Home HockeyBuzz Register Login
"You heard it someplace, not here."
OK, first of all, get a grip on yourself if you are a Leaf fan looking for big changes. There are a couple of things that may work against that before the deadline.
Mainly, Brian Burke just lost his son and deserves some family time this week to get his bearings. He's earned a break after the last two deals, and given the circumstances of the last week, he's likely putting a lot of faith in Dave Nonis and Cliff Fletcher. There is a slight chance that Burke as a GM who works hard to build a reputation as being fair to him players may simply offer two of his biggest assets - Ponikarovski and Kaberle a chance to re-sign over the Olympic break. That would have two very positive results for Toronto, as any renewal offered right now to extend their stay in Toronto will either be
(1) terms favorable to the Leafs for the long-term, (getting these guys cheaper than other teams might have to pay)
(2) pay increases for a longer term that will significantly boost the asking price for either.

Consider that a rental like Kovalchuk was shockingly less than many expected.
These guys are a tier below that, maybe two tiers - despite being consistent and talented offensive performers. Both are great team guys. Model citizens, and low stress additions that would make any coaches job easier. Signing both to extensions could really allow Burke to ask for a solid first round pick as a starting point if these quality players have long-term affordable contract. From the player's perspective, it means they have a business reason, along with all the personal reasons to have Burke keep them in the fold.

So where does that leave the Leafs? Who will they move?
I would expect that after the Olympics, if there is no extension signed, that you will see Poni shopped, with the hope that he'll be back as a free agent.
Kaberle will likely be safe until the draft, and I suspect that Burke will tell him that should a team offer him some undisclosed minimum, he will ask him to waive the NT clause.

Stempniak is as good as gone, it is only a matter of some higher ranked UFAs being moved first or a team getting both him and another better player. I keep expecting to hear of Poni and Stempniak going for a high pick or possibly to a team with a blue-chip prospect, but in need of some immediate, affordable second line help now on a play-off run. Tampa comes to mind, so does Boston, possibly LA, Philly, Rangers, Minny or Anaheim.

One intriguing possibility is St. Louis, who may be willing to part with a high potential guy like Berglund if they think they can get better fast, it might also take tossing in a prospect, but could get the Leafs a guy with big skill for next year. Another option, may be Brad Boyes who apparently may be available for the right package.

Tampa is supposedly considering a move of Malone. Brian Burke's kind of guy, but not a center...so who knows?
Another possibility if Kaberle is on the table is Vancouver and Cody Hodgson.
A long-time top prospect just recovered from back problems. His value and development might have slipped just enough to make him available for some quality assets like Kaberle and a lesser pick. Just sayin'.

Anyway, expect a quiet Olympic break, but perhaps one more big Leaf deal this season.
February 11, 2010 1:21 AM ET | Delete
Hopefully trade with the Bruins anytime soon. Man did they rip them off. Raycroft for Rask LOL. Highway Robbery! Kessel for 2 lottery picks and a 2nd rounder that is almost a first? Seriously that wouldn't pass in my fantasy league. LOL. Your screwed almost as bad as the Oilers.
February 11, 2010 5:29 AM ET | Delete
why would they sign these guys then trade them talk about not being fair to the players!take a home town discount then get traded right away OUCH...not gonna happenand ya poni stemp package count work if we take some salary back like to boston for ryder and joe colborn but then we are stuck with ryder for next year and thats like all our money left to sign someone else
February 11, 2010 5:33 AM ET | Delete
i would like to see poni and XLB to the pens for eaton and tangradi....tangradi is exactly what the leafs need down the middle and he was a burke draft pick
February 11, 2010 12:40 PM ET | Delete
If you think that St. Louis would cough up Berglund you either have amazing insight, or none at all because from where I'm sitting, I just can't see it happening. St. Louis has been extremely patient and is one of the few teams that looks to be a dedicated seller at the deadline, can't picture them giving up on a building block for immediate gains.
February 11, 2010 12:59 PM ET | Delete
February 11, 2010 2:34 PM ET | Delete
Am I the only person not surprised for "how little" Kovie went for?
February 11, 2010 10:23 PM ET | Delete
I kind of assumed he wouldn't get a king's ransom considering that D.W. released the rejected offers to the public. Knowing what Ilya had already rejected definitely made him a rental only option in my books and lowered what I'd be willing to trade as the G.M. from any NHL team.
February 11, 2010 10:28 PM ET | Delete
Interesting that the Habs gave up a second rounder in 2011 for Dom Moore. The 2011 draft is supposedly expected to be one of the weaker ones in the last 10 years. The Habs are hoping that they are a top team with a poor pick that year, while the Panthers mysteriously drop a modest salary. Montreal with this one move, manages to both get a reliable 2 way player cheap, and double the average height of their forwards since the departure of George Laraque. (grin).
February 12, 2010 10:57 AM ET | Delete
I think the deal for Dom Moore, just increased the value of Stempniak to a second rounder. He's not as good defensively but can play the point on the powerplay, and is better offensivley, 29 points to Moore's 19.I think the Leafs should continue the NCAA route this spring and find some more guys that have developed late and can maybe make the jump to the big club.
Leave a Comment
You must be logged in to leave a comment.

Blog Archive