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At the risk of sounding like a Brian Burke cheering section, I'll keep this short and sweet.
Brian Burke has not always been a name synonymous with rejoicing and standing ovations around Leaf nation.
However, he's a huge reason why Toronto even has a look at the playoffs this late in the year.
It's been vexing and even perplexing at times, but he's brought a lot of the right pieces to the table.
A lot of skeptics gave Burke an extremely difficult time when he initially traded for Kessel, since forking over two first-rounders seemed to be an awful lot for him at the time.
However, Brian had a plan and never once doubled-back on his decision or logic.
Even after the Leafs tanked the year—supplying the Bruins with the second overall pick in 2010—he maintained that Toronto got their guy.
They were happy with how things turned out, and why wouldn't they be?
Since coming to Toronto, Kessel has been a consistent goal scoring threat, something Burke knows you can't always find in the draft.
Give the man some credit too: He's managed to make some trades where the Leafs have almost stolen talent away from teams.
Somehow, Brian Burke managed to convince Calgary to take forwards Matt Stajan, Niklas Hagman, Jamal Mayers and defenseman Ian White in exchange for Dion Phaneuf, Keith Aulie and a potential depth player.
Think about that for a second.
While losing little more than spare parts and baggage, the Leafs shed salary, and added a player that has since gone on to captain the team.
If you're not impressed yet, take his trade last year with Anaheim to see another case of his sly trade maneuvering.
Toronto picked up Jake Gardiner and Joffrey Lupul from the Ducks for the lowly price of Francois Beauchemin in return—a deal Anaheim is surely regretting after watching both players soar over the course of the year.
I could go on, but you get the point.
Even if a few draft picks for Kessel may have been a little steep at the time, it's fair to say that Burke has more than compensated for any loss, and then some.
Now that Rick Nash is reportedly on the market as well, fans are wondering if Burke will make a move for the talented forward.
While the fantasy trades pitched by Leaf supporters are laughably low, Columbus fans aren't laughing at all.
They know that if there's one man that could convince their team to part with Nash for Clarke MacArthur, and a stocked soda machine, it's Brian Burke.
Bottom Line: Burke has to stay active at the deadline to keep improving the roster.