Brian Burke has frequently relayed to the media that "Hockey is like a game of chess." Today's signing of Darryl Boyce could just be the latest pre-move in his metaphorical game.
During the past week or so, Burke has signed Phillip Dupuis, re-signed Mike Zigomanis along with Darryl Boyce and added Cody Franson via trade. These are all players who can immediately step in and help, but at the moment, there is no roster spot available for them. Schenn, however, has yet to sign his John Hancock on the dotted line.
One could argue that these signings/trades are strictly for depth purposes, but what if Burke has something up his sleeve? What if these players were brought in to fill the voids of certain players who are on their way out - players who will ultimately be lost in a deal centered around Luke Schenn?
Before you lose your cool, ask yourself this: Why has Stamkos been under such scrutiny while Luke Schenn has avoided it—especially in a media-crazed city like Toronto? Why is all quiet in Leaf Land regarding Schenn's lack of a new contract? After all, both have yet to sign.
We all know that Schenn is Burke's golden boy, but what if the main reason Schenn has no contract is that Burke has other plans for him - plans that do not involve him wearing Blue and White next season?
Boyce has undoubtedly proven that he can provide tons of energy at an NHL-caliber level. Zigomanis is probably the most underrated third/fourth-line center in the entire NHL (at least according to Don Cherry). Dupuis played the entire season in Colorado last year, and did a wonderful job in his role, I might add. Franson WILL be a stud-defenseman in the very near future.
So what does all this mean, exactly? Is a major trade on the horizon? Is Burke stocking up on role players to compensate for the pieces that will be lost in this trade? We all know Burke manipulates the media and will say anything, truth or not, to avoid tipping his hat to a potential suitor.
It's just my opinion, but I feel a move coming? How about you?