JFJ Has a 'Plan'

JFJ Has a Plan

Mar 9, 2006.

Beating the Habs Wednesday night must have inflated JFJ’s renewed optimism leading him to believe that his struggling Leafs can make the playoffs. A noble attempt. Here we see the organization behind the decisions at Deadline 2006. Restructure – as opposed to rebuild – or make a bid for the playoffs. Fans cried for the former. MLSE called for profits … oops, I meant, playoffs.

Enter Luke Richardson. Bye Ken Klee.

This must have been part of the ‘plan’ JFJ spoke about prior to the season’s onset. This was where the Leafs were to have a plan in place to be competitive. Not only this year, oh no, but into the future as well. He expressed, said sentiment, of long term moves in recent interviews at Deadline 2006. Then, turned around and picked up a veteran.

Huh?When was it prudent to acquire a veteran as part of a ‘plan’ for the future? Or was the help for the long term supposed to come in the form of Alexander Suglobov, acquired from NJ for Ken Klee? The Richardson deal has more repercussions than first meets the eye.

JFJ had two choices going into Deadline 2006. He could have plotted out the course of the Leafs future, perhaps according to a plan. He had to have made inquiries into moving some bodies, even just to gauge market value. One can’t think that he was just sitting back doing nothing. Instead of finding fair value, he found – to his own doing, mind you – teams weren’t offering fair value for Leaf assets. This made selling a less likely possibility. The Leafs found, there was not a market for the assets, not sellers.

McCabe, Sundin, Belfour, perhaps a Tucker, all could have been moved for a youth movement, complimented by off-season moves, starting the process.

Fine, it is prudent not to make a deal, for the sake of making a change, if you cant get something in return of value. But it was the Leafs that put themselves in this position in the first place, signing Belfour to a crazy deal, making him untradeable at Deadline 2006. A 2 yr offer to Tie Domi? (Decent marketing move to have him celebrate the 1000th game of his career as a Leaf.) A highlight of this lowly season. Sundin, albeit a decent player, is not worth 6 or 7 mill to a team. Tucker is too cheap to trade at $1.6 mil and another year to go. Other GM’s knowing that there is desperation in Leafland, probably tried to milk it for all its worth. So for JFJ to just make the deals he did for Richardson and Klee, with his hands as tied as possible, he didn’t do, that bad. There will not be any more significant deals made by the Leafs, this season.

Enter ‘The Plan.’

The hockey man would have began the restructuring. Take the loss for the season, and get better, with the team in mind. But then, this is the Leafs, more succinct, MLSE. Business said, ‘playoffs.’ Lockout losses had to be made up. Was the team prior to the lockout only destined to go as deep in the playoffs as they could, to recoup – in advance – lost revenue from a looming locked out season, and not a Stanley Cup.

They beat the Habs, Tuesday night. Next option, a run to make the playoffs. It’s difficult to win the amount of games to stay afloat, let alone move ahead in the standings. They also have a dependency on other teams, like the Habs and Thrashers (who won last night), losing in order to gain in the standings. If they make the playoffs, it shows the commitment to making the post season, and with the run up of a glut of teams in the bottom of the conference, it will be an accomplishment, lauded by MLSE and die hard fans. If they miss the playoffs, the excuse becomes, well, we made a valiant effort, and have learned a lot. Either way, the fan hears one side from the organization, while doing something contradictory to what they say.

Are the Leafs a better team with Richardson? Maybe. For MLSE, it’s make the budget of a season and one playoff round. Profits. Get as much as they can, and stay as close to budget as possible. This puts JFJ in a terrible position. Appease the fans, the HOCKEY fans, not business fans, and possibly be fired, (remember Fletcher?) or appease the board, perhaps save his job in the process.

He chose the latter, adding a spin of making the playoffs, and anything happening. Even if it was out of necessity, it was his own doing, with this mysterious plan. It makes one come to the conclusion that the only plan in place is the same one going on since the Ballard days. Fleece the fan, make the money, with a shoddy product.

For Leafs fans everywhere hope this plan improves quickly.

15 Responses to JFJ Has a 'Plan'

  1. epfq says:

    What JFJ is trying to do is make the smartest moves possible without screwing up our salary cap space come july 1st when he can sign alot of free agents.. the leafs are only commited to 10 players with only 20 million towards those ten… Every stinkin leaf fan over the past few weeks have been begging and pleading for the leafs to make stupid trades .. WHY!?!?!? wait till july 1st and let john friggin ferguson make some magic happen.. with over 18 mill to spend im sure there will be alot to talk about in the summer for all of u bums with nothing else to do!

  2. Kats says:

    Is that part of the plan??

    Leafs are trying to move Belfour.

    At least he’s trying to do something right.

  3. Aetherial says:

    18 million wont go NEARLY as far as you think. They will still have to sign a bunch of players to fill their roster. Some will be cheap… but there will be nowhere near 18 million to go sign a bunch of saviors.

    If the Leafs do nothing else… it will be a HORRIBLE deadline for them. No significant improvement on D, No cost savings, No real tangible improvement in the future… only a hopeful prospect.

    Worst of all, This will also mean that McCabe gets signed for a ridiculous amount and term and we are stuck with that contract for 4 or 5 years … and I bet it means that Ed Belfour will be playing goal for the Leafs next year a 4mil+ … giving them a lot less to spend on Free Agents in the off-season.

    I see nothing but a very very bleak outlook for Leaf fans, because MLSE wants every chance possible to squeeze a few more million out of a couple playoff games… so JFJ could not go out and do what was right, which was have a firesale.

  4. Aetherial says:

    Still think he has a plan?

    Was that plan to build for the future, or try to make a run to get to the playoffs this year?

    He accomplished neither.

  5. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    I agree, you might like the article I just submitted.

  6. epfq says:

    hey aetherial.. or whatever your name is.. the seasons not over yet so how could they not have accomplished making the playoffs, and how do u build for the future at the trade deadline.. thats usually done in the offseason no?!?! GET SOME BRAINS LEAF FANSSSSSS!!!! i agree that they should have done more at the deadline but not most of the things that people are suggesting!!!

  7. Guero says:

    You are the type of garbage, ignorant leafs fan that gives this proud organization a bad name. The Leafs are not going to accomplish anything even if they did make the playoffs- and trust me they are not going to make it. I have been a Leaf fan my whole life but it is time to smarten up and do the right thing for the Leafs not for the playoffs, not for the budget but for the fans and the Stanley Cup. There will be no Cup until people are able to understand that. Think about the future. Look at the teams that are standing on top of the world right now, and look at where they were five years ago (with the exception to a few teams that were smart enough to save for the future ie. Detroit.) In order to go anywhere in the NHL you need to take some time at the bottom of the standings and regroup. It is time for the Leafs to do this. Give this time, and you will be proud of the Leafs once again.

  8. Guero says:

    Agreed. People have some illusion that 18 million dollars is going to build them a contender. Maybe ten years ago- but in this day and age for some sad reason that seems to be a small figure. It appear for the most part that only home grown talent comes at a cheap price. However, even that is getting expensice ie. Kaberle.

  9. toronto77 says:

    hey leaf fans how did u like Ondrus on tuesday, even domi and kilger looked good, he should defianlty stay on that line till the end of the season, and try calling up foster and subugolov seeing as how our youngsters have been playing well this season.

  10. the_canadian_game says:

    they should definitely call suglobov up i want to see how he plays. from ehat i know, hes an offensive guy, maybe hed work well with sundin.

  11. Kats says:

    I like yours too…

    Leafs stink…

  12. Kats says:

    Plan’s pretty clear.

    Be bad, but make boatloads of money doing it.

  13. Kats says:

    one of the most sensible arguments Ive heard so far.

  14. Oley says:

    nah man suglobov most deffently will not be playin with sundin. remember pohl he was playing awesome. and quinn put him on the marlies for who was it again i think it was eather domi or belak. doesnt matter if this kid scores a hat trick in his 1st game. quinn will put him on the marlies, becauses hes a nazi or something. him and JFJ. its so obvious that were out of the playoff run. what a weak trade deadline. we didnt even trade mccabe. i really hope JFJ knows what he is doing. i dont know maybe JFJ’s plan is to rebuild but cant do it cause the fans r so crazy here. so hes making small moves and to resign mccabe or say goodbye and sign freeagents to replace him. who knows maybe in 2 more seasons we might pull it together. im prepared to be disapointed once again next season and the 1 after. BUT MAYBE ONE DAY when im 90 they will WIN! lol

    Can they still resign players now that the trade deadline is over????

  15. Aetherial says:

    Plan =

    Who cares about the future. Let’s not learn from our past, or take the time to really clean house and rebuild…

    let’s just try to squeak into the playoffs to improve our bottom-line by 2 million.

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