It's his third stint with the Leafs and Ron Wilson's trials as I like to call it are beginning to foreshadow an end to his career as a coach with the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Ron Wilson was named the 27th head coach in Toronto Maple Leafs history on June 10, 2008. In his first season with Toronto, the Maple Leafs compiled a record of 34-35-13.
Since then, his record has fallen to a dismal low with the Leafs club. He now approaches his third opportunity, with a team refreshed, refurbished, and as the youngest team in the NHL.
He has no excuses, no liabilities when it comes to defense, offense, and goaltending.
There is no one he can point a finger at and blame if he doesn't not make the playoffs in the 2010-2011 season.
Ultimately, the dramatic changes in Toronto set a tone for the expendability of Ron Wilson as the coach of the Leafs. If he is not able to persuade and motivate this team to a challenging position in the standings, and one with a playoff spot, his stint as a Leaf is coming to a close.
Don't get me wrong, Ron Wilson has a proven track record with the San Jose Sharks, and under him they were the only NHL team to have won at least one playoff round in each of the last four years. In addition, with a record of 206-134-45, Wilson surpassed Darryl Sutter as the Sharks’ all-time wins leader.
But these impressive titles and accomplishments are undermined if Wilson fails to take the Leafs far in the standings in the upcoming season. Another falter in the standings would not only pave the way for another top 10 draft pick for the Boston Bruins, but it would ultimately cost him his job.
With a young roster, and an efficient GM, Ron Wilson has the support and backing as far as he needs it as long as he is able to persuade this team in the right direction. If Wilson does not do that though, then this failure would tint his credibility as a coach, at least in the eyes of Leafs Nation.
For all the right reasons, I hope that Ron Wilson is able to bounce back and make this team a playoff contender. He needs this as a coach, and the fans need it for the success of the franchise they hold dear.