Sunday, January 13, 2008

It's Mess, I Confess

What do you even say after a night like tonight? You have Toronto, a team that has in the past couple of weeks joined any conversation on the topic of NHL's worst team, playing in San Jose, San Jose a good, well built hockey team if there ever was one but a team that struggles at home for whatever reasons. The Leafs who had lost their last four, took a two nothing lead into the third period and for those first two periods they looked fine, like a team that knew what it was doing, a team with confidence and muscle and everything else you're supposed to have to win in this league.

But but but, any savvy hockey fan who has followed the Leafs season to this point could have figured out what was coming.

Third period meltdown.

Oh yes, in what I think has become the Leafs trademark move this season, they did just enough in the third period to lose a game they had spent forty minutes winning. Quel surprise and etc.

But these loses are all for a higher purpose now. Change is coming, and I know I said that earlier this season and than nothing happened but you have to think that things have progressed to the point where not even Richard (Pettie) Peddie can sit back and tell us this is not the time for hasty decisions. Richard Peddie's job is safe, I think, I mean I don't think I've ever heard any of his bosses complain about him and the man does wonders for their investment returns so the blame is going to fall to John Ferguson Junior. I would be surprised now, following these three consecutive California loses if something did not go down. How can it not?

Whatever happens though, I can't even trust whether it will be a step in a positive direction, or just JFJ redux. I mean we are trusting Peddie, the same man who hired Fergie to replace him. What's giving me hope are Peddie's comments earlier this season when he told us that hiring a rookie GM like Fergs had been a mistake (oh you don't say) and the very, very positive example set by the Raptors' recent reconstruction led by GM/messiah Brian Colangelo, which leads us to believe that MLSE is not as completely useless as they seems. If they could get it right with the basketball side, and remember how that half of the operation used to make the Leafs divine in comparison, why can't they repeat it with the hockey half?

Of course, in order to fix this mess you'd need to bring someone in and then give him complete control of the hockey business, like Colangelo secured for himself with the Raps, because nobody worth hiring would put up with a board of governors who fancy themself hockey experts. So right there you have a problem because is this a hockey organization that is willing to take it's chefs out of the kitchen? Yeah I don't know. I want to be optimistic, but this is MLSE we are talking about and if there is anyone capable of screwing this up, it's going to be the clowns running this franchise.


Endnote - Tomas Kaberle is the only Leaf on the Eastern All Star team, which makes Mats Sundin an obvious snub, but he says he'd rather take the rest anyway so I guess problem averted? Or maybe it's just Mats being Mats, not wanting to cause a fuss. We could probably debate whether Toronto even deserves a player on the All Star team, but then, getting worked up about All Star games is just silly. Do people still watch them? I don't know.

1 comment:

walkinvisible said...

the board of governers IS the problem (and, even though i really detest JFJ, i realize now that this is the reason he only deserves half of the blame).

the other thing i see happening is, instead of taking even baby steps forward, the leafs organization continues to take steps backwards. not everybody is a good idea a second time around. gilmour is a prime example of this, and i might suggest cliff fletcher is not in any way the answer to the problems (though i love the guy ---he won me a cup in my lifetime)....

i don't know what the answer is, but hell. put your seatbelt on, dude, it's gonna be a bumpy ride....