I think without a doubt now everyone knows that the days of JFJ and Paul Maurice are slowly coming to an end in Leaf Land. Let’s just say that JFJ and the Upper Management of MLSE have left some terrible scars on the future of the Leafs organization. The NTC's, highly over inflated salaries, and underachieving talent that has poisoned the once mighty Maple Leaf franchise has finally boiled over in Toronto. The amount of talent that has been thrown away for veterans in the past 10 years is enough to make any Leaf fan sick to their stomach. I know that Paul Maurice has had an inferior bench to deal with since taking over from Pat Quin, but if you know that your system is not going to work with the talent in your room you have to coach to win. If that means playing the trap and taking a more defensive approach so be it. When I see a coach consistently play a run and gun style of hockey knowing that his defense and Goaltending are the weakest points on the team it makes me wonder about his competence. You have to play the cards you are dealt you can only Bluff pocket aces for so long before you get burnt. It’s time for this team to get some structure and play to win. That means fixing the turmoil in front office in MLSE, taking an approach similar to what they did with their basketball team, by finding the best man for the job and letting him do his job. I honestly think this should not be rushed. I think they need to look deep into the hockey world finding the best man for the job. I really believe that Brian Kilrea would be a great coach if they could somehow lure him from the Ottawa 67’s. I know this would be a long shot but who ever would have thought that Brian Sutter would have left the Red Dear Rebels for the NHL. Anything is possible. Steve Tambalini is a highly touted GM in the making. It may be worth a shot to see if Vancouver would part with him. I guess only time will tell in Leaf Land.
If the Leafs decide to go with a re-building phase then yeah Kilrea would be great, very successful with kids! I would like to see the new GM come with a little more hands on experience though, not to say that Tambelini isn't going to be good one day, but this Toronto team is a mess and I would hate to see someone without hands on experience have to try and sort through it.
I heard on TSN that Bob Nicholson is someone they are looking at as GM to mentor Messier. I think that sounds like a good candidate he knows the game and he really knows young talent so come draft time he would be a real asset.