It figures—the one weekend I'm away from a TV, radio, or I have to pay between $5.95 and $14.97 for anywhere from 15 to 60 minutes of internet access just so happens to have some of the juiciest news emanating from the streets of Toronto.
Man do I hate weddings.
Sidenote: Ok, so I don't hate weddings, and it was a very nice time. But seriously, the fact that I was finding out some of the most interesting things concerning my teams via three-to-five minutes of cable television at 2:00am while fighting off what would soon become a roaring hangover, the front page of newspapers I was too cheap to buy, and the random musings of people at the bar meant that I wasn't a very happy camper.
Either way, I'm back, and prepared for the week ahead, which with my luck will yield nothing of importance. However, just how crazy was this past weekend? Well...
The Toronto Maple Leafs gave the Montreal Canadiens negotiating rights with Mats Sundin:
Any other year I'd be appalled and full of anger at Leafs' brass. Not this one though.
The fact is, is that if you're Mats Sundin, then you need out of Toronto—we can't do him any good any more.
Mats tried and gave his blood, sweat, and tears the entire time he was here, and aside from a brief stint with Alexander Mogilny and Gary Roberts, we've been able to give him the kind of support that a true Superstar needs.
Despite that though, he's always carried the team and given it his all and stuck with the Blue and White through thick and thin—which is something worth saying about a player given the structure of sports these days. He honored his contract, and gave us his best, so he now deserves his chance to ride off into the sunset however he wants.
If he decides that it's somewhere other than Toronto, I can't say I blame him.
Jamal Mayers gets traded to Toronto
Well, I guess if we're letting Sundin go, you need to find his replacement right?
In a move straight out of JFJ's books, Cliff Fletcher went out and swapped a third round pick for a thirty-three year old who has broken the thirty-point barrier once in his professional hockey career—in the AHL with Worcester in 1997/98.
In the middle of a season if the team is approaching a playoff run, this deal makes sense as it could be seen as an attempt to add depth and grit, however in the offeseason it's a little more questionable—these are the kinds of problems Fletcher was brought in to solve was he not?
The one scenario that really seems to click though? Darcy Tucker is on his way out and Mayers is the replacement. I really can't say whether I like the move or not until we get the whole story, and I'm not quite sure we've heard it all yet.
The Toronto Blue Jays Cleaned House
As Sean Crowe said: "Congrats on getting rid of Grady Little. Now all you have to do is oust Dan Duquette".
You know what that means ladies and gentlemen: John 'Jimy Williams' Gibbons is finally out and Cito Gaston is back!
To be completely honest however, I don't think it'll change much—this team could (and probably will) very well continue to underachieve, especially with Shaun Marcum going down to injury and the offense that comes alive once every six games.
Is it nice to have Gaston back? Sure it is, but I'll be much happier when J.P. Ricciardi is sipping cocktails in the same foreign country as John Gibbons, far, far away.
Depending on what happens, they can take Brandon League with them to.
JP Ricciardi is just making everyone angry!
First JP Ricciardi decided to call Adam Dunn unmotivated, which prompted the Cincinnati Slugger to call Ricciardi a clown.
Given that a majority of fans would rather have a guy who can hit 40+ homers a year and drive in 100+ RBI in a year (remember the 2006 Troy Glaus?) even with the astronomically small average and high strikeout numbers, over a slimey, greasy, used-car salesman as a general manager, that's a sentiment that I think most of us can agree with.
Needless to say, the bashing continued.
This morning, Ernie Whitt (who was included in the mass of firings) accused Ricciardi of having it out for him, citing his "reduced role" with the team this season—Whitt went from being bench coach last season to being first base coach this year.
Whitt then continued on to say that he was "the best manager that Toronto never hired".
There's nothing wrong with bringing Cito in to manage, but it seemed as though Whitt deserved a shot at least—he had essentially been groomed and was preparing to one day be a big-league manager, hopefully in Toronto.
But according to J.P., what J.P. giveth, J.P. can taketh away:
"People forget that it was me who made him a big-leaguer" Ricciardi said, "I was the one that gave him his shot".
Yes he is right in that he hired Ernie into the bigs, but do I really have to tell you that J.P. made himself sound more asinine than ever with that comment?
Ernie Whitt gave everything he had as a player and a coach to the Jays organization, and was putting work in in the minors well before 'Jesus' P. Ricciardi ever got there. It's not like you just plucked him up out of a Burger King and gave him a job J.P. The man did something to earn it.
The day you're out as GM Mr. Ricciardi, could very well we see Mr. Whitt return to be more successful than you ever were.
Are the Raptors close to dealing T.J. Ford?
Apparently the Toronto Raptors are closing in on swapping Rasho Nesterovich and T.J. Ford for Jermaine O'Neil—the news just keeps getting better and better!
Anyhow, that's the weekend that was, and that's the weekend that I missed. I guess that teaches me to never go on vacation again.