[Sunday Mashup] A Jumbo Rumour

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San Jose Sharks Captain Joe Thorton (19) skates around during a break in the 3rd period as the Anaheim Ducks take on the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center in San Jose, California on Saturday, November 30, 2013. (Aris Bernales/SFBay)

Yesterday, rumour broke that the Maple Leafs are one of six teams expressing interest Joe Thornton.

It’s a rumour we’ve all fantasized about since Mats Sundin left in 2008: Trading for, as one esteemed AM640 post-game caller once called him, “Horton, the one who plays with Choochoo” [insert Andy Frost’s epic “JOE THORNTON!?” retort here].

Who doesn’t like the general idea of acquiring Joe Thornton, an elite playmaker and big-bodied center who is always near the top of the League in assists? He’s probably got a couple of good years left in him. In my particular fantasy, I’d play him with Clarkson and maybe JvR, creating a great little line that can go to work down low. Thornton is dominant at protecting the puck, making skilled plays in tight spaces and is an elite distributor of the puck. Clarkson is a slow-cycle type of player, cannot create offensive opportunity on his own and could use the service. It all sounds perfect in my head.

And I’d build a nice little package around some combination of Tyler Bozak, James Reimer and/or Cody Franson to do it.

But then there’s reality. He may not even move, first of all, and won’t be if his brother-agent’s reaction to the rumour is any indication. Secondly, he’d need to waive his NMC to come to Toronto (who are not a contender, which is critical) and appears to have no interest in leaving San Jose. Thirdly, Doug Wilson is going to want a package that includes the next 10-15 years of Jake Gardiner (or Nazem Kadri) to make this deal for a 35-year-old Thornton  happen. It’s only the type of deal the Leafs could make if they knew they were a veteran 70pt center away from having a real chance at the Stanley Cup in the next 2 years and had the depth to do it without one of those young two players. Alas, they aren’t and they don’t.

It’s a nice thought, but these aren’t the early-millennium Maple Leafs from the precap era. Unless Wilson wants to entertain my fantasy trade proposal (and Thornton is willing to come here), the slow build, however wobbly it may be, likely continues.

Sunday Links:

  • djamon

    This rumour makes me scared.

  • Bon Scott was a Leaf fan

    djamon
    I honestly can’t see us giving up neither Gardiner nor Kadri for Thornton.  Spare parts??….sure.  Reimer, Gunnar, Franson??  Sure.  Nothing substantial though.  I mean, look at what SJ gave up to acquire him in the first place.  Thornton isn’t worth much these days, even if he does have a couple years left in the tank.  Giving up youth stupid.

  • Xxxxxnew

    Rumour earlier in the day was leafs expressed interest. People here filled in the blanks about who leafs would give up according to their own like and dislikes.

  • Xxxxxnew

    Who are these young coaches with innovative ideas who keep taking their teams to the Stanley Cup finals?

  • Doorman

    Fuck that Noise!!!   NO WAY!!!

  • Zeus_WilliamMapleLeafs

    Xxxxxnew 
    Maurice – yeah we sacked him

  • Zeus_WilliamMapleLeafs

    As far as Im concerned trading Phanny is just stupid. Hes getting 7million because of the workload hes playing. Compare his wage per minute on the ice and hes one of our cheaper and better options.

    Big Joe is a great player but WHY do we need him. I believe in vets coming in to guide youngsters who play in the same possition – a kind of follow my lead teacher. BUT all the deals have Kadri going in the opposite direction and unless Holland is billed as the new 1st line center to be Thornton is just an expensive quick fix.
    Id rather throw 8 million on a young Stastny now entering his prime than the same money on a mid 30’s player, on the decline and will never put up numbers like he does with SJ as he will be playing under pressure with bit parts and under achievers.
    My shopping list in regards centers would be Stastny and throw money at it. Also trade for Zibanejad. Resign Bolland and put Kadri on the wing.
    With centers 1C.Stastny 2/3C Bozak 2/3C Bolland and 4C Holland we will still have Kadri 2RW and Zibanejad 3RW in reserve. So it gives us a few more years to see if Kadri will actually make a decent centerman, see how Zibanejad progresses, gives time for Holland and keeps our core together should something go terribly wrong whilst adding a recognised 1st liner and help for Kessel.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Zero chance we are trading young talent for an aging star.  ZERO. 

    However, to have a 1st line C to play with Kessel sure would be fun.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    However the diehard fans around here (not like HH or Belfour) better get ready and used to the idea that big changes are coming.
    Timmy L and Shanny will FORCE Nonis off his passive ass in order to make some splashes in the pool this summer.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Dewy Hogturd (aka, ~Keon) Hey Dewy, how can you not appreciate his talent?  Big, tough,point producing, and fun loving guy.

    Just like you.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Dewy Hogturd (aka, ~Keon) TheCanucksnaphook Too cranky this morning !!  

    He just hasnt won the Cup.  I think he is a vastly underrated talent, but the pressure in TO would crush him.

  • Zep2

    Thornton played injured for the Bruins in a playoff loss against the Bruins and Bruins fans and management ate him alive
    Similarly, Lindros rushed himself back into playoffs and suffered a career ending hit. His team mates,desjardins Primeau questioned his toughness and Bobby Clarke questioned his manhood

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Zep2 Thornton isnt coming to Toronto, no matter how much we all want to dream.

    (id prefer younger,  and more addicted to limelight)

  • ByebyeBolland

    We need TyBo mojo. I say NoJoe. I’m not sure I’d even trade Bozak straight up for NoShow Joe.

  • Burtonboy

    If SJ wants to rif themselves of Thorton and Marleau so badly they might have to use their compliance buyouts . I don’t see either of these guys as the type to waive those NTC. You reap what you sow when you sign 34 yr old players  to these type of contracts.

  • Zep2

    That the trade I would make? SJ sheds some salAry and get a guy to play 3c
    We get a short term solution at 1C

  • KurtWhite

    I offer a 2nd round pick and bollands rights

  • sniperstar

    Imagine if he scored 4 goals in Toronto.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    KurtWhite For their trainer in San Jose?

  • Leafs2 Isles1

    I think that Thorton would be a good fit in Toronto.

    Leadership, experience and hockey smarts are all things the Leafs need.

    He would give Holland and Gauthier a chance to develop. 

    I don’t buy the knock on him that he isn’t elite because he hasn’t won the Stanley Cup. Neither did Sundin. Their stats are almost identical.

    Of course, it does come down to asking price and whether he wants to be here or not. The reality of the situation is, there is more talk to this move than anything else.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Leafs2 Isles1 I think they are almost the same age too….

  • ByebyeBolland

    The Allison Lindros nightmares still haunt me. If Boston can’t sign Iginla I’d be ok with going after him hard with a 1 year deal.

  • ByebyeBolland

    Sundin was a better skater than Thornton. It’s hard to know how Joe will fit in in years 2 and 3. The better skaters like Selanne, St. Louis and Iginla seem to be able to stay competitive as they age.

  • Zep2

    You can add SIttler, Lindros, Jean Ratelle, to that list

  • Zep2

    Alec nailed it regarding the asking price. We can’t five up 10-15 years of Gardiner for JJ

  • wendelsway1

    Good Morning Gents……..Don’t think there is a hope in hell that Thornton would waive for TO…..and even if he would, spare parts are one thing, but no way I’m including our best young players for aging vets…..been there, done that….we need somebody younger, if we are parting with a Kadri or Gardiner….and I’d still have to think long and hard before including either or these players in a trade…..period.

  • peterbleafs

    I have zero interest in Joe Thornton here, he is a loser who piles up points during a season and does nothing in the playoffs.  Screw that deal.  Guy is also a local loser in St. Thomas where he grew up, a huge dickhead.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    wendelsway1 The voice of reason as per usual.

  • Tim Horton

    peterbleafs At least hed get us to the playoffs.

  • Leafs2 Isles1

    peterbleafs He’s got 100 pts in 132 games. That’s 0.76 pts per game in the playoffs, where the checking is closer.

  • dlb Reggie

    no Joe

  • Great Dane

    wendelsway1  Sharks can have a free choice of Bozak, Clarkson, Gleason and Franson.

  • dlb Reggie

    Great Dane
    why?

  • Zep2

    Maybe the LEafs should stand pat, let Bolland walk, and then try to get Mike Richards after LA buys him out

  • wendelsway1

    TheCanucksnaphook wendelsway1 Just how many times do we have to hear that we are now in the development business and the days of trading our best young talent for aging vets is over, until we believe it?

  • dlb Reggie

    Zep2 
    or sign both and make smart decisions with others

  • Great Dane

    dlb Reggie Mainly addition by subtraction. Jumbo has a shorter contract than Clarkson and Bozak and the same as Gleason. He is still a better center than anything we have on the roster even at 35

  • dlb Reggie

    Great Dane
    what we’d be aiming for with Joe on the roster?  the only thing he gives us is enough centres under contract to start the season.
    if Bozak hasn’t shown you what he’s worth to a team by now he never will i guess.
    i’m not done with some of the others so soon.  not until a better opportunity than this persents itself

  • Great Dane

    CanuckUKinToronto Franson and a 4th round is top dollars for Thornton that I would pay.  I would prefer to send them Bozak or clarkson

  • Zep2

    I just get the feeling that Bolland thinks he has the Leafs bent over.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    CanuckUKinToronto DO NOT get rid of Percy or Gauthier.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    Zep2 Like Dom Moore tried to pull several years ago?

    Fuck off….and be gone.

  • dlb Reggie

    CanuckUKinToronto 
    Thornton’s talent can be whatever it is.  i just don’t want him to be one of the new leaders on a young team.  he’s a douche bag.  i’d much prefer to see “geeky” guys like Bozak and Kessel lead the show so Rielly and other youngsters can become the heart and soul of the team.  or Bolland and Clarkson types, who people can rag on all they want, but they’re the kinds of people i want on my side, showing how to be a pro.
    just keep Joe away from us.  find others.

  • Zep2

    Exactly

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    wendelsway1 TheCanucksnaphook Just gota be very careful with this fool Timmy L in charge.

  • dlb Reggie

    CanuckUKinToronto
    who wouldn’t want Bozak?  other than some Leafs fans?

  • dlb Reggie

    CanuckUKinToronto
    instead, let’s just swap our 2nd, 3rd and 4th lines with theirs
    we’d be much better off.

  • wendelsway1

    TheCanucksnaphook wendelsway1 Timmy or Shanny need to toss us a bone with some sort of Leafs news…..we are getting as bad as the media when left to our own devices….lol  :)

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    It could sting a little bit, but I believe the Leafs are trolling in a Hurricane to land Eric Staal.

  • TheCanucksnaphook

    wendelsway1 TheCanucksnaphook Maybe even worse than Mirtle with an atomic wedgie after having to “endure” a series of Leafs wins.