Ben Winnett's Thought on the Toronto Maple Leafs

AndrewCorrespondent IJanuary 5, 2009

Well, it's official. I'm bored. I'm tired of working on the new Leafs This Week website. I'm tired of facebook. I'm tired of Halo 3, call of duty, rainbow six Vegas two, World of Warcraft, and Runescape.

I was looking through a couple of my past articles and found my interview with Ben Winnett. I said something about Ben's views and thoughts, but you had to tune in to hear them. I'll admit it, the quality wasn't too great, so if you did tune in, or you didn't, here it is.


Andrew: Hey Ben, what are your views or thoughts about Luke Schenn staying in the NHL instead of going back to the minors. Or just any other player going to the NHL right after being drafted. Do you think it could stunt their development or anything like that?

Ben: Well, a player like Luke is obviously a very talented player and he's proved that he's NHL ready, but I don't think it's stunting his development at all going from the Western Hockey League, to the NHL where he can play 20 plus minutes. As far as it goes for other players that are only playing six or seven minutes, I don't think it'd hurt them to spend another year in juniors and maybe a one year season in the American League.

Someone like Luke, minus injuries added, has played very well so far, so I think he's talented enough to make that jump at the age of eighteen and step right into the NHL.


Andrew: Interesting thoughts Ben. This next topic is a rather interesting one. As you know, Mats Sundin signed with the Vancouver Canucks prior to the deadline. Last season, he was against players joining a team midway though the season. What's your opinion on Mats Sundin joining a team midway despite what he said, or just any player joining a team mid-season?

Ben: Well, obviously it's a controversial issue, you know, the top biggest players being rental players, and being traded just before the deadline to teams that are contenders. Someone like Mats is obviously in a different situation; not playing the first half of the year. He was kinda deciding whether or not to come back to the NHL and where he was going to sign.

Being from Vancouver, there's a lot of excitement going around. They're very happy to have a player of Sundin's calibre to be joining a team who's already a contender. So I'm happy for Vancouver, I'm happy for Mats to be back in the game and playing somewhere he likes. We'll just have to see how he does now, and hopefully help Vancouver become a real contender.


Andrew: Myself being from the west coast too, I can tell there's a lot of excitement in Vancouver at the moment. Final topic of the day Ben, We see the Leafs going from a team with veteran players to a team full of young players and no captain, what's your perspective on this?

Ben: Well, obviously for a younger guy like me it's very exciting news, that most of the Toronto players are young, and they're looking to develop their prospects through their system. The last couple of years; the Leafs have been an older team, relying on experience.

With Brian Burke coming in now and the management changing, I think they really want to give the young guys a shot to develop a potential contender in the next few years, instead of going for a quick fix, and getting veteran leveled players to lead the team.

They're rebuilding from the core, using their own guys, like the ones playing for the Marlies, and I think that's an excellent idea, and hopefully it works out for the best.


Andrew: Thanks for being with us Ben, we wish you the best in your career.

Ben: Thank you, thank you for having me.