Maple Leafs President and General Manager appeared on NHL Live yesterday to discuss a number of topics, including the Vancouver Canucks post season success, Colin Campbell stepping down as head of NHL discipline, and the Leafs` game plan heading into the off season. Here are some of the highlights from the interview:
- When asked about the Sedin twins, Burke elaborated on how difficult it was to secure the second and third overall picks in the 1998 Draft in order to take the twins. He spoke highly of the Sedins’ character, calling them ‘good kids who deserve all of the accolades they have gotten’.
- Burke praised Colin Campbell for his reign as the head of discipline for the NHL and thinks Brendan Shanahan is an excellent replacement who is cut-out for the position. He also mentioned that Campbell will be able to focus on growing the game now that he is primarily in charge of hockey operations.
- With regards to the Leafs, Burke emphasized that his players do not have to apologize for years of futility and are only accountable for their time in Toronto. He views the second half of the season as a true indication of how this team will play in the fall. More specifically, Burke emphasized the ‘size, speed and toughness of his current group’.
- Looking towards free agency, Burke gave the impression that he would look to improve his team through free agency, namely upgrading the Leafs down the middle. Although it has been speculated that the Leafs are interested in acquiring exclusive negotiating rights for Brad Richards prior to July 1st, Burke was unfamiliar with the NHL’s stance on swapping a player’s rights and enforced that the Leafs are not exploring that option.
- As expected, the blue and white will be active on the draft floor and in free agency in hopes of acquiring a front line centre and finding a veteran goaltender to back up James Reimer.
Click here to listen to the full interview on NHL.com.
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