Won't Get Fooled Again

This time, I’ll pass on the koolaid because I’m not buying this for a second. The mystery of Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment remains unresolved and not even Sherlock Holmes or Horatio Caine would be able to figure this one out.

Decision day has finally come and gone in Leaf Nation and with such fanfare the fat has been cut. John Ferguson was mercifully let go as GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs. After being strung along for weeks, months for that matter, the not-so-quick thinking Board of Directors finally decided enough was enough and that it was time for a change.

On the surface, it certainly appears as though major change has ripped through MLSE and that a new fresh beginning is about to take place. Ferguson, the much maligned GM, was finally removed and with that went the appearance of being overwhelmed, the total lack of innovation and the mass confusion that defined his tenure with the Leafs.

This change has apparently ushered in a new era for the Blue and White as they look towards the future and look to begin the long road back to being Stanley Cup contenders. They have done so, going back into the past hiring Cliff Fletcher to be the interim GM until the organization can find a permanent replacement for the job as President and GM of the hockey team.

Fletcher brings a wealth of experience to the franchise and brings some respectability back that was lost over the past few unsuccessful campaigns.
He will now be entrusted to take the team to the next step, carrying them past the trade deadline and into the Entry Draft in June. Quite possibly, he will be entrusted as well with the dealings over the free agency period this coming July. While his tenure will be short term, there is a significant amount for him to accomplish as he lays the groundwork for the permanent man coming in at some point in the near future.

He will also give his input on the hiring process of that new person coming in to run the hockey department. He will assist CEO Richard Peddie and newly hired consultant Gordon Kirke in the decision of who becomes the next person in charge of the Maple Leafs hockey team.

And here is where they start passing the kool-aid and feeling the propaganda. Hearing the words Richard Peddie, Involvement, Decisions and Maple Leafs hockey team altogether is enough to make the perfectly healthy vomit.

The fact that Peddie is still involved in the decisions made by the company in relation to the hockey team have led me to believe that simply nothing has been accomplished today.

Though Ferguson needed to be let go due to his ineptness on the job in this market, its really Peddie who needed to be given the boot as well.

I am truly amazed how he was able to negotiate his way to remain as CEO, to be a key member in the decision making process of hiring a new President/GM and continue to be an influencial and powerful person within the company and hockey department despite his own ineptness and stupidity over his tenure in charge of MLSE and their sports ventures.

It is clear to me that there is no one within MLSE who has any knowledge or ability to understand what it takes to create a winning successful hockey team. To allow a man who has failed miserably in hiring people to be the caretakers of the sports teams this company owns, is utterly shocking. I can only expect that the worst is yet to come for this franchise. This really tells me that those in power at MLSE are idiots and/or they simply do not care how poorly things are done, how poorly the company is perceived so long as pockets are lined with a healthy dose of profits.

While Peddie will be assisted by Gord Kirke, a well connected lawyer within the hockey community, the fact he has even the slightest grasp on any of the hockey decisions is a scary proposition for Leaf Nation and its fans.

One of the biggest things that needed change was the philosophy, direction and process this organization has staunchly stood by the last 40 years. This overhaul was a necessity in the healing process for this pathetic franchise but instead we are faced with the possibility of living through more ineptness, more dithering, more stupidity, more hidden agendas and more quick fix ways to earn a few extra dollars.

While the statement “John Ferguson Fired” clearly shows that change was made, if you noticed the fine print, you’ll notice that things are relatively status quo, save for an office in need of filling.

The biggest issue at hand is the fact that the board of directors remain split on what to do and who to hire. This singlehandedly could keep the Leafs in ruins for years to come.

Chairman Larry Tanenbaum was not a big Fletcher supporter and in fact it was he who originally was instrumental in ousting Fletcher the first time around a decade ago.

On the other hand Peddie was key in endorsing Fletcher and getting sign off from his bosses to proceed with this change.

This isnt the first time, nor do i expect this to be the last that Peddie and Tanenbaum have a difference in opinion. While thats going to happen in big companies, it feels that these differences are more out of spite than anything tangible or for the greater good. They differed on Ferguson, they differed on Bowman. Its hard to fathom them agreeing wholeheartedly on a replacement without a few hidden agendas getting in the way.

The infighting has to stop, but its clear, the egos here are too big that it will be improbable for there not to be disagreements along the way. In the past, this has always led to the dreaded compromise that has in a big way crippled the team the last several years. The Ferguson hiring was a compromise, the decision not to fire him in the summer was a compromise resulting in the failed search for an advisor another foolish compromise. And even now, this hiring process, where Peddie retained some control joining Kirke was a bit of a compromise as well.

While Kirke was formerly a lawyer for Peddie, he is also very close and well connected to Dale Lastman and his family. Lastman of course is one of the board members and has been one of the few who have sided with Tanenbaum, opposing Peddie in the process.

While I am glad at least a respected outsider is in on the decision making process, i cannot put it past MLSE to find a way to screw this up. The history leading up to today, and the events that happened this January 22nd, 2008, tell me that more doom and gloom lies ahead.

This is not a mark against Fletcher who is a good hockey man and an improvement over Ferguson. But this stench of stop gap measures and 2nd rate decision making still reeks from the confines of the ACC.

Honestly, the best in the business, the Ken Hollands, Brian Burkes, of the world are considered the best for a reason. They dont do stupid things and get themselves in foolish situations. There is no way that they or any other strong, legitimate candidate would be willing to accept a move to Toronto if it meant dealing with this foolish group of owners and board members.

Its not just the infighting.

Its the fact the CEO needs to be involved in the decisions. Its the fact the board still needs to rubber stamp any major decisions like a hiring, a firing or a big trade and that the same people ready to hire you are still looking over your shoulder where you know at a moments notice they will throw you under the next bus like your predecessor.

Its clear, autonomy in their minds means something completely different than what any one else in this world thinks. Its clear, those who have nearly left this franchise in ruins, cannot see any wrongdoing and thus will maintain things as they stand, save for John Ferguson.

They can boast today and rejoice at what they’ve done and be enthusiastic about all of this like they’ve cured world hunger. But I for one am not buying it. The change the organization needed didnt happen. Because of that, we’re set up to witness more failure that now we have become accu
stomed to seeing from MLSE. Do I hope I end up being wrong on this? Definitely, but with this vicious cycle continuing, I can, like most Leaf fans, live on hope, but taste bitter reality.

44 Responses to Won't Get Fooled Again

  1. BruMagnus says:

    Great post!
    I'm not buying it either, until the product has been successfully sold.

  2. Kramer says:

    Don't you people see what's going on here?  There's a Leaf conspiracy going on. The owners of MLSE don't want a championship because it will cool off cup starved fans. And that's what continues to feed the coffers of MLSE. People wake up and smell the coffee. There's a conspiracy going on.

  3. leafy says:

    You're right on so many angles Nords.  Watching yesterday's press conference, Peddie didn't even deny that there's meddling going on from the top.  All he did is try to make excuses for it.  I didn't like what I heard the least bit.

  4. leafy says:

    Hey Kramer, where's George?

  5. Armstrong67 says:

    Didn't Peddie say Fletch is in charge to the summer and then the next President and GM will be hired?  Doesn't that mean Peddie is backing off and going into a different role?

    Fletcher got a bad rap in 1997.  In 6 years he turned around what Ballard created, the darkest decade in Leafs history.  And amongst all, he brought you Mats Sundin, who as many people are arguing, he is the best Leaf ever.

    It takes time to build a championship team.  Fletch says he will lay the groundwork.  I beleive him.  He did it for us before.

  6. BruMagnus says:

    Interesting… I'm going to call you David Icke from now on.

  7. leafy says:

    Look like you're quite happy with Fletcher, which is interesting considering that Fletcher traded for Sundin, the guy you say "sucks" in your email address.

  8. nordiques100 says:

    its all the innuendos. fletcher and his replacement have autonomy……but all trades/hrings and such have to go through the board and/or himself.

    peddie backing off from being GM/pres but still the key in who gets hired for the post (meaning it'll still be his choice, not necessarily the best choice based on his ego and track record)

    just all that talk…..his wishywashy response to autonomy questions, to questions about if the team is willling to suck to get better, to him its his job as CEO to be involved, to tanenbaum's responses that winning is most important…..winning now that is….

    the more they spoke, the more perplexed i am about the whole thing. i just cant accept this being a good thing with peddie still in control in some shape or form.

  9. Kramer says:

    Fletcher is in on the MLSE conspiracy too. and Sundin has known about the conspiracy since 1997 but has kept his mouth shut about it to ensure his own personal safety. Gosh you people are so naive.

  10. nordiques100 says:

    i can only be skeptical about the whole thing. i think everyone here and on radio and on blogs and in the papers and on the web and on other boards talked at nausem about how peddie had to go. him sticking around……it just leaves a bitter taste in your mouth. nothings really changed here. its all window dressing.

    no offence to fletcher who is a good hockey guy with tons of experience and success but dont you get the feeling that…..with the time it took to bring him in, was there anyone else even considered? i mean yes the best candidates are working as we speak but i think there was really no one who wanted to do this except for fletcher who was probably thinking its more money in my pocket, its a chance for one last hurrah for a 72 year old and he's back in the spotlight after not hearing much about him the last decade despite working in phoenix.

    i like fletcher and hope he does a good job. but he isnt in the position to do the best job for the Leafs. i dont think anyone ever is when employed in that company.

  11. leaffaninva says:

    Anyway you look at this, even with the infighting within the MSLE board – this move gives the leafs a "respectable" contact in the hockey offices.

    JFJ was not respected (as a great hockey mind) in the NHL community and, was probably easy to sway into making into a bad decision (look at the luggage i.e. Bell,  that Toskala come with). 

    I don't think that Fletcher, in today's hockey structure with the new CBA and Salary Cap will be able to pull the gun on deals like he did in the past however, he'll at least be able to make conscious, long term descisions for the club. 

    The big question is who will fill the void and be willing to work with fletcher's blueprint after his departure???  The polls show that Scotty Bowman and Brian Burke are the two favorites.  Bowman who's a hall of fame Coach and respected around the globe for his keen eye for talent and the strong sense of loyalty everyone under him exudes – he's doesn't really have any proven GM experience.  Burke would be the logical choice but if you were Burke – would you want to work in T.O.?

  12. jarcpitre says:

    First off great article and interesting read. The thing I can't understand is how come you never see Tanenbaum and the guy never seems to have a comment. I personally would like to hear a comment from the guy to see what he really thinks, not just the media voicing their opinions. It always seems to be Peddie in the spotlight, but he seems to be the man running the show to me not Tanenbaum, and a terrible show he's running. Just wondering what everyone's thoughts are on this. You don't even see Tanenbaum at the games.

  13. Kramer says:

    He went down the street to buy a calzone and some soup.

  14. Kramer says:

    Gotta support the team.

  15. leafy says:

    What can Sundin fetch?

    Interesting story.  Check out Pierre McGuire's take on what the Leafs will try to get for Sundin.

    However, Bob Mackenzie says that might not be realistic.


  16. leafy says:

    And it looks like Bob Mackenzie disagrees with Damien Cox on choosing Fletcher as GM.


  17. the_word says:

    Here we go again….. The second Fletcher takes the job, we already have to decide that nothing will change, the Leafs are doomed so long as Peddie is employed by MLSE.  This is what I hate about Leaf Nation, no ever takes a moment to breathe and see what happens before deciding the fate of the team.  Could it possibibly be too early to tell if the Leafs are going to rebuild?  I didn't see Feltcher or Peddie give any impression that the Leafs were interested in the playoffs this year. 

    Again the scapegoating of Peddie continues…  For the moment he is the president of the Leafs, being the president he has ever right to meddle in the affairs of the team.  This has made for a horrible situation over the last few years, however now that he's publically announced that he, Fletcher and Kirke are looking for a new president to take over hockey operations, he still get criticized for it.  Its the same overly pessimistic view that criticized MLSE for going after Bowman for an advisory role in the off season and then criticized MLSE for not getting him in the off season.

    No had full confidence in JFJ abilities during his tenure in Toronto, it was unfortunate, but that being the case, he was on a short leash.  Now that management appears to be moving forward, Peddie, who has made it a priority to give up power of hockey operations for offer a Coangelo type deal to a capable candidate, he's still villified.  Can't win with Leafs some Leafs fans, I guess.

  18. habsrock99 says:

    What I can't understand is why TSN continues to feed the hockey world the bullshit story that Brian Burke might be coming to Toronto. Did anyone happen to hear what Bruke said in an interview a few months back when his name was first mentioned as being JFJ's replacement? He said that he had no interest in going to Toronto as he was in negotiations with the Ducks owners on a contract extention. And he also said that he has 1 year left on his contract and that he doesn't have an out clause. So even if he wanted to, he couldn't be the Leafs GM for another year and a half.

  19. leafy says:

    The Leafs and Rangers are scouting Colorado and Nashville, according to the Denver Post.


  20. Duecey says:

    IMO Fletcher was hired just to get the most return for Mats Sundin, nothing more. He's gone in a few months anyway so this has to be the answer.

  21. nordiques100 says:

    the problem is that peddie cannot be trusted. if you want to believe what he says and fully believe he will give autonomy and get the hockey version of bryan colangelo and give him all the power to do as he sees fit, then go for it. no one is stopping you. but i do have the right to my own opinion and i simply have no trust of faith in the abilities of peddie.

    yes he is part of a duo (fletcher is in fact not involved in the process other than to give input. he isnt the one choosing the next boss, thats peddie and kirke) that is selecting the next president and GM, but therein lies the problem. he still holds some power in the decision making for the hockey team. no he isnt going to be negotiating trades or hiring coaches, but he is going to be part of perhaps the biggest decision by this organization that could set them up or set them back for the next decade or so.

    the fact of the matter is, he should have lost his job along with ferguson. peddie and him having anything to do with hockey matters has been terrible so far. to keep him involved, to keep him in some position of power can only do more harm than good. his attitude, his ego and his inability or unwillingness to completely step aside could hold up the process of hiring, the process of rebuilding, and hold up any top end candidates from even considering the job.

    does he have a right to meddle, sure he does as CEO. but because of that, i share no optimism in seeing the type of damage he could do while still holding some stroke in the organization and the hockey team. in a nutshell, he should be cut off completely, because he isnt, because he'll remain as CEO, because he has a belief and vision of what a CEO is to do and how involved he needs to be, because he still has a hand in deciding the fate of the hockey team with this one big decision on who should be president and GM, it only hurts the team that much more with even the slightest involvment on his part.

    he has been so influencial in making this team so bad, so influencial in keeping dissention and bitterness within the board, having him have such a major impact still today is just not good news and doesnt make me or many others feel all that optimistic that things have changed. he created this mess, he allowed it to fester and he still stays to keep this going.

    i'll happily accept being wrong on this, but history dictates that me and many others will unfortunately be bang on in saying not a thing has changed in MLSE and more of this painful drought will continue.

  22. TML51 says:

    Great article!

    I'd personally like to believe that Fletcher held more of a bargaining chip.  In order to lure him to Toronto, MSLE would have had to make it worth his while.  Why accept a position such as this, with no control over the process? 

    To argue another point, why would a team and its fans be satisfied with mediocrity?  Now, case in point, they still sell out the ACC, and its predecessor, Maple Leaf Gardens with a mediocre effort.  However, from a sheer business standpoint, it does not take a rocket scientist to figure out what a championship team will do for a city.  Look at the '92 and '93 World Series Winners the Toronto Blue Jays.  What those runs did for the City was unreal…increased revenue, money to local business, all the standard Halmarks of a sucessful sports team.

    As for the infighting amongst the board, well, this is usually the classic sign of implosion, and I do agree that there will be some VERY dark times ahead in Leaf land.  The whole MSLE needs to be blown up and started again.

    I honestly think that the Leafs will not be serious contenders for a few years…at least, and that is if they use this opportunity wisely.

    Cliff Fletcher can get the ship pointed in the right direction, but the key factor will be the team that is built around him, the next GM, possibly a new coach, and building a team from the ground up.

    Let's see what happens!

  23. wingedim says:

    You are correct in the fact that Peddie is still the President of the Leafs, and as such does have the right to meddle in the affairs. However, he said that Fletcher would have the same autonomy that all previous GM's had. Which since we know the amount of autonomy that JFJ had means next to none.
    Peddie publicly stated that any changes that JFJ wanted to make had to be board approved. What kind of autonomy is that? The point of the post was even with Fletcher now in charge, things are still the same and that there will not be any real change in the Leafs until such time as Peddie either is removed from hockey operations or finally backs out.

  24. leafy says:

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think you're the only guy on this site who believes that Peddie is a scapegoat.  Are you related to Peddie or something?

  25. wingedim says:

    The article doesn't say that Burke might be coming to Toronto. It does say that given the criteria laid out by Peddie yesterday that the 3 most likely candidates would be Burke, Rutherford and Holland.
    Mackenzie then states in his blog that getting any of the 3 would be a pipedream, however what does it hurt to ask if there is remote possibility that they could accept one of the most challenging (and some would argue coveted) positions in the league? Especially if it meant turning the club around, and bringing the cup to the city.

  26. nordiques100 says:

    I'd like to share your optimism but the thing with fletcher is that was he the only person considered? or the only person willing to do this? i would love to find out if there were other candidates.

    they may indeed have had to sweeten the pot to lure him to toronto. but at the same time, he could be a 72 year old who is nearing the end, who simply could not pass up on this last chance opportunity to do something significant in the NHL. and to give up on the spotlight after being relatively out of it the last decade could have also been enough incentive to do this without the need for any sweetening of the pot.

    and then you have peddie being a part of that process to help take the leafs towards that new direction you speak of. any involvement from him is a scary thought indeed.

    and while i believe the organization wants to win. they simply dont know how. its that simple. they dont have the people in place to know how to do that. nor do they have the people in place to find those people to help them win. they know how to make money. thats it. until they learn or find someone to show them the way, they'll be spinning their wheels for years to come.

  27. leafsrule12345 says:

    its a sad world, but we will get fooled again…mark my words.

  28. leafy says:

    Leafs-Capitals preview

    A new era begins with Alex Ovechkin in town.


  29. the_word says:

    Again, he has the right to interfer with Fletcher if he sees fit too.  Now I have a hard time believing Fletcher would come to Toronto simply to be a puppet to Peddie.  Why fire JFJ and then to keep the status quo?  Doesn't really make sense.

  30. the_word says:

    Awwww Leafy, as usually you find yourself on thin ice.  I mean how many people would concur with your assesment of the Leafs 'powerful' blueline or that the Leafs were simply a goaltender away from being serious contenders last year? 

    I'm no fan of Peddie, I simply have a more moderate view in terms of his influence on the Leafs struggles.  I tire of the uncritical thinking that makes no effort to understand Peddie's role and simply assume that he is incapable of making a good decision.  None of us were at the board meeting or witness the influence of his day to day operations, but everyone considers themselve an expert as they dissect his Peddie's actions.  I think the reality is that we're all dissappointed in what has gone on the last few years and Peddie is the unkown in the equation.  Anyone can fill in the blanks however they see fit to make 'sense' of what has happen and what will come to past.  Exaggerrating Peddie's role is how these conspiracy theories manifest themselves. 

    Its all Peddie's fault?  Ok, enjoy the koolaid.

  31. the_word says:

    First of all, everyone is entitled to their opinion.  Thats a given, so lets throw that platitude out of the discussion.

    Trio, not duo Peddie, Kirke and Fletcher.  Fletcher is involved in the process, let not minimize his role to suit your opinion.  His input is of great value.  Again he is the current president, its his job to be involved, its not simply 'meddling'.

    What is it that you want MLSE to do?  The focus of his job right now is finding a replacement to run the Leafs.  Was he supposed to simply step down and leave a vacuum to fill itself?  It that sort of choatic environment something to be desired? 

    Look, his shortcomings have been well documented, I'm not a fan Peddie.  I take comfort in the fact the Leafs are finally looking to bring in the right GM (not just anyone other than Peddie) moving forward.  Its simply uncritical thinking to assume that because Peddie is involved in the process that the Leafs will hire another failure to take the reigns after Fletcher and continue the cycle of mediocre. 

    Again, Peddie is putting himself in a position to remove himself for controlling the Leafs.  Should this not be a positive? 

    Let's also not minimize Kirke's role in the process.  Long before he's taken this job, he stated the Leafs need an A list GM/president or tadem to run the team.  He has no need to jeopordized his reputation and come on board with MLSE. 

    I could eventually be proven wrong, but I'm not going to call this an ultimate failure today long before anything has happened, simply because Peddie is involved.

  32. mojo19 says:

    Kramer, you and your conspiracy theories. Get back to your pizza idea, where people make their own pie.

  33. habsrock99 says:

    What I do not understand or fail to understand is why would TSN even mention his name and give people a false sense of "hope" if you will, if they know, us as fans know and Burke himself knows that even if he wanted to come to Toronto, he flat out because of his contract.

    Any other names mentioned except for Jim Rutherford and Brian Burke are relatively believable. Burke isn't because he's already said he wouldn't and Rutherford isn't because he's in year 1 of a 5 year contract.

    Like Yzerman, Bowman, Neil Smith and any of those names are somewhat believable but Burke and Rutherford are not. So why try and start a fire in a bucket of water?

  34. ericthered1961 says:

    Yeah Grab me some of that jambalaya from the Soup Nazi Newman

  35. Kramer says:

    Seriously I just might try that pizza idea. and with cucumbers.

  36. Kramer says:

    Actually I prefer mulagatani soup to jambalaya.

  37. leafy says:

    You're equating this year's team to last year's?

    Last year we got 91 points….and that was with Andrew Raycroft in goal for 72 games!!!  Like daaahhhh……

    You simply don't know what you're talking about.

  38. mojo19 says:

    Go for it. My theory is, its not a pizza until it comes out of the oven. But that's just because I'm afraid of knocking up my girl and I don't wanna be a father.

  39. mojo19 says:

    I'm with you Leafy. Imagine we didn't have a goalie who was pulled 4 times in the final 2 month's of the season. Very bad. With NHL quality goaltending the Leafs are a playoff team last year.

    Word, I hear where you're coming from, but Peddie is not a hockey person and the bottom line is he shouldn't have any say in any of the hockey related decisions about this team. Wouldn't you agree with that statement?

  40. mojo19 says:

    I know, Burke has worked so hard in Anaheim, winning a cup and putting together a group led by younger players that could contend for years to come. Why would he all the sudden get out of that situation?

    Rutherford too, he's worked very hard in Carolina having also just won a cup, although there is supposedly some kind of arrangement he has with ownership there where he can leave at any time, so this one is a bit more believable.

    As for Ken Holland, the only way it happens is if the Ilitch family believes Yzerman is ready to take over the GM role in Detroit which they've been grooming him for, for the past 10 years or something. I hope its true because Ken Holland would be a great man for the job.

  41. the_word says:

    Try responding to what I actually wrote. In this instance I wasn't comparing this year's team to last year's team. I ridiculed the notion that the Leafs were a goaltender away from being 'serious contenders' last season despite their 91 points. Let me put this in terms you'll understand, they sucked last year, they suck more this year, but they still sucked last year. Kubina sucked, White sucked worst than he does now, Gill was meh, McCabe produced well offensively but was a huge liability in his own end and Kaberle was the lone brightspot. Raycorft sucked. Their forwards were pretty thin in terms of scoring depth but still overacheived last year. They sure as hell didn't back check though. Leafs may have squeaked into the playoffs and Buffalo would have likely swept them.

    Last off season coming off a 91 point season, with the addition of Blake and Toskala the concensus of the absolute ceiling for this team was 6th spot in the East and even that was being generous. Hardly a serious contender.

    I don't what I'm talking about? Sure kid, next time read my post before type you typical assumptions. Its funny some of us dig a little deeper than post trite along the lines of 'uuummmm, the Leafs were like good last year and not good this year, you know what i mean?' Not to mention having the conviction to articulate our own ideas defend them ourselves.  You'll never see me post thin justifications such as… 'Blue and White agrees with me so I must right, I mean he can name all the prospects from hockeyfutures.com so his opinion is as good as expert opinion'.

    But my personal favorites are the completely passive ad hominum responses to those who disagree with your typically weak positions, such as saying 'you're wrong, you don't know what your talking about and you're not fair minded.'

    I'm not posting this to offend you, I think you need to realize just annoying it can be trying to hockey with you.

  42. the_word says:

    Reading over these candiates it occured to me…. (Now as a disclaimer, I know this is purely overly optimitic wishful thinking in which my Leafs bias is completely ignoring my better judgement)…..

    Let assume for a moment that either Holland, Burke or Rutherford were interested in taking over the Leafs, all three at this moment are potential suitors for Mats Sundin. Could they be interested in over paying the Leafs for Mats knowing they'd be in a better situation in taking over in Toronto. If so, Fletcher is the right person to set up that type of a deal with, Fletcher is friends with many GMs across the league, he has an inside track on where others may be leaning. Could he exploit this for better return? Could he use this to lure a better deal from another GM outside the three mentioned that may be interested in coming to Toronto?

    Wishful thinking.

  43. the_word says:

    I'm not thrilled that Peddie is involved, but as long as the right decision is made, I could care less who makes it.  I'm intrigued with Kirke's involvement.  Between Kirke and Fletcher Peddie has brought in two well connected and likeable personalities for the search.

  44. jpmac says:

    I am sure most of the league would love to have one of those three as their GM, but it isn't going to happen, so why mention it.  Burke for one, can't even opt out, even if he wanted to. 

    Why would people like Burke or Holland want to take over a team in the state that Toronto is n right now when they are prennial contenders.  I know some might say for the challenge, or because it is Toronto, but if I were Ken Holland, I know what I would say. 

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