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Brian Burke Gets His Man: A Closer Look At the Deal for Phil Kessel

Derek HarmsworthSenior Writer ISeptember 19, 2009


It’s just after 10 AM on a Saturday morning in Toronto.  It’s September.  The mornings are cooler these days, but the sun which makes the dew on the grass glisten like diamonds can be an enchanting scene as you read your morning paper and enjoy a coffee.

Especially when you’re Brian Burke and no doubt skewered across the front of any paper he picks up will be a picture and headline that he had a direct hand in.

After months of speculation and attempts, Brian Burke got his man yesterday, officially obtaining the rights to Phil Kessel.  He then quickly signed Kessel to a five-year, $27 million contract.

Somewhere Brian Burke is smiling.  And don’t take it for granted, it doesn’t happen a lot.

The Maple Leafs, however, paid a stiff price for the American born winger.  First and second round draft choices in 2010, plus another first in 2011 have been awarded to the Bruins in exchange for the services of Kessel, a speedy forward with a creative imagination who certainly automatically becomes the most talented player on this Maple Leafs roster.

There have been times throughout last year, and even early this year, where it looked like the team had a strong enough game overall to win contests, but lacked a true finisher who could bury the chances late in games.

They certainly appear to have that now.

To continue reading Derek's closer look at the Phil Kessel trade, click here

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