Don't Give Up On Brian Burke In Toronto Just Yet

Dave McCarthyCorrespondent IMay 10, 2008

Heard on Episode 3.36 of AFITC 

So does anybody really think the Brian Burke to Toronto scenario is over and done with? It seemed that way two weeks ago when Burke himself came out and said he will be serving out the duration of his contract as general manager of the Anaheim Ducks. But even after that statement, the rumors just won’t seem to go away.

It seems logical that from a personal standpoint Burke would welcome a move to Toronto to take over the Maple Leafs. He has children currently living in Boston, a long trek from Anaheim but far less daunting from Toronto. Of course, Burke’s wife, who works occasionally as a broadcaster in Vancouver would likely be able to find employment in Toronto while being closer to husband.

When stories surfaced last week about the Leafs interest in former Canucks GM Dave Nonis, it only added more fuel to the Burke speculation. With Burke being denied permission to get out of his contract, Nonis, a friend of Burke's and former right hand man in Vancouver, could keep the GM seat warm for a year until Burke’s contract with the Ducks runs out, at which time Burke could come in to take over the hockey operations department of the Maple Leafs and rework the front office as he sees fit.

However at this point, the Maple Leaf Board of Governors insistence that they are not meddling in the process of hockey decisions seems somewhat hard to believe, especially after the curious timing of the Paul Maurice firing and Richard Peddie’s lip syncing of Cliff Fletcher’s introduction speech back in January. The Leafs will never win if Peddie et al. continue to play armchair general manager. The good news for Leaf fans is that if Brian Burke does eventually take the Leaf general managers position, this meddling from upper management will have come to an end. And if it hasn’t, don’t expect Burke to be around too long.