Burke Continues To "Lupe" In Future Talent

February 9th, 2011. This date is the date where in my opinion, Burke made the most pivotal trade of his time with the Maple Leafs. Still, in my opinion, Burke has done a great job retooling this team, and bringing in some great promising future. Lets take a look at some of the bigger moves Burke has made during his time in Toronto...

July 1st - 2009:

To Toronto:
- Garnett Exelby
- Colin Stuart

To Atlanta:
- Pavel Kubina
- Tim Stapleton

Honestly, I don't think anyone won that trade... Toronto now has neither player, and Kubina has trailed off.

July 27th - 2009:

To Toronto:
- Wayne Primeau
- 2011 2nd Round Pick

To Calgary:
- Colin Stuart
- Anton Stralman
- 2012 7th Round Pick

I think Calgary came out on top here a bit... I would have liked to see Stralman develop some more in Toronto. But we did get the 2nd rounder... which Burke does have an alright history with getting steals like McKegg.

September 18th - 2009:

To Toronto:
-Phil Kessel

To Boston:
2010/2011 1st Round Picks
2010 2nd Round Pick

Honestly, it seems hugely lop-sided... but people need to get over it. Yes, Boston won it, but Kessel is a great player and a character guy.

December 3rd - 2009:

To Toronto:
- Phillipe Paradis

To Carolina:
- Jiri Tlusty

I haven't seem much of either of them, but from what i've read and seen, Paradis is more promising.

January 31st - 2010:

To Toronto:
- Dion Phaunef
- Keith Aulie
- Fredrik Sjostrom

To Calgary:
- Niklas Hagman
- Matt Stajan
- Jamal Mayers
- Ian White

I think Toronto came out huge on this one. They dumped two pending free agents; Stajan and Mayers. They made room for some younger guys trading White. On top of that, they got defensive stud Dion Phanuef (great leader, I have a lot of faith his play will continue to pick up as it already is), popular prospect Keith Aulie, and a much needed boost to the 3rd line/Penalty Kill in Sjostrom.

To Toronto:
- Jean-Sebastien Gigure

To Anaheim:
- Vesa Toskala
- Jason Blake

Many thought Blake was going to be impossible to move... but Burke moved him AND faltering goaltender; Vesa Toskala, for Conn-Smythe/Stanley Cup winner, Jean-Sebastien Giguere. Giguere may not be the goalie he once was... but regardless of if he gets traded, leaves in the off-season, or resigns at a much smaller price, his valuable experience has most deffinately helped Gustavsson, and more recently James Reimer.

Toronto made out very well on January 31st, 2010.

June 30th - 2010:

To Toronto:
- Kris Versteeg
- Bill Sweatt

To Chicago:
- Phillipe Paradis
- Viktor Stalberg
- Chris DiDeminico

I would have loved to see Stalberg stay with the Leafs... but Kris Versteeg is great young roster player, who regardless of whether he is moved before this years deadline, will have a good career. Win-Win for both teams.

January 13th - 2011:

To Toronto:
- Fabiann Brunnstrom

To Dallas:
- Mikhail Stefanovich

Again I think Toronto made out well here... Brunnstrom needs to develop a bit more... he'll be a great 3rd line plug.

February 9th - 2011:

To Toronto:
- Joffrey Lupul
- Jake Gardiner
- 2013 4th Round Pick (Conditional)

To Anaheim:
- Francois Beauchemin

I love this deal, HUGE win for Toronto. Toronto gets another top-six forward, who has a cup ring, and lots of playoff experience. Lupul has been haggled by injuries, but should he return to his former self, Leafs got a very powerful, big right winger. Also, Leafs got promising prospect, Jake Gardiner, a former first round pick of Brian Burke. Beauchemin was hands down, an underachiever with the Leafs organistion.

So... to summarize;

Toronto Recieves: Exelby, Stuart, Primeau, Kessel, Paradis, Phanuef, Aulie, Sjostrom, Gigure, Sweatt, Versteeg, Brunnstrom, Lupul, Gardiner, 2nd Round Pick (CGY), CTL 4th Round Pick (ANA)

Toronto Trades: Kubina, Stapleton, Stuart, Stralman, Tlustly, Hagman, White, Stajan, Mayers, Paradis, DiDeminico, Stalberg, Stefanovich, Beauchemin, 2010/2011 First Round Picks, 2010 2nd Round Pick, 2012 7th Round Pick

Compare who currently resides on the Toronto Roster as of this day, and who has been shipped out. Many may say Burke has dug a deeper hole for Leafs Nation, however, I beg to differ. I will deny that statement every single time I hear it. It is undeniable Burke has shaped a brand new team, one that will better off without the players he shipped out.

Now you can try and disagree, but I think once you take a look at this, the only real loss was the 1st Rounder. Otherwise, you can't honestly say he's done a bad job. Sure, the team isn't winning...but does Burke lace up the skates and go out there? No, the players do.

Burke has done his job, and will continue to do a good job at it.

Daniel Woolridge.


Jason Pietroniro's picture

Character guy? Kessel? For real? Guy's a tool. Great player tho

Daniel_W's picture

He's a character guy man. See how well he handled that situation last weekend? He addressed the whole team, talked to Wilson, talked to Burke... I think he's a good guy.