Could Burke Be Pleased With The Lockout?
Everyone is pissed.We all want something. The owners want more money,
the players want to play,and the fans want to watch some puck.
All three of these parties don’t seem to be nearing their catch anytime soon, but for Brian Burke and the Toronto Maple Leafs, does he have what he wants?
With the lockout now in full force and the fans distracted from the fact that an off-season in Toronto just flew by, Burke may be smiling in his chair. The off-season was nothing to be proud about for the Leafs, analyzing from a transaction perspective. The team failed to improve significantly and much of the same aspects that established a non-playoff team last year remain on the team. The work stoppage has given the Maple Leafs general manager some time. Some extra time to sort things out with his roster and hopefully construct a playoff worthy team.
Brian Burke has reined as GM of the Leafs since November of 2009, and at each season-ending presser, the Irishman has taken the podium to field questions about a team that to date has not been close to the playoffs. The number one duty on his list was, and is, to buy time for himself. The team was making very steady progress into improving on the ice, and the market has been rather stern when it comes to improving a team. Thus, stating that Burke needed all the time he could get is not something that is up for argument.
The lockout has provided exactly that phenomena for the Leafs GM. If the entirety of the season is wiped out due to this circus, that would mean that nine players from the roster would become free agents. A glad tiding for change? Probably, especially since Burke could bring in a bunch of new players. Keep in mind, defenseman Cody Franson is unsigned right now and is a restricted free agent.
The questions are raised through this article, did Brian Burke dodge a bullet with the lockout? Has this worked out in his favour? My answer is yes, and I am curious to know what my fellow fans think.
One thing is for sure, this team on paper was not at all ready to compete this year. There was a bizarre feeling around the team, one that expressed glum faces from fans and management alike. Much work is needed to be done, and there is no better time than now.
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