Home Leafs News Entry Draft Patience is the Word

Patience is the Word

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It may seem uncharacteristic of  Brian Burke, historically a headline maker at the Entry Draft, to sit essentially idle on the hockey world’s biggest stage. Important to remember is that the big man can be patient when he needs to be. The Anaheim and Calgary deals of last February, when Burke waited until certain pressure points reached a head, were both examples of Burke’s willingness to sit back until the time was right to pull the trigger – despite all the temptations to hit the panic button as his team sat in the Eastern Conference basement with no first round pick to look forward to.

There is no doubt Burke has been driving a hard bargain for Kaberle. This has to have many general managers looking to some prospective names in the UFA market for alternatives that don’t cost assets up front. Sergei Gonchar, Pavel Kubina, Paul Martin, Derek Morris, Toni Lydman, Joe Corvo, Adrian Aucoin, Shaonne Morrisonn, Dan Hamhuis (who looks like he won’t be coming to terms with the Flyers) and Carlo Colaiacovo are all pending UFAs that could be considered less pricey substitutes. Come mid-July, with many of these names off the board,  Burke might just cash in on another GMs desperation.

A few other notes:

  • It is know Brian Burke’s preferable return for Tomas Kaberle is a young, NHL-ready top six forward with size. Burke is also said to be interested in acquiring some secondary toughness and scoring up front in the form of a checking liner with offensive upside. There are hopes that Caputi will develop into that niche, however it is believed the organization doesn’t think he’s ready yet to fill that need which Burke wants to address for this season. Ryan Malone is one name that appeals to Burke here, although there certainly has to be trepidations about the accompanying contract which pays the 6’4 winger $4.5 million until 2014-15. Andrew Ladd fits the description as well, and was a rumoured target according to the Globe and Mail’s Eric Duhatschek.
  • Marc Savard is said to be willing to waive his no-trade clause to go to Toronto, Ottawa or Detroit at this point. According to sources the Leafs have only mild interest in Savard and would only consider him as a part of a package involving long-time assets of interest Joe Colborne or Blake Wheeler. The Leafs for their part would then have to add more beyond Kaberle to get that in motion. It seems likely to me that with the three teams Savard has named as desirable destinations (Detroit, Ottawa, Toronto) not having strong interest in the centre, Peter Chiarelli will wait until July 1 when his no-movement clause becomes limited according to Nick Kypreos.

We will be doing a cover-it-live tonight starting around 6:45 p.m. ET.