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Brian Burke.

Surprise, eh?

Everyone knew it would be coming for about a week now, and now what to expect? I was never a fan of Brian Burke. I think his draft record stinks, I hate that he supposedly does not like Europeans, and I think he doesn’t know how to manage the cap. But that’s just my worthless opinion

A look at his draft record could tell us exactly what we need to know, and what to look forward as when we head closer to the draft. He has drafted 17 players from the Canadian systems during his time in Anaheim. He has drafted 8 players from the American system. He has drafted just FOUR players from oversees. All his European selections were made in the 4th, 5th, and 6th round...Of a total of 29 players.

In Vancouver he drafted 39 players from Canadian systems. He drafted 10 Americans, and 17 players from Europe. Among 66 players, that is.

Anaheim/ Vancouver

Europeans: 14%/ 25%
Canadians: 58%/ 60%
Americans: 28%/ 15%

I know these numbers rely heavily on who is available each year, what each team’s specific needs are, how good his scouts are, resources available to him, and etc. but I think I know what we can expect from Burke: A draft where we come out with a lot of Canadians kids. What I found interesting was that he drafted a decent amount of Europeans in Vancouver, but did not in Anaheim.

His draft record isn’t too impressive, but he is responsible for players like: Kesler, R.J. Umberger, the Great Federov (Fedor Federov that is), Kevin Bieksa (in the 5th round), the Sedins, Jarkko Ruutu, Bryan Allen, and Matt Cooke. That's about it. The work he’s done in Anaheim is still too early to evaluate but he has by no means left the team with an empty cupboard.

Here is something I think will excite leafs fans (well those of us who want to see a nice draft, with a lot of depth picks ). At the 2008 entry draft he had his own 1st round pick, three 2nd round picks, three 3rd round picks, a 4th, a 5th, and a 7th. (I believe he traded that 6th round pick for J.S. Aubin...lol remember him?). In 07 he didn’t have a 6th or a 7th pick, but he did have four 4th round picks.

So I’m kinda of excited to see what Burke will bring. One thing I do know is if Burke wants something he will go out and get it. I like how aggressive he is. If he wants to be in the top 5, I’m sure he’ll find his way up there. He did get the Sedins (although it was a horrible draft) with the 2nd and 3rd overall pick. He did make a nice move to land an elite defender(Pronger I mean, which was a good trade). He is bringing former Nucks manager Dave Nonis with him who I think is good...he is someone Burke will listen too.

I think Leafs fans need to stop already criticizing him and saying, “Burke is garbage,” and wait and see what he will do. I was/and still am sceptical of his ability to lead us to the Holy Grail. Who knows when when/if we’ll get there, what I DO KNOW is that we are in for many years of hilarious sarcastic comments from Wilson and Burke...which is a step up from JFJ’s comments that were verbatim(I guess Peddie should have switched up the scripts lol).
Filed Under:   Burke   Leafs   Vancouver   Anaheim   tml35  
November 29, 2008 5:22 PM ET | Delete
Yes, there is definitely exiting times to be had by Leaf fans in the near future.
November 29, 2008 8:29 PM ET | Delete
Yeah, I can't wait his comments this morning's press conference were golden. Like the one about his players doing community service, and it not being optional..
November 30, 2008 12:14 PM ET | Delete
I'm pretty sure Burke drafted Chris Pronger back in Hartford too... and I personally wouldn't call him a draft day turkey. He makes moves, wheels and deals, and gets the job done. I'm thinking he's going to sell our assets on the blue line (Kubina, Kaberlie) for almost nhl ready prospects and picks and go for some blue chip defensive prospects like Hedman at the draft.
November 30, 2008 1:15 PM ET | Delete
"I think Leafs fans need to stop already criticizing him and saying, Burke is garbage" Isn't that what you just did in your first paragraph?? Maybe you should follow your own advice!!
November 30, 2008 2:08 PM ET | Delete
Well, no. What I'm saying is having your own opinion on a person is one thing(he's definitely made mistakes in the past...which is what I pointed out... his mistakes) BUT coming out and saying this is a horrible signing is another. A lot of Leafs fans are criticizing MLSE for going out and getting him, feeling he isn't the man for the job. The purpose of the blog was to point out that maybe he is what we need, with the all the resources he has in Toronto, maybe he improves his drafting. Me saying that he hasn't drafted well in the past, and he cap-locks his teams, is not to try and knock him, it is fact. I pointed out that he is in a different situation in Toronto, and I expect him to improve on those things, and that I was excited to see what he would bring. At first I was never a fan of Burke, but I am beginning to turn into one.If you agree that we should wait and give Burke a chance before complaining about him...then we are in the same boat my friend :)
November 30, 2008 10:40 PM ET | Delete
yea... he probbably didnt read past the 1st para...
December 1, 2008 3:38 PM ET | Delete
Oh, and ndk you were right about Pronger too, I accidentally overlooked the short year that he had with Hartford. But there he draft Pronger, Marek Malik, Nolan Pratt, and Manny Legace(in the 8th round) all in the same year...I'd really like to see how he does in Toronto with all the resources he'd have access too. I'd definately like to see Kaberle or Kubina moved, maybe both...Kaberle has a lot of value..
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