It appears the much anticipated housecleaning in Toronto has begun.
According to TSN, Maple Leafs interim general manager Cliff Fletcher has fired head coach Paul Maurice along with assistant Randy Ladouceur.
The 41-year-old Maurice still had one year remaining on his three-year contract. He was hired back in 2005 by then Leafs GM John Ferguson Jr to guide the team's American Hockey League affiliate.
Then, when the Leafs let go Pat Quinn, Ferguson hired Maurice to coach the big club on May 12, 2006.
In two seasons under Maurice, the Leafs failed to qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. It has been three years since the Leafs have made it to the post-season.
That likely was the main reason for the Maurice firing.
It should be noted, however, that despite injuries to key players and a myriad of off-ice distractions in 2007-08 season, Maurice did a commendable job keeping his team in the race until the final week of the regular season.