Toronto Maple Leafs Need Help Now

Tony MantonContributor ISeptember 26, 2008

What's it going to take? How long can you rebuild?

Simple questions. Yet, I don't think anyone in the Toronto Maple Leafs organization has a clue as to what the answers may be. From top to bottom, this may actually be the worst team in the NHL.

This is a constantly rebuilding team, putting all their hopes on young and semi-talented players such as Steen and Stajan. These two guys have had more hype thrown on them than Michael Jordan—when he was lacing up his boots to play farm-league baseball.

They have a bona-fide superstar in Mats Sundin, who isn't sure if he is going to return—or is he?  Well, he doesn't know. The team doesn't want him—or do they?  Well, they aren't quite sure either.

Finally, the Leafs have managed to get a great coach in Ron Wilson—but there is only so much you can do with what you are given. This is a team with several decent forwards and a decent defenceman or two—certainly not the level of firepower it takes to win games in the NHL. 

Ron Wilson is not a miracle worker. When he was in San Jose he had legitimate threats in Cheechoo, Thornton, and Marleau.

The GM, in case you forgot, was born in 1935. Just bringing that to your attention, because contrary to popular belief, the NHL game has changed a whole lot in the past seven decades that Fletcher has been involved in hockey.

What the Maple Leafs need is a younger GM who understands the game, where it is going, and where this storied franchise needs to go.

What's wrong with bringing in a fresh hockey mind to the organization?  The Toronto Maple Leafs have had some of the most brilliant hockey players of our lifetime—including the likes of Doug Gilmour. Maybe Doug isn't interested, that's understandable.

How about the other hundreds of NHL players who grew up in Ontario, worshiping the Toronto Maple Leafs?  These guys are out there, they have the hockey knowledge to help this team—and if the Leafs don't act soon it could be another season at the bottom of the pile, looking up.

No, I am not a Toronto Maple leafs fan. That's quite clear.

However, there are still millions of them out there. Who no matter what, through thick and thin—and believe me those wins are gonna be coming very thin—always stick by their team. Their loyalty to this franchise is phenomenal, but that's what true fans do. Stick by their team.

As content as I am to sit back and watch this team and their fans suffer year in and year out, the NHL needs this team to succeed.

They are an original-six team, they are one of Canada's teams and putting all my pride,  I would love to see the Toronto Maple Leafs rebound and have a great season—right behind the Habs.