Leafs GM has centre on Christmas list

Is Brian Burke busy working the phones?

As the NHL’s Dec. 19 Christmas roster freeze approaches, the talk is the Toronto GM has been trying to land a top centre — with the Maple Leafs attempting to stay in the playoff race.

As was reported in this space last week, the belief is Burke has already laid the groundwork to deal for Dallas centre Brad Richards. But it is expected the Stars won’t deal Richards until the Feb. 29 trade deadline approaches.

There’s talk the Leafs could be talking to Anaheim GM Bob Murray, who wouldn’t mind shaking up the Ducks. Anaheim would likely want a defenceman in any deal.

Time is ticking since Burke has a self-imposed trade deadline of 10 days before the Christmas freeze.

“They may need a centre, but I don’t know who is going to give him one,” said a league executive. “Plus, he doesn’t have a whole lot of assets to trade.”


The roster for Canada’s national junior team will be announced Monday. Officials from Hockey Canada are waiting for an answer, but they will likely be loaned D Brayden Schenn from the Kings. He is on a two-week conditioning stint with the AHL’s Manchester Monarchs. If Schenn ends up back in the WHL this year, he could be dealt from Brandon to Portland so he can get a run at playing in the Memorial Cup. A player not eligible: Edmonton C Taylor Hall. He didn’t attend the mandatory summer camp. Scouts wonder if the Oilers would like a “do-over” on that decision … There is no timetable for Boston C Marc Savard’s return from post-concussion syndrome, but he’s skating with the team and will be ready in the near future, which means Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli is going to have to make a move. The Bruins could bury a contract in the minors, but if they decide to move a blueliner, there are plenty of teams looking for help on defence.


If the Rangers decide to go get a centre, and they’re expected to make a move for Richards before the trade deadline, they may deal D Matt Gilroy as part of package. The 26-year-old has a cap hit of $1.75 million and will be an RFA next summer. He’s been passed on the depth chart by Steve Eminger and Michael Sauer. Gilroy is young enough that he could bring return. GM Glen Sather can’t afford to wait much longer … The Blue Jackets are still looking for an offensive blueliner, especially with the club in contention. Columbus GM Scott Howson could have an interest in the Senators’ Chris Campoli … Pittsburgh GM Ray Shero will likely go shopping for a Top 6 winger. Don’t be surprised if the Penguins make a pitch for Florida LW Cory Stillman. He’s going to be part of the cash cleanup by Panthers’ GM Dale Tallon and has Stanley Cup rings from Tampa (2004) and Carolina (2006) … The Oilers might be willing to move C Andrew Cogliano and D Ladislav Smid.

Have a nice Sunday.


38 Responses to Leafs GM has centre on Christmas list

  1. leafs_r_a_joke says:

    Landing a top line center with no decent picks and no players that anybody would want other than the 3 players who are apparently the core of the Leafs that Burke would likely never trade (Kadri, kessel, Schenn)

    Good luck Burke.

    Don't say "But we got Phaneuf, our amazing captain, for nothing more than spare parts". How's that worked out for you?

    37GP 2G 12A -8.

    Brutal numbers for what leaf fans would say "one of the best young defenseman in the game".

  2. The-President says:

    The Kings will end up with him, they have the pieces and the picks to move, they're a Stanley Cup favorite, and Richards ultimately calls the shots as to where he ends up. Where would you rather end up, a bottom feeder, or a Contender? They missed out on Kovalchuk, they'll make it up to their fans with this big acquisition, mind you they're not the exact type of players, but he holds star power, leadership, playoff experience, and most of all a Stanley Cup ring.

  3. 93killer93 says:

    I wonder what it would take to get Cogliano. I think if he's cheap enough he's definately worth taking a risk on. 

  4. reinjosh says:

    The Kings won't end up with him because he doesn't fit a need they have. Adding him would be an utter waste of assets. They don't need another playmaker, they need a scorer and Richards is not a scorer.

  5. Leafs_the_word says:

    1. The Kings have an ultra conservative GM that doesn't ever make trades or signs free agents.

    2.  The Kings made the playoffs for the first time in eons and didn't make it out of the first round? How the hell does that make them favorites?  They're a playoff team nothing more.

  6. The-President says:

    Bottom Line, the addition of Brad Richards to the Kings roster would only improve the team, not make it worse.

  7. The-President says:

    The LA Kings are basically the equivalent of the Blackhawks, maybe not as stacked as they were, but still a very up and coming young talented team. If you don't consider them favorites, tell me who do you? 

    A few teams from each conference are favored, I'd say out of the West – LA, Detroit, San Jose. East, Boston, Pitts, Washington. Not saying these are written in stone, but they have a better chance then others. The addition of Brad Richards to the Kings would only make them better, and since the Kings have stated they'd be in the running for his services, I'd say they would have more to offer then any other team out there. You can't deny that the GM of the Kings didn't make a run at Kovalchuk this summer, yes they play hardball, but not as conservative as one would think.
  8. The-President says:

    5, 10" 184 pounds, too small, not an impact player, and never will be, not what the Leafs need at the moment. He's worse then Matt Stajan, and that's not saying much.

  9. mojo19 says:

    Equivilent to the Blackhawks??

    Hawks were loaded with talent… Hossa, Kane, Toews, Sharp as their top 4 forwards and then guys like Versteeg, Byfuglien, Bolland, to compliment them. The Kings have a good club but nothing like that. Only Kopitar compares to Toews, Kane, and Hossa.

  10. palindrom says:

    hey leafs fans, i am a habs fan, so lets try to agree on a trade…

    Gomez + Georges,

    Komisarek + (Vesteeg or Armstrong)

    Cap space is even, you get your Center, we get our missing winger.

    you take the horrible gomez contract, but we take the komisarek one,  you get a better younger D than komisarek.

    If you can wait, i would be willing to offer you a bit more at the end of the season,  george's contract will need to be renewed, so he worth more now than this summer.

    Any taker? I will listen to your offer.

  11. Leafs_the_word says:

    The Kings lost to a team that the Hawks walked all over last season.  They'll make the playoffs but they'll be lucky to make the 2nd round. 

    In the West, Detroit, Vancouver, Chicago and SJ (they'll bounce back) remain favorites to make it to the cup finals.  St.Louis, LA, Phoenix are just filler, these teams haven't proved anything yet.

    My point is that they should have landed Kovalchuk but they wanted to get in negotiations and get him on their terms, that cost them.  Lombardi has a history of not being able to land UFAs or make big trades.  Given that, his interest in Richards is inconsequential.

  12. Leafs_the_word says:

    I said all summer that the Kings are overrated, I also said the Bluejackets would surprise people as a darkhorse, what do I know though.

  13. reinjosh says:

    Again, what's the use of getting another playmaker (Kopitar is the one they have now) when they don't have anyone to put the pucks in the net? Its a useless acquisition and I guarantee you they will not make a play for Richards.

  14. reinjosh says:

    If Lombardi went after Richards, he should be fired. The teams needs are a second line center and a sniper, neither of which Richards is.

  15. reinjosh says:

    Your going to be hard pressed to find a single Leaf's fan who would ever take Gomez.

  16. palindrom says:

    well, i agreee he have a terrible negative trade value it had been a mistake to get him from the start, but in my opinion komisarek and armstrong have negative trade value too (we let komisarek go because he wanted more than 4 millions, so why would we want to trade player for him, unless we give negative value too).

    I think we could work a trade around him since you need a center. what would it take? He have a bad season so far, but if we look at his stats he is around the 15th centerman who get the most pass  in the league in the last 10 season.

  17. reinjosh says:

    Armstrong doesn't have negative value and neither does Komisarek. Small value for Komisarek does not equal negative value. I would take him over Gomez any day of the week. At the end of the day Komisarek does his job but gets overpaid for it. Good team player. Gomez is nothing more than an overpaid 2nd line centerman.

    Between the two, I would no doubt choose Komisarek. Leaves us with more money and cap space for the same length. I want no part of Gomez and I can tell you most of Leaf nation would agree with me.

  18. MystifoLeafs says:

    If it was the Gomez i grew up watching on the New Jersey Devils sure but at this moment its pretty hard. 

  19. mojo19 says:

    I'd love to get rid of Komisarek but I would not be down to deal Versteeg or Armstrong.

    I guess both Komisarek and Gomez have 3 years left on their deal so that could be an interesting starting point for a trade.

  20. palindrom says:

    Negative trade value mean a player that no one would take for free if he was on the waiver.

    I think that apply to armstrong and komisarek, both signed for the team that gave them the most money when they was UFA, that mean no other team in the league was willing to sign them for their contract. Finger is an example, last year leafs fan was trading him for late draft pick while i was telling them he had no value at all.

    Again… Why komisarek could have any trade value for montreal if we refused to sign him as UFA at 4 million while he is making 4.5 million now ? Its not like his game improved dramatically.

    Well, gomez have a terrible negative value, more than komisarek i agree.
    Thats why i add a positive value player (george) while im willing to take any other negative value player on your team. (except giguere)

  21. mojo19 says:

    Lombardi has done a good job in drafting but he's kind of a pu ssy when it comes to trades and UFA's. I think he's a bit of a lame duck GM.

  22. TheLeafNation91 says:

    Gomez is the worst contract in the league…6 points for 8 million is bad you have to admit. And whats worse, its long-term!

    Armstrong and Komisarek are granted over-paid, but they have played solid for the Leafs and i'll take that any day!!!

  23. TheLeafNation91 says:

    I MISS ARMSTRONG AND PHANEUF…Can`t believe I`m saying it but theirs no leadership, they look like the team before Dion came. A team without an identity and running around for 60 minutes doing squat.

    The top 6 are aall under 25 years…That`s scary when you have no one to lead them.

    Send down Bozak and Gunarsson, sophmore slump kicked them in the ass hard!!!!!! They need some fine-tuning.

    Call up Irwin, granted he`s far from ready but he`s huge and could clog the middle.

    Fire Wilson

  24. palindrom says:

    gomez have one of the top 10 worst contrac,t but not the worst one: huet, souray, redden have a contract so bad, they dont even play in the league now.

    I would still take gomez over dipietro and drury.

  25. Leafs420 says:

    This is why i can never agree with mr president because he comes on here and says no matter what kings are getting richards and no matter what anyone says its nope my way or the highway i know everything before it happens LA is getting him lol. 

  26. frankinboltonleafs says:

    I kinda like Gomez in a habs uniform. He looks good in it. You should hang on to him.

  27. realistic_leafs_fan says:

    Pretty hard to compare the Hawks roster of last year and the Kings roster this year and say they are equal.

    The Hawks were better up-front and better on the back-end.

    As for Richards…Who knows where he will end up. Maybe he some how re-signs or ends up with a team we never imagined. As of right now…I don't see LA as the front runner though. Just my thoughts.

  28. realistic_leafs_fan says:

    LOL Nice try Habs Fan…but you’re stuck with Gomez.

  29. DannyLeafs says:

    Komisarek would likely be a hard sell, but it wouldn't shock me if someone took a chance on him. He is playing reasonably well in a top four role right now, and despite a few brain cramps plays a solid game for the majority of time he is on the ice. Armstrong would likely be taken early if he was on waivers. 3 million is a little bit of an overpayment, but not catastrophic, and lots of teams would love his energy and grit.

    I would take drury, Souray or Huet over Gomez. Mostly because they are short enough deals that they can be buried. Also, Drury is better for the money then Gomez. Drury is a very overpaid 3rd line shut down centre with decetn offensive upside. Gomez is a mediocre second line centre. Drury has just two years left. I think a great (put overpiad) 3rd line center has much more value then a weak (and equally overpaid) 2nd line center any day of the week. Obviously sometimes a second line centre is only looks bad because they should be playing third line in many cases, but I also wouldn't want Gomez as my third line center either. At least the things Drury is supposed to do well he actually does well (kills penalties, plays great defensively) where Gomez goes way too long without doing the things he is supposed to do.

  30. mojo19 says:

    I could see Komisarek being put on waivers but not Colby Armstrong, he's a good player at a decent cap hit. Its maybe a little high but not that bad.

  31. mojo19 says:

    great comment. I'm with you.

  32. The-President says:

    What would it take to land Cody Hodgson? Although a great prospect, he seems expendable to the Canucks, given his injury history. It could be worth taking a chance on him, but like I said, wonder what it would take, and what are the Nucks needs?

    Also, anyone know what ever happened to Al Montoya, the goalie drafted 6 overall by the Rangers. I know he's on the Coyotes AHL team now, I'm just wondering why it seems like he was never given a fair chance in the big leagues. He seems to have the tools, good numbers, and had a brief 4 game stint in the NHL, which included a shutout, along with good play and numbers as well. He's 26 years old now, and still in the AHL, I'd think he'd atleast be a backup if anything. I wouldn't mind the Leafs trading for him, once Giguere is gone, he should be in the NHL.
  33. leafskadri93 says:

    Brad Richards rocking the blue and white would be sooo sick, but i have major doubts it would happen this year. We have no assets that we can afford to trade.

  34. leafskadri93 says:

    Komi wanted 4 million because the fans voted him to start in the all-star game….

  35. lukeleim says:

    Just for fun I thought I'd post trade proposals for the most available franchise players in the NHL.

    Trade Nazam Kadri, Francois Beauchemin, Clarke MacArthur, James Reimer, Greg McKegg and the Maple Leafs' 1st and 2nd round drafts pick of 2012 to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Evgeni Malkin.

    Nikolai Kulemin – Evgeni Malkin – Phil Kessel
    Luca Caputi – Mikhail Grabovski – Kris Versteeg
    Fredrik Sjostrom – Tyler Bozak – Colby Armstrong
    Mike Brown – Tim Brent – Colton Orr

    Trade Carl Gunnarsson, Nazem Kadri, Clarke MacArthur, James Reimer and the Maple Leafs 1st and 2nd round draft picks of 2012 to the New Jersey Devils for Zach Parise.

    Zach Parise – Tyler Bozak – Phil Kessel
    Nikolai Kulemin – Mikhail Grabovski – Kris Versteeg
    Fredrik Sjostrom – Tim Brent – Colby Armstrong
    Mike Brown – Christian Hanson – Colton Orr

    Trade Tyler Bozak, Francois Beauchemin, Luca Caputi, Greg McKegg and the Leafs 1st round draft pick of 2012 to the Ottawa Senators Jason Spezza.

    Nazem Kadri – Jason Spezza – Phil Kessel
    Clarke MacArthur – Mikhail Grabovski – Nikolai Kulemin
    Kris Versteeg – Tim Brent – Colby Armstrong
    Fredrik Sjostrom/Mike Brown – Christian Hanson – Colton Orr

  36. lukeleim says:

    I regret posting this.

  37. dumbassdoorman says:

    LOL……I guess you do, lol……..good ideas just giving up way too much in most scenerios is my opinion, but I like the basic outlay

  38. mojo19 says:

    haha, its okay luke. I like the creativity, but ya Kadri and McKegg have to be held onto.

    Greg McKegg was player of the week in the OHL AGAIN last week. oh baby. This guy is a beauty

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