McCabe, McCabe, McCabe!!!
I’m fully aware that posts have been made with regards to Bryan McCabe’s poor playing ability, but I felt that tonights loss against the Buffalo Sabres in overtime, really emphasizes the frustration of Leafs fans with this particular player. Game in and game out, one cannot accuse McCabe of being inconsistent; although his consistency is of a negative nature. He continues to be a (-) minus player this season, and has even lost his scoring touch.
Prior to the NHL lockout, in the age of the ‘can-opener’, McCabe was a highly touted defense man, until the new rules took precedent, and all he was left with was a hard point shot. However, teams quickly adapted to this point shot, and his ability defensively, as well as offensively has continuously declined. I’m not sure whether it’s the new rules, the ridiculous contract ($5.75 million a year on average), or a combination between the two, but he does not deserve a starting position at this point in time.
Perhaps what is needed for McCabe is a change of scenery; either send him down to the minor leagues, or trade him (I’ve heard speculation of his desire to play in New York, for the Islanders). I honestly believe that Ferguson should put his pride behind him, and ask McCabe to waive his no-trade clause, similar to what was done to Redden by Bryan Murray. The fact of the matter is, our top three defense men make upwards of $15 million a year, and continue to be one of the worst defensive tandems in the entire NHL (with the exception of Kaberle). I know many may ask, ‘who will fill the position?’. The answer is quite simple; give an opportunity to another young prospect, such as Straalman. Whether this be a temporary or permanent solution, there is no denying that competition, and change is needed.
By continuing on with this charade, the Maple Leafs organization is doing nothing but hinder its own hockey operation by placing a barrier in their winning ability, as well as with their cap situation. I realize there will be a lot of posts affirming my position, but my real question to all of you is, ‘what will it take for the Toronto Maple Leafs to realize the defensive situation (e.g. McCabe), and how long will they allow their franchise to suffer before they actually do something about this problem? I look forward to all of your responses. Thank you.