As a diehard Maple Leaf fan, there haven't been many moments in the past few years that have made me very happy when it comes to my team.
However, this offseason is shaping up to be different, with many signings that appear to have potential in the long term development of the Leafs’ roster. However, one signing was made for the purpose of short term success.
With the signing of Curtis Joseph to a one year/$700,000 deal, the Leafs have found the perfect goaltender to replace the failure that was Andrew Raycroft, and it is easy to see that Cujo is ready for his second tenure with the Boys in Blue.
Curtis Joseph first signed with Leafs after the 1997/1998 season. It is with Toronto that Joseph gained league wide notoriety as a premier goaltender.
With Toronto, Joseph attained three 30+ win seasons and was runner up to for the Vezina Trophy in two out of those three seasons. As well, he played a key role in Toronto's run to Eastern Conference Finals in 1999 and then again in 2002.
Joseph left the Leafs after the 2001/2002 season to sign with the Detroit Red Wings.
Rumors of a difficult relationship with Pat Quinn, as well as wanting to play for a Cup contender, seem to be the primary theories as to why Joseph decided not to resign with the Buds.
After his departure from Toronto, Cujo played for the Wings, the Phoenix Coyotes, as well as the Calgary Flames.
With Vesa Toskala being an excellent goaltender to fill the role of the No. 1 goalie in Toronto, and with Andrew Raycroft being bought out by MLSE, the time for Joseph's return to Toronto is perfect.
With the team in desperate need of a consistent back-up goalie, Joseph is the man to fill the role. Furthermore, he is capable of providing a much needed leadership boost to the roster, being a veteran player, as well as a former Leaf.
Because of this, it is easy to see that Cujo will fit in perfectly with Toronto in the 2008/2009 NHL season. And because I am a Cujo fan, it will be nice to see him back in a Leaf uniform.