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Maple Leafs v. Flyer: Luke Schenn Returns To Toronto

The drafting of Luke Schenn was meant to signal the beginning of a new era for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Ultimately, however, he represents the lost potential of the Brian Burke Era. On his return, let's remember some of the reasons why we loved Our Luke And Saviour before he was sacrificed for James van Riemsdyk.

Kevin Hoffman-US PRESSWIRE

Tonight, the first prospect of the new Toronto Maple Leafs' rebuilding process, Luke Schenn, returns to the ACC as a member of the Philadelphia Flyers. The team will likely put together a video to greet him but it probably won't be as realistic about his time as a Leaf. Unfortunately, I'm not a video guy so instead of one really great video here are some clips. Enjoy.

Here's TSN coverage of the Leafs' drafting Luke Schenn. Pierre McGuire and Bob McKenzie were really effusive about the pick. So were we. We gave him a cutesy nickname - Our Luke And Saviour - which turned out to be even more prescient than expected when his career as a Leaf was sacrificed so that the Leafs could land that elusive power forward. Sigh.

This massive hit on Evgeni Malkin and the subsequent fight with Tyler Kennedy will probably be the iconic memory of Schenn's time as a Leaf. It highlighted his ability to lay a big hit and to back that up with his fists. Of course, he did provide a lot of big hits.

Jon Sim

Antoine Vermette

Radek Dvorak

Tomas Vincour

The Kessely Snipes Treatment

He even managed to score a few beautiful goals that always kind of hinted at the possibility that as he adjusted to the NHL that he may have more to offer than defence. That he might grow into the pedigree with which he was saddled when he was drafted by the Leafs.

Icing on the cake in a blowout of the Senators

End to end against the Bruins

Ultimately, Schenn's ceiling was not commensurate with his long-term contract and the Leafs needed to fill a hole upfront. The importance of having a defence that can move the puck forward saw the Leafs move in a different direction over the past couple of drafts and this was the end result.

TSN Trade coverage

The good news is that Philadelphia's reporters have all been really happy with Schenn. If you see them on Twitter you can catch all of the ways they try to remind people that they got a good player in exchange for JVR. They'll mention that he has a lot of hits or that he's scored a goal. Although somehow they missed his first one as a Flyer.

I guess we'll just have to assuage our pangs of longing with goals like this:

I think that we'll live. Welcome back Luke. Feel free to share your favourite Luke Schenn moment, post, or picture in the comments.