Four roster players of name value plus three prospects and a first round pick changed hands in a rare modern day multi-player NHL blockbuster.

Buffalo may well end up with the two best players in the deal if Bogosian and Kane can stay healthy and progress, with the convenience of Kane not being able to hurt their draft position at all for the rest of the season. For Winnipeg, Tyler Myers has flashed a lot of upside in his mixed career to date, plus there’s futures heading Winnipeg’s way, and for the stretch run they add a veteran scorer in Drew Stafford in the place of a malcontented, injured player who was going to play no part in the rest of their season. Interesting deal that seems to have sound logic behind it for both sides, with no clear winner right away.

In Leafs news, a pretty major story in The Globe and Mail this morning courtesy of Cathal Kelly, with the brass tax being that Shanahan wanted a full-scale teardown the summer after arriving but needed to persuade ownership. The key passage:

[quote_box_center]Mr. Shanahan and his lieutenants have now finally received a broad mandate from ownership to scorch as much earth as they see fit in order to return the Leafs to contention, according to two sources familiar with that meeting. It will mean a new philosophy on building slowly through the draft and long-term projects, rather than quick fixes via trades for established players. It will mean at least three more years of pain for fans, and as many as five.[/quote_box_center]

Thursday Links:

  • Cathal Kelly: Kelly: Shanahan’s scorched-earth Leafs plan wins MLSE support (Globe and Mail)
    These informal meetings had been ongoing since the start of the National Hockey League calendar. New Leafs president Brendan Shanahan was hired with a mandate to remake the team. From very early on, he’d realized that if the club aspired to be a Stanley Cup contender, it required a major overhaul. But he needed the evidence of the season to persuade his employers fully. After the Leafs’ recent slide out of contention, the club’s given him that.
  • Jonathan Willis: Trading for Kane was a smart move (
    The first important thing to note with Kane is that, unlike virtually every other offensive player in the NHL, he doesn’t make his living on the power play. To date in his NHL career, Kane has never cracked 10 power-play points in a season, despite having scored 23 power-play goals in just 61 games in his final season of junior. It’s not a matter of him not getting power-play time either; it’s just that prior to this season he hasn’t been a dynamic scorer with the man advantage.
  • Elliotte Friedman: Why the fiercely independent Kane must change his ways (
    “Jeff Carter is a talented guy who needed direction, to be shown the way,” one scout said. “Now he’s a different player on and off the ice, a real leader on that team. You wouldn’t have said that previously. I see real similarities between those guys.”
  • Bruce Arthur: Leafs finally come down from false hope (Toronto Star)
    But Clarkson is the example of the thinking that dragged the Leafs down into this ditch. In the last three years — and since the first lockout, really — the Leafs have always held onto some measure of hope that they could turn this thing around. They could add some pieces, makes some trades, accelerate the process, make the playoffs. I once asked Brian Burke why he wasn’t patient with his rebuild. He said maybe it was his age, and maybe it was because he didn’t have to wait in Anaheim. That’s why he traded for Kessel, as young as Kessel was.
  • Allan Muir: Benching Phil Kessel makes sense for struggling Leafs (Sports Illustrated)
    The game was raw meat for Kessel’s critics, a showcase for all of his worst attributes. In the 12:57 he played—a new low since he came to the Leafs in a September 2009 trade with the Bruins—he was scarcely more than an empty sweater, satisfied with floating around the perimeter of plays rather than being actively involved in them.
  • Michael Traikos: Peter Horachek using his only weapon — ice time, to send a message to Phil Kessel (National Post)
    “I mean, you never want to see everybody come right off,” Horachek said after Kessel botled for the dressing room as practice ended. “You want to see them working on their trade. I wasn’t very happy with him last night. I didn’t spend a lot of time today having meetings and video. I didn’t show him anything. I just told him we had to get back to work.”
  • Jonas Siegel: Leaf culture has changed post-Carlyle; losing continues (
    Under Carlyle, errors could be harped on, grilled over and punished with a selected seat on the bench. All of which led to a culture of tension, a culture where emphasis tended toward not making the wrong play as opposed to making the right one.


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