NHL Canadian Corner – July 17, 2014

The Maple Leafs make Forbes list of most valuable franchises, plus updates on Brandon Prust, Peter Holland, Joe Colborne, Carl Klingberg  and more.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are once again the NHL's most valuable franchise.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are once again the NHL’s most valuable franchise.

TSN.CA: The Toronto Maple Leafs were the only NHL team to make Forbes list of the most valuable sports franchises. The Leafs also re-signed Peter Holland to a two-year, $1.55 million contract.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not bad for a club which hasn’t won a championship since 1967 and appeared in only one playoff series in ten years. On one hand, I admire the loyalty of Leafs fans. On the other, I question why they put so much devotion into a team which hasn’t done much to reward that loyalty over  the past decade.  As one of my readers wrote via Twitter, “The Leafs are like a car wash run by cheerleaders . It doesn’t even matter if the car gets clean, just put the sign up.” 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens forward Brandon Prust is gearing up for his his July 29 Prusty 4 Kids golf tournament at the Redtail Golf Course in Port Stanley, Ontario. It’s to benefit the Children’s Hospital at London Health Sciences Centre.

CALGARY HERALD: Flames forward Joe Colborne remains confident he’ll get a new deal worked out with the club before his August 1 arbitration hearing.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The majority of players who elect arbitration usually re-sign before their hearings. 

WINNIPEG FREE PRESS: The Jets re-signed forward Carl Klingberg to a one-year, two-way deal worth $650K at the NHL level.

EDMONTON SUN: The Oilers have hired Rocky Thompson as an assistant coach.


  1. Thats a pretty condensending (not to mention dumb) thing to say there Lyle, would you just stop being a Habs fan if they ran in to rough times? How many Sabres Flyers and Canucks fans wittnessed championships? We are all hockey fans first.
    Guess Cubs and Mets fans must be really dumb.

    • Nothing condescending or dumb about it. As I said, I admire the devotion of Leafs fans to their team, but the club really hasn’t done much to reward that loyalty over the past decade. I’d say the same thing about any club in similar circumstances. You’re the one assuming I’m calling you “dumb”. I didn’t. You’re being overly sensitive.

      • ” I question why they put so much devotion into a team which hasn’t done much to reward that loyalty over the past decade ”

        Being a Leaf Fan..this line really struck home Lyle! I find my self asking the same question this year..and until we actually continue to draft well and develop we will remain the laughing stock of the league. Constant Band Aid fixes to attempt to make playoffs just to generate a buzz. The signing of Shanahan, which while it might be a good move, currently looks like “hey here is something shiny…give me money”.

        I’m at a loss with this franchise that clearly has lost direction, doesn’t know if it wants to go left or right, up or down. Being considered one of the 50 most valuable sports franchises worries me…

        • I wonder how much of their revenue is derived from corporations and television contracts. Hey, I tip my hat to the Leafs, they earned their money. But if I were a Leafs fan, I’d be questioning the quality of the product they’ve been icing for the past decade. The Leafs teams of the early 90s and the Sundin-Cujo Leafs from 98 to 02 were competitive and exciting. Since 2006, however, it’s been a whole lotta “meh”.

          • A few days back it was reported that the Leafs were gung-ho to host a whole litany of league events in their anniversary season. Unfortunately, this is how the Leafs upper management has defined success since Conn Smythe gave up control of the team. It’s measured in $$ signs, not championships. As a long-suffering Leafs’ fan, I’m of the opinion that the only major NHL event the Leafs should be focused on hosting, is a Stanley Cup final!

          • Different eras though. The early 90’s Leafs were largely built on “home-run” deals. The Gilmour deal was outstanding, getting Andreychuk made sense because they could afford to deal Fuhr with Potvin in tow, and while dealing a captain like Clark was tough, he was fresh off a career season, and the return was a young centre that was (also) drafted 1st overall. The Cujo era Leafs were built a bit more through FA, and some of those pieces just aren’t as “easily” available today. The improvements in record from 91/92 to 92/93 (Andreychuk/Puppa trade, dynamic rookie Borschevsky, career year from Gilmour) and 97/98 to 98/99 (new coach, new top flight goalie) were great, but can they do it again?