Bigger Buds (Not that kind!)

Louis PisanoAnalyst IJuly 27, 2009

ROME - JULY 26:  Michael Phelps of the United States celebrates as he receives the gold medal during the medal ceremony for the Men's 4x 100m Freestyle Final during the 13th FINA World Championships at the Stadio del Nuoto on July 26, 2009 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

By Louis “King of Roncesvalles” Pisano...

While looking down the roster that’s posted on the Toronto Maple Leafs site I noticed that two forwards (Blake and Grabovski) and one defenseman (Ian White) were the only players listed under 6'0" (Toskala as well). This team is slowly taking on the Brian Burke size requirement, quite similar to his squawking ducks team, of course the Leafs are still lacking the skilled players that were on the Anaheim roster.

Burke has certainly built himself a foundation of grit and size, but really this is not a young team, the average age of this team is 27.4, so by the time he gets the skilled players to put the puck in the net, half these guys are going to be gone, I have to ask...really what is he doing to step up to this five year plan of bringing a winning or at least competitive product to the ice for our beloved team? Granted they will be tough and no one is really going to want to play against them if they play the way they are expected too, but, is that going to put W’s in the win column and get this team to the promised land? (The Playoffs)

The young skilled players that could step into some of the roles in the future are all in and around 6'0"as well, Kadri 6’0", Stalberg 6’3", Tlusty 6’0", Bozak 6’1", Flaake 6’2", DeDominico 5’11", so perhaps the future maybe bright for our buds, we know the seats will be filled, but will the net?

I think this will be an entertaining season of hockey to say the least. Will it be a winning season? Does Burke have anymore tricks up his sleeve this offseason? With the physical style of play this team is going bring, how healthy will they stay throughout the grind? When do some of these young skilled guys get a look at the NHL level? All good questions, I believe. I am sure the list of questions from Leafs fans could fill another page or two, but for the moment this is where we stand.

I really hope the Maple Leafs organization finally develops some of their young players and doesn’t make the bonehead types of trades we as fans have seen over, hmmm, well, at least my whole lifetime of almost 40 years.

Mr. Burke, keep up the semi-good work and please bring us true fans, not the corporate asses that fill the lower bowl seats at the ACC, a winning team! Thanks.