Bulldogs (forwards Brendan Gallagher and Gabriel Dumont, defensemen Jarred Tinordi and Mike Commodore) have been invited to Canadiens training camp. Louis Leblanc, who was injured earlier this season, was not invited. Alex Galchenyuk, the Canadiens 2012 first round pick, has also been invited to camp.
CALGARY SUN: The Flames will open their season on January 20 against the San Jose Sharks.