[11:20am] So the Leafs' ball gets rolling as the Wade Belak Era has ended. He has been moved to the Florida Panthers for a 5th round pick in this summer's draft. Belak was a great guy but was only marginally better than Woz as a defender and the team has much better 3rd and 4th liners. It's good to see the team get something for someone that has no part in the team's future.
On second thought: This is WADE BELAK moving to Florida! Who will Sportsnet use for their funny segments now? What about LeafsTV?! This move has a huge effect on the local television funny segment market. It'll be interesting to see what moves will arise from trying to fill that void. Look for TSN to take advantage by bringing back funnyman Tie Domi and Sportsnet will probably take a chance on Jeremy Williams who has shown flashes of humour.
[12:50pm] I am off to lunch so you can just assume that the trades will be fast and furious while I am gone. Feel free to post any Leafs trades and offer instant analysis.
[2:20pm] Wow. Good thing I don't run a site based on breaking trades. This day sucks so far. Only one really big move. 40 minutes left and the summer looms large for the Leafs. Let's see what Cliff has up his sleeves.
[2:56pm] Here's a deal! Hal Gill to the Penguins for a 2nd and 5th rounder. Great move by the Silver Fox who got more than what I thought Gill would draw (a 2nd/3rd rounder) which will open up room for Stralman and Kronwall to step into the lineup.
[3:00pm] That's all she wrote for any deals not already set up. Not quite the big day that Leaf fans had expected but there are three more picks in the kitty and my friend that called it a multiple year rebuild was right. The Leafs still have the summer to look forward to in terms of moving guys so this is not a disaster by any stretch of the imagination. It's not what we wanted, obviously, but it was a good start. I'll have a bigger recap on the day and what it means for the Leafs later today once things have settled down.
[3:24pm] Kilger goes to the Panthers for a 3rd round pick. The year's on these deals haven't been confirmed yet but another clearing of salary from next year's number and another pick.
[3:40pm] So TSN still has not announced that the Leaf are on the list of teams that are officially done but if the picks are in 2008 then the Leafs are looking at their own first, the Pens' second (their own went to SJ for Toskala), their own third and the Panther's third, and the Leafs', Pens', and Panthers' 5th round picks.