NHL Canadian Corner – July 23, 2014

Reaction to the Maple Leafs new assistant GM, new Oilers are introduced to the Edmonton media, plus updates on P.A. Parenteau, Joe Colborne and more. 

New Leafs assistant GM Kyle Dubas meets the Toronto media.

New Leafs assistant GM Kyle Dubas meets the Toronto media.

NATIONAL POST/TORONTO  STAR/TORONTO SUN:  Reaction from Toronto pundits regarding the Maple Leafs hiring 28-year-old former Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds GM and analytics guru Kyle Dubas as their new assistant GM. The club also fired assistant GMs Claude Loiselle and Dave Poulin. All agree the move represents a significant shift in the Leafs front-office thinking.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The move can also be seen as grooming a potential replacement for GM Dave Nonis if the Leafs fail to make the playoffs in 2015. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Benoit Pouliot, Teddy Purcell and Mark Fayne were formally introduced yesterday to the Edmonton media.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The trio said the usual cliches about how pleased they are to be joining the Oilers and playing in an intense hockey market like Edmonton. They are significant additions to the rebuilding Oilers, but it remains to be seen if their presence gets the club any closer to playoff contention in 2015.

TSN.CA: P.A. Parenteau recently said joining the Montreal Canadiens was a dream come true.

CALGARY SUN: Joe Colborne is pleased to have a new two-year contract with the Flames.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: French broadcasts of Senators games returns to Unique FM for three more years.


  1. Its kinda getting lost in the hub bub of Dubas being hired that the firing of Loiselleand Poulin is probably just as big, if not bigger than the hiring of the young and upcoming executive. Loiselle is the guy responsible for most of the contracts everyone likes to rip on, and some of the things Poulin has said over the past couple of years really show the “old boys club” way of thinking that have haunted the Leafs for the past decade, and left them behind the curve in the new NHL.

    Still find it kind of an odd move to chop every assistant in the organization and leave Randy and Dave, but willing to give Shanny the benifit of the doubt. I was dreading this offseason the way it started but slowly it shaped up in to a great one. No highpriced over paid third liners, added afordable depth, hired 2 good assitant coaches with some experience and success with issues that have impacted the Leafs in the past, firing the old boys club, replacing them with a hockey guy first but one that is far from blind in using all the info available to himself to make the team better. As an avid fan of the OHL Ive said on this site before that the Soo was one of the best run organizations in the League, it wasnt all about fancy stats they have guys with size that played hard were well coached etc. These could all good steps going forward, I dont think it makes the Leafs any more of a contender next year or dramatically improves them short term, but at least they are on the right track and I can watch next year without the feeling of impending doom, that has followed this team for some time now.

    *slow claps* Bravo Mr. Shanahan, you given a hopless team something it hasn’t had in a long time.

    • I tend to agree with you – I like the moves for the most part. I don’t agree with Lyle that he could/should be ushered into the GM role in a years time if Nonis gets canned – seems a bit young and inexperienced at this level to be assuming the GM job of the most heavily scritinized hockey team in the world, but I like what he brings to the table in an analytics/assistant role.

    • To go along with your praise of the Soo team, I had the pleasure of watching Sheldon Keefe Lead a Pembroke team to 5 straight championship in the CJHL and one RBC Cup before moving to the Greyhounds. He just seems to know how to get the most of his players. I would love to see him also get a chance maybe as a AHL Coach in couple years. I would love the leafs to grab him but either way he deserve a shot at some point, if hes looking for it.

    • kinda funny that the leafs are rebuilding there front office instead of their team this franchise is in such disarray I feel sorry for shanny having to try and pull this franchise from the bottom third of this league!!

      • Another dumb comment, what good is rebuilding a team with a joke of a front office that has proved to be rather incompetent? Makes more sense to get a good staff in place then build with the guys you trust right?

        • you definetly are a leafs fan if you think that way dumb dumb dumb

  2. No surprises here. Shannahan seems to have this under control so far. Every move including leaving the head figures, Carlye and Nonis but remove their supports was clever. No one builds projects in the open and/or tells anyone what they are doing and by leaving both Carlye and Nonis behind he has his front men. I don’t know how much faith Shannanhan has in Nonis but Nonis isn’t an old world thinker either. I think having both Randy and Dave still in the fold tells players that it wasn’t just poor management and that the players are also to blame removing the ‘drivers’ would of shifted the blame squarely and solely on the coaches and GMs.
    I think it’s also dumb to say that now Nonis has both Shannahan and Dubas that he has to show the ropes to because I think it’s safe to say that in every real job, the chances of a subordinate having to show the new hire the ropes until they get their footing is fairlyland material. If you were in an upper management position you wouldn’t be showing your boss how he should be doing his job right? Why do sports writers and fans think that happens in this industry, because it’s a game so it’s like a club? I don’t get it.
    Good move all way round on the Leafs with this move. Looks like they are cleaning house and let’s hope more changes continue to happen for the good.

  3. I believe this is a good move by the Leafs because anyone that follows the Leafs closely like I do know that one of the main reasons that the team has done so poorly for so long is because management has always been behind the times and slow to follow trends and ideas that the more successful teams have embraced. Their ideas, plans, ways of doing business, and general attitude toward the game, their players, and their fans have for the most part been proven to be wrong and now that fact may finally be sinking in for the current management group. Loiselle and Poulin are good people but they were no longer needed because their methods were judged to be old-school. Brendan Shanahan may have been convinced to hire Kyle Gudas because after talking to him he found that Gudas had many ideas and strategies that were opposite of his own and what the Leafs were used to in the past. Now be honest: don’t you believe that this is exactly what the Leafs need and what they’ve needed for the longest time, a man in charge whose ideas and plans are the opposite of how the team has been run for the last 4 plus decades? If you look at it that way, then I see it as a plus and easily the Leafs best move of the summer!