I will give this to the Toronto Maple Leafs, they certainly know how to liven up the off season, if they can now translate that to the regular season and playoffs, then Leafs Nation will be dancing in the streets.
Leafs President Brendan Shanahan pulled off his latest coup yesterday, plucking Lou Lamoriello off the forced retirement pile in New Jersey when no one else thought he was even on the market.
Lou made the point yesterday of saying that he along with the Devils ownership brought in Ray Shero as his succession plan…baloney! The fact that Lamoriello so quickly ended up in Toronto shows me that was a shotgun retirement. But now that is ancient history; Lou is a Leaf now.
Lamoriello comes to the Leafs with a great resume; before the league went to the salary cap. In the past ten years, the Devils have been hit or miss, with more misses. They have won five playoff series, three in one year, 2012, when they went to the Cup Final before losing to Los Angeles.
What 72 year old Lamoriello does bring to the table is experience and contacts. Lou has contacts in the NHL older than his 28 year old assistant Kyle Dubas. That is no sleight on Dubas, he is already considered one of the league’s best and brightest, no he gets to learn at the feet of Yoda.
Lou becomes the final piece of the Leafs front office puzzle and he knows that Toronto is not a quick fix. The one thing Shanahan has done that Burke, Nonis and Ferguson couldn’t was change the hearts and minds of ownership…they had to embrace the winds of change, and finally they have.
Now it’s up to Lou and the crew to get it done in Toronto. If anything, it will certainly be interesting to watch Leafs Nation have to be patient…that will be a sport unto itself.