Burke open for business

Leafs GM will be busy man on trade front

By LANCE HORNBY, Toronto Sun

Brian Burke advises all fellow general managers who truly believe they’re on the verge of a Stanley Cup to go for that last key trade and to hang with the cost.

And if you’re going to deal, don’t forget that phone number, 1-800-GO-BURKE, or stop on by at 40 Bay St.

The Maple Leafs’ boss was talking up a storm Saturday, declaring the Leafs were not out of the playoff race, but were ready for any trade scenario, either before the NHL Olympic roster freeze in three weeks or the frenzied follow up to the March 3 league deadline. The Leafs have just concluded two days of pro scouting meetings in Ft. Lauderdale and Burke hung out the ‘Open For Business’ sign right after.

“We rate all the teams, rate all the players and are ready to move if a team steps up,” Burke said. “If I could make a deal today that could propel us into the playoffs, I’d make it. Obviously, with each loss the chances are more remote, but that’s still our goal.

“People can laugh all they want when they see this interview, but that was our goal at the start of the season and it’s still our priority.

“We are preparing to be a buyer or a seller. We’re dealing with that internal dynamic too, who is going to sign and if they want to sign and stay here at a reasonable price. We’ve evaluated our internal assets, now we’re evaluating the assets of teams that are likely to step up and offer us someone. A trade is one phone call, but the work that goes into it takes typically weeks or months. But we’re ready after these meetings.”

By “internal assets”, Burke meant the nine unrestricted free agents the Leafs have looming in July, five restricted as well as any commodities under contract for 2010-11. Everyone wants defenceman Tomas Kaberle of course and his $4.25 million US cap-friendly salary, and though he’s sticking to his no-trade clause which Burke says he’ll honour, going to a city he likes with a chance to win a Cup might yet entice him at the last second. Kaberle would surely fetch the first rounder the Leafs lost in the Phil Kessel deal.

Burke said Anaheim’s pursuit of Chris Pronger and Francois Beauchemin when he ran the Ducks a few years was not universally acclaimed, until they won the 2007 Cup.

“Beauchemin was a player I didn’t want, but the scouting staff did, so we asked for him in the (Sergei Federov) deal,” Burke said. “Bob Murray, my assistant GM, said this was the guy we had to have. I have a lot different opinion of him now, bringing him here, but at the time I went back to my notes and he’d never done anything. But you rely on your staff.


199 Responses to Burke open for business

  1. leafy says:

    Well in case you're too stupid to realize it (which should not be ruled out by the way), I'm don't spend much time on this site anymore. Only every now and then during spare time.  In between those times, what I do with my time is none of your goddamn business. Capish?

  2. lafleur10 says:

    you know what leafy sometimes the truth just plains hurts! you are telling it like it is and they don't like it because it's the truth! you were and are the only leafs fan on here that doesn't like the kessel trade ,and they don't like that they want you to be a mindless sheep and pretend that everything is good in leaf land,when truth is burke got raped in that deal and it will set the leafs back even further you saw and see it it's too bad they can't leafy as a habs fan and a non leaf i agree with you on a strictly hockey deal the leafs got raped and this deal will  a terrible one for the leafs especially if hall turns out to be a thornton or a tavares!kessel is a good player not a great player and the only guys worth 2 top lottery picks and a second are malkin,crosby,ovechin and kessel isn't and never will be those guys he couldn't even tape those guys sticks,now if it was 1 first pick it would've been a better deal,but when your rebuilding and in lottery pick territory you don't trade those picks period! you know that leafy and that's what your trying to tell these guys!

  3. reinjosh says:

    i wasn;t using philosophy (your shooing away what im saying because you dont agree)
    And yes, leafs fans were saying this team would be good
    and ill even admit that i saw this team trying to claw into the playoffs (so far i have been wrong)
    and im not dismissing what your saying
    im just saying that its to early to bring judgment on the deal yet
    something your not listening to.
    and ive only used fear mongering and stupid with this deal because everyone is drawing a bead on the deal FAR to early

  4. leafy says:

    Lafleur you are bang on 100%. If you remember, there was a time about 3 or 4 years ago when there were probably 100 Leaf fans on this site on a routine basis, many of which were objective and weren't afraid to criticize management.  Many of those fans are now gone.

    To be fair, however, there are still many smart Leaf fans on HTR. In fact, if you read this thread and past Leaf articles, it is only a SMALL NUMBER who take offense when you criticize Leaf management.  It is apparent that most Leaf fans would agree with exactly what you've stated above.

  5. reinjosh says:

    hmm, why are you responding to this?
    right, because you need the attention
    when have I or mojo or cam or the_word expressed burke as the messiah? right never
    he can voice his displeasure. he has. over and over and over again. yeah we know.
    what ive said, the entire time, and since day one (i was a annoyed that the deal happened) is that judgment on the deal cannot be made because the draft picks are not anything yet.
    the draft picks also could turn into bad players. there is a lot of variables in the trade and those variables contribute to the final outcome of the trade being a complete unknown.

    ive looked at the deal like this from day one. And ill say it again since you don't seem to get something unless they are said over and over again. From day one I was apprehensive about this trade. Yes the leafs got a good player (and when he was killing it, i was elated but that never changed the fact i was still apprehensive), but they had to give up a good price. For the type of player that he is and seems capable of being, the price is a fair price. But, because the leafs are not the greatest team, I was always fearful of finishing last and potentially (because the player they get may not be as good as kessel, it is a possibility) giving up a lot. Now barring that, I would be fine giving up a 6th overall pick and a 15th overall pick and having both players (or three depending on the 2nd rounder) turn out to be good but lesser players when compared to kessel. Thats what you have to give up to get a player with the kind of potential that kessel has. But we wont know until the picks get placed and used to pick players and those players develop. Its pointless to say "i knew that the deal was terrible and going to kill this team" because it hasn't happened yet. Now you can say that, i don't care. If your short sighted enough to not realize that it hasn't happened yet, whatever. but dont say it repeatedly. understand (you probably dont, i tried).

    and i never said draft picks were useless. if you could read at a level above a 12 year old, you might understand that.

    and your line about not being able to take criticism is funny. most leafs fans take a lot of criticism. but you, you can never take any criticism aimed at your team. you talk the talk but cant walk the walk. tool. ill educated fool.

  6. reinjosh says:

    so you are a fan of the patriots? or not?
    cause they have certainly lost a step since that epic and historic loss in one of the biggest upsets in sports history
    just saying 😉

  7. lafleur10 says:

    leafy you are bang on too!i remember 3-4 years ago  when many were objective now it's different whether your a leafs fan or not if you critize leafs management some not all but some will go on a huge tizzy! but yes leafy there are some smart leafs fan on here(and your 1 of them) but there are some that are just plain awful

     just so you know too leafy you and i are about the same age and have seen things in this game(like patrick roy's whole career) etc, that some of these younger fans will never see,and i respect you and always enjoy reading your posts!your 1 of the more senisble and funner leafs fans,and sometimes i think,we think alike!

  8. leafy says:

    Haha! It's totally insane. As you know, back in September, I had several heated exchanges with Leaf fans on the Kessel trade. 

    Now fast forward 4 months, I remind them of exchange in how I called it right (ie, the Leafs will end up in a lottery pick position; Burke will be handcuffed; his focus may shift from rebuilding to win now, etc).

    The reaction: A total uproar and outrage from a select few Leaf fans.

    So in other words, whatever we debate today, we are not allowed to raise the debate again in the future. It should all be forgotten. Absolutely ridiculous!

  9. reinjosh says:

    whose taking offense to criticizing leaf management?
    not me!
    if you could read my comments properly

  10. tacitus says:

    he sure isnt better than horton…. kessel has a better shot… everything else about hortons game is better… he can play wing and center… hes tougher…pretty sure hes bigger…plus he has more balls…..

    also he never wanted out of florida to make more money or be on a better team… so his character is also far superior

  11. reinjosh says:

    see all your doing is reminding everyone of potentialities
    thats why everyone is saying something back to you
    none of what you have said has actually happened yet
    (the leafs are 3rd overall but havent ended up giving the bruins a lottery pick because the season isn't over, and saying "if the season ended today" doesnt work because it doenst end today, it ends in about 30 games, draw judgment then)
    so your overreacting and putting things in our mouth

    and prove what signifies burke has been handcuffed and how his focus has shifter to win now?
    because i cant see anything that says it has. nothing. at all

  12. leafy says:

    That's it exactly Lafleur…experience. We're older and wiser. We have seen both the Leafs and Habs rebuild and rebuild and rebuild several times when most of these younger guys were pissing their diapers.

    There is nothing more disheartening than watching your team screw up the rebuilding and have to start from scratch. The younger fans today, not all but many, think that being a good fan is simply a matter of putting on your team's jersey and jumping up and down when your team scores a meaningless goal. They have no idea. But they'll learn.

    I think I'll wait for more of those fans to come back to HTR. But there are some really good fans here who love to debate hockey and they're the only reason why I would bother visiting this site every so often.

  13. leafy says:

    Well I hope you're right and Burke doesn't go for "win now". I'm skeptical (his pride will get in the way) but I'm willing to wait.

  14. the_word says:

    I almost never get the last word in these things.

  15. the_word says:

    If I'm still watching hockey in my mid forties, I'm considered myself a failure.

    I seem to have struck a cord, though.

  16. leafy says:

    Good man. If Burke screws up, don't be afraid to say so.  Tough (but fair) fans are needed to keep management alert.

  17. leafy says:

    Who said I'm in my mid forties?

    Secondly, you're an idiot.  I know a lot of successful people at work who are in their 40s, 50s and 60s, and many are huge Leaf fans.

    You've just proven you're not a hockey fan.  A true hockey fan would never say he would not watch hockey when he's older.

    This might explain why you never talk hockey here.

  18. bbruins37 says:

    nope dont like the pats at all. nice try though

  19. the_word says:

    This is like a lame after school special.

    Leafy, Lafleur, bbruins…. These are the HTRs that should be regarded with high esteem?

    I've clearly made petty comments in this exchange. Some I regret making, this is what annoys me about HTR, people who push these things, take themselves too seriously (as made evident of this thread I'm guilty of this as well). I'm simply enjoy HTR when they're is a sense of playfulness, some tongue and cheek shots being made, however when literalists, Truth mongers and trolls (see beginning of posts) get bent of shape we find ourselves in these exchanges.

    I've grown bored with HTR and people who take offense to every post that critical to them with no sense of humor. Leafy you've been a dick all season and so far (not your viewpoints but directly to me), I've been accommodating, you've exhausted my patience. Don't simply pin this on me by saying you just wanna talk hockey. You joyless pit of innane boredom.


  20. bbruins37 says:

    i think it would actually help to be reading at the level of a twelve year old when reading your posts. you keepsaying wait until the picks are made (theye obviously going to be top picks anyways)and for them to develop. however, you are just assuming that kessel will only progress and that he'll be a 40 goal guy and blah blah blah.

    also, i welcome criticism. it only gives me a chance to prove you guys wrong as you guys always are.

    all of you leaf fans bash players. everyone was saying that kessel was overrated and couldonly play because of savard. now, everyone has done a 180

  21. the_word says:

    This one is rhetorical right?

  22. the_word says:

    Childlike oversimplification, one can be a fan of Burke and still critical of him.

  23. bbruins37 says:

    ok, good kramer II. hopefully this means you will now spare the forum of all of your non-hockey related BS and go find yourself a nice philosophy forum.

  24. reinjosh says:

    again both sides have neither won nor lost
    we are a long way from making judgment
    as i have said all along
    and i dont believe i ever said that of kessel
    and you have been right about him being streaky
    and when have you ever been right
    oh right, always in that fantastical little mind fo yours
    still cant answer anything i said
    you misdirect all the time and never answer a question straight

  25. the_word says:

    If I'm 40+ and take hockey half as seriously as you do, if I talk down to people on the interwebs about it, put a *****ing in my head.

  26. the_word says:

    Call me kramer II and watch it not catch on bbrutal.

    Reading over this thread you don't talk hockey either. 

    I'm not going restrict my expressions to accommodate people no one takes interest in (i.e. you).

  27. bbruins37 says:

    so basically its never fair to judge atrade right after it happens then. have you ever judged a trade right away?

  28. bbruins37 says:

    so basically its never fair to judge atrade right after it happens then. have you ever judged a trade right away?

  29. the_word says:

    And he laughs at his own lame posts….

    FACT, FACT, FACT…. Hockey Hockey Hockey… Never express yourself… that's fun…. yawn… win.

  30. leafy says:

    No I mean literally, go f*ck yourself.

  31. bbruins37 says:

    kramer II can be my pet name for you; no worries.

    and you miss the point. obviously im not talking hockey here (no one is). my point is that you never talk about hockey. ever.

  32. HABSSTAR says:

    Word you're the biggest douche on this site.  Anytime anyone dares point out that thus far Burke has been all sizzle and no steak you're on them like there's no tomorrow. 

    The guy has fallen flat on his face, and frankly I don't think it could have happened to a better guy.  Could he still turn it around in 5-6 years.  Yeah, it's possible but that massive ego of his is gonna make it pretty hard.  For example he's probably going to make bad trades to get help right now to keep the leafs from finishing with a lottery pick of course he'll say it's him "still gunning for the playoffs" but in reality it's him trying to cover his own ass. 

    Why do you think he's all over the place suggesting GMs should start trading now?  Because he'll be able to pull his moves to stay out of the lottery and cover it as a push towards the playoffs.  Come March 3rd the Leafs might be out of the playoff picture and then that excuse will only be bought by the true kool-aid drinkers. 


  33. bbruins37 says:

    i know i can be an asshole, but youre just a f.ucking douchebag. go get a life. by the way you talk its pretty obvious youre a huge nerd. go back to failing life with that philosophy degree

  34. the_word says:

    Do talk about anything other than my philosophy degree you little social butterfly you.

  35. bbruins37 says:

    nah im done with you. you say you regret making some comments and then say something like that to leafy.

    ive got you pretty much labelled. i remember you said you were a philosophy major as if it was a good thing too. hahaha

    peace, failure

  36. leafy says:

    Bbruins, don't bother with this idiot. Just ignore all his posts.

  37. bbruins37 says:

    done and done

  38. the_word says:

    Ahhhh, all my pets licking each other's wounds.

  39. the_word says:

    Lafleur, Leafy, bbruins.

    Nice to see your true colours.

    RIP Leafy

  40. KingCanada says:

    Wow seriously….some of u guys are real babies….

    Cheer for the Raptors instead, they beat Kobe Bryant and the Lakers the other night! 😉

  41. reinjosh says:

    your impossible to talk with
    its useless talking with all that air in your head

  42. lafleur10 says:

    well said bbruins, well said! by the turd doesn't !alk hockey because he clearly lacks knowledge of the sport

  43. lafleur10 says:

    by the turd if your bored with us why don't you  do us a favor and leave! at least leafy and bbruins talk hockey and know what they are talking about!they don't talk about philisofical crap and the b.s. that you do! i myself rather enjoy leafy and bbruins! they tell it like it is  along with my fellow habs fan THENOTORIOUS,CAREYPRICE31 HABSSTAR these are the guys that make this site fun,even cam7777,and mojo,reinjosh are fun but you,by the turd are a pit of innane boredom

  44. dumbassdoorman says:

    WOW…more comments on the Leafs not being interested in Kovy than most articles get. I think they are right to not pursue him depending on figures and term. he alone will not turn the francise around.

  45. leafy says:

    Hey KingCanada, you should read the thread, it's more entertaining than any action movie. My favorite part is when I told Word to go f*ck himself.

  46. KingCanada says:

    LOL I would but theres too much…and my internet is only fast enough to do so much at a time….internet poker it is!! haha

    (I get most of my HTRing at work with the quick net haha)

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