The Wayward Wind

This is Borje Salming in what can only be described as an unusual uniform (I think it’s Brynas). He is one of many outstanding hockey players who spent many years in Toronto vying for the Stanley whilst management had one oar in the water and another up their collective ass.

Today the Toronto Maple Leafs fired Paul Maurice. All kinds of speculation came out of the center of the universe with regard to the new GM being named (no smoke came from the chimney at the Vatican so I wasn’t fooled) today but it didn’t happen.

Some pretty smart people were speculating before and after the addled Fletcher press conference today about the timing of this move, but I’d like to add one more theory that wasn’t written today.

The Toronto Maple Leafs management group decided it was time for Toronto to be in the news today. So great is their arrogance that the Leafs believe too long from the spotlight for the anchor franchise of the NHL isn’t good for the team, the fans, the league, the nation or even planet earth.

Seriously.

There’s really no other reason to fire Paul Maurice today. They could have done it when all the other losing teams did after the regular season or they could have waited until the new GM is named. However, the Leafs annually represent the James Brown of off-seasons (remember his death on stage OH WAIT he’s fine act?), giving their fans something to talk about every few weeks as the mighty, mighty brain trust concocts a new recipe for success.

Another rumor today has Dave Nonis accepting the job and keeping the seat warm while Anaheim (those dirty buggers) force Brian Burke to honor the contract he signed (probably at gunpoint, there’s guns everywhere in the USA) in good faith with the Ducks ownership group.

I get the feeling the Leafs view their work the way George Steinbrenner went about driving baseball crazy each winter. Note to Leafs managements: there’s a slight difference. The Yankees won a few. The Toronto Maple Leafs continue to be all hat and no cattle. If you made this stuff up nobody would believe you. They’d move it from the fiction section to the fantasy section.

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39 Responses to "The Wayward Wind"

  1. Dennis says:

    All hat and no cattle?

    Is this anything like not having won a Cup in 18 seasons and then having your GM saying he doesn’t see a lot of holes?

    I wonder if there’s an LT in the Leaves fan circle and what he’d say about the Oilers and Kevin Lowe:)

  2. Pat H says:

    Funny comment, Dennis. Please let me know if you find such a beast.

    Love this line, LT: “no smoke came from the chimney at the Vatican so I wasn’t fooled”

  3. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: I think that’s you. :-)

  4. Dennis says:

    LT: No, I’m just a guy who’s a fan outside the city who hasn’t attended the breakfasts:)

  5. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: lol. You’d have loved those breakfasts, it was impossible to find straight coffee.

  6. Ducey says:

    “I wonder if there’s an LT in the Leaves fan circle and what he’d say about the Oilers and Kevin Lowe:)”

    Good Luck. By definition Leaves fans find it impossible to pay attention to what other teams are doing. The other teams are just quasi-farm teams desperately holding onto their players who’d love to join Toronto.

    Anyone else find it strange that the “interim” GM isn’t supposed to replace himself with the world’s best GM until the fall – after the tear down and draft will all be completed?

  7. rickibear says:

    Dennis: I have had this belief of your prersona in my head for the last year but this last set of comments has caused me to come to the full conclusion that it is correct. You are Mel Gibson’s character from the movie Conspiracy Theory. The evil Dr. Jonas being played by Kevin Lowe in your life.

  8. Ender says:

    Is it just me that says “Leafs?” I keep seeing people write Leaves.

  9. Ender says:

    Or is that a falmes-type thing?

  10. Lowetide says:

    Okay, was there in fact a Jennifer here or did one of you assclowns sign in as your wife again?

    Jesus.

  11. Ender says:

    Okay, was there in fact a Jennifer here or did one of you assclowns sign in as your wife again?

    Jesus.

    My bad. Didn’t realize she had signed into gmail on my computer. (and not wife for another week and a half)

  12. Oilman says:

    Is this anything like not having won a Cup in 18 seasons and then having your GM saying he doesn’t see a lot of holes?

    Wasn’t that Pendergrast that said that? and we did “win a pennant” – something the Leafs haven’t done in over 40 years – so their hat is bigger:o)

  13. Coach pb9617 says:

    All hat and no cattle?

    Is this anything like not having won a Cup in 18 seasons and then having your GM saying he doesn’t see a lot of holes?

    I wonder if there’s an LT in the Leaves fan circle and what he’d say about the Oilers and Kevin Lowe:)

    I believe a wonderful hockey blogger recently talked about Pennants mattering nearly as much as cups…

  14. danny says:

    dennis, how does holes pertaining to this roster have anything to do with 18 years of no cups? What the heck was Sutter thinking when he resigned all those players that haven’t won a cup in 20 years?

    Its like youre Matheson and LT bought the Oilers the day Lowe traded 44 ;)

  15. Lowetide says:

    So, let’s review. This blog has been around forever and so far we’ve had maybe 12 women drop in here. Louise, the Hot Oil women and 7 guys who forget to sign in under their own name?

    That’s IT! Next week: recipes. :-)

  16. Jonathan says:

    So, let’s review. This blog has been around forever and so far we’ve had maybe 12 women drop in here. Louise, the Hot Oil women and 7 guys who forget to sign in under their own name?

    Sometimes my wife reads over my shoulder while she’s trying to get me to do something else ;)

  17. Bruce says:

    Come back Loxy. All is forgiven.

  18. Alice says:

    Hey, I’m interested in these Hot Oil Women – whatever they are. Anyone who rides under a flag like that has my blessing and probably undivided attention.

    Radio today says Maurice pulled the cord. Didn’t want to hang around like Dubya waiting on his walking papers.

  19. Alice says:

    Sorry LT, about not being one of the lady-count. Only benefit my wife sees in this exercise is I’m not trolling ebay for guitar stuff. You’re saving us money :-)

  20. heed says:

    So, let’s review. This blog has been around forever and so far we’ve had maybe 12 women drop in here. Louise, the Hot Oil women and 7 guys who forget to sign in under their own name?

    That’s IT! Next week: recipes. :-)

    my wife is a regular reader of your blog. she just doesn’t post. her and i probably watched 70 of the oilers games together this year.

  21. melm.. says:

    Does it count that I’m female, and lurk but never post?

  22. Lord Bob says:

    Does it count that I have manboobs?

  23. Jonathan says:

    I really don’t understand this obsession the Toronto media has with Brian Burke. He is a good GM, yes, but deosn’t he have a job with a Stanley Cup-winning team?

    Than the Leafs go out and request permission to talk to Doug Wilson, which the Sharks quite correctly refuse. Rutherford and Riseborough are mentioned as other candidates. What happened to hiring guys not presently serving as NHL GMs?

    Between Dave Nonis, Doug Armstrong, Bobby Clarke, Neil Smith and the rest there are plenty of ex-GM types who might fit in well. Oil Country Ontario had a nice post recommending Clarke.

    Aside from those guys, how many GM-type guys are there out there in an assistant role, or minor-league role, or junior role, who might fit?

    Finally, the media keep talking about Nonis serving as a placeholder for a year until Burke can take over, but why would Nonis do that? Why would he take a job he can’t keep, when there’s almost certainly other options open to him?

  24. Oilman says:

    jonathon, not to worry regarding the Burke rumors – the focus of the Leafs organization will soon switch to one of Paul Holmgren, Ray Shero, Ken Holland, or Bret Hull

  25. Bruce says:

    Aside from those guys, how many GM-type guys are there out there in an assistant role, or minor-league role, or junior role, who might fit?

    After the JFJ experiment-gone-wrong, (not to mention similar experience in Hogtown with J.P. Ricciardi) the last thing the Leafs Nation wants is another junior executive, no matter how qualified.

    Finally, the media keep talking about Nonis serving as a placeholder for a year until Burke can take over, but why would Nonis do that? Why would he take a job he can’t keep, when there’s almost certainly other options open to him?

    Well that’s just fucking stupid. Maybe they should just do the Roger Nielson thing and ask the new guy to wear a paper bag over his head. If it’s Nonis, and he accepts the “job” under those circumstances, he’d do best to just keep it on.

  26. Dennis says:

    RB: I can’t believe you’ve spent so much time thinking about me!! I’m flattered;)

    Danny: I know it’s sad the Leaves haven’t won in 41 years but we’re 18 years into our own drought as well. I respect Lain but it’s shortsighted to keep putting the boots to the Leaves when we’re being run by a guy who’s best trait is he can fool all the dummies.

  27. Oilman says:

    Would things be that different if we had won game 7?

  28. Oilman says:

    To compare the Leafs to the Oilers over the last 18 years is a little shortsighted in itself isn’t it? I mean, were the Leafs ever run under a budget? Do you really think we’d be 18 years into a drought if Gainers didn’t need bailing out? Come on dennis – it’s Apples and Oranges – let’s not start talking crazy.

  29. Bruce says:

    let’s not start talking crazy.

    Let’s not start?

  30. Oilman says:

    Bruce – good point

  31. CrazyCoach says:

    I think it was Billy Beane who counts pennants as much as championship banners.

    Nothing wrong with having the ladies in here.

    The sausage party mode gets a little creepy once in awhile.

  32. rickibear says:

    Dennis: I try to understand why people take the perspective they do.
    I use there view to check for flaws in my thought and I adjust my view acordingly.

    I struggled with your thought process when you come up with your views.

    When you come out with the attacks on Kevin Lowe it is hard guage it to opposite views. But I laugh and am entertained.

    You would do well as a Toronto sports writer.

    Now to the Toronto GM situation:
    If I am Anaheim, I publicaly state we are asking for Toronto’s #1 2008and Alex Steen for Todd Bertuzzi and the rights to sign Brian Burke.

  33. Rand says:

    “I wonder if there’s an LT in the Leaves fan circle”

    There isn’t. A few nice bloggers, but nothing akin to what the Oilogosphere boasts.
    Hence why my hockey related RSS feeds are disproportionately weighted towards Oilers and then everything else.

    You might be surprised how many Leaf fans pay attention to Lowetide.

  34. Dennis says:

    RicK: I wish it was only laughing that came to me when I read some of your stuff:)

    OM: If you want to start talking apples and oranges, we could do that:)

  35. Oilman says:

    Don’t leave me hanging dennis – I’m sure you’ve got theories that need to be explored

  36. Dennis says:

    OM: I’m just saying that if you want to break out that old fruity axiom;) then let’s talk about the difference in a GM that can bring in fans and one that can win games.

    I think LT nailed it when he said Lowe makes feel comfortable even in losing and I don’t think Lowe’s terrible but I judge him on what he’s done for the team ON the ice.

    And maybe that’s the difference.

  37. Oilman says:

    So you’re the smart fan for taking Lowe to task on every move, and I’m the dumb one for acknowledging the great series of moves that nearly won us the cup?…that’s the apple and orange you speak of?

  38. Dennis says:

    No, not at all.

    I just look at all the things Lowe hasn’t done and all the years he hasn’t done them and I look at results.

    Some fellows are just happy because he sells tickets and/or makes them feel better.

    The results aren’t really there so I don’t know why anyone would think it’s great that he’s still our GM. That’s the way I see things.

  39. Oilman says:

    I don’t know who would by a ticket to an Oilers game because Lowe is the GM – average fan wise? Perhaps he’s good with the corporate crowd – and if that’s the case then perhaps a President position would be better suited

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