clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

The looming decision about Lou Lamoriello

New, comments

The Leafs are out of the playoffs, so the speculation and rumours about who will be the GM after July 1 boiled over immediately.

2015 Hockey Hall Of Fame Induction - Red Carpet Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

TSN radio promoted an interview with Daren Dreger on Thursday that went this way:

And then Dreger corrected the ensuing perception this way:

Listen to the full interview here, and you will hear right off the bat a qualification that all information is speculation. Someone should have told TSN that.

The information Dreger says he’s got, based on conversations Lamoriello has had with agents, is that he’s planning on staying another year after his contract ends this June 30. So this is second-hand informed speculation. At best.

The conversation turns to the great Kyle Dubas - Colorado Avalanche caper of last summer, with a weird segue to Nashville and the Wild, and then Dreger asserts as fact that the NHL intervened in the Avs caper last year and said that since Dubas was under contract to the Leafs, and the Leafs had told the league that Dubas would be the next GM, that no interview with the Avs by Dubas could take place. Okay. That’s a slightly new spin on it.

Then he gives you his personal view of the dynamic between Mike Babcock and Lou Lamoriello based on what sounds like a less than complete story about Babcock phoning Detroit about Luke Glendening. The rest of the bit is some more — look, I think this is fiction, about Auston Matthews’ alleged dissatisfaction or potential conflict with Lamoriello. The longer I listened, the more it sounded like a radio play talking about fictional characters loosely based on members of the Leafs.

You listen. You decide.

So the question is, do people outside the Leafs organization think Lou Lamoriello is coming back for another year, or perhaps a term approaching a year?

PPP found some:

Katya: Before I even knew this little tempest in a teapot had started up, I was thinking about this, and I couldn’t see how you fit a change of management for the Leafs, with it’s knock-on effects on the Marlies, into the current offseason unless you either did it Monday morning or late August.

There’s too much to do! There’s free agents, there’s draft picks to sign, there’s Matt Martin to deal with, there’s the draft, there’s nine RFAs, one of them William Nylander, and then there’s Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews. You need those contracts all lined up, bing, bang, boom, to know what the cap situation is.

Oh, and in a free moment, please get a defenceman. And a centre. Or two. And potentially a new coach for the Marlies, and cripes, I need a nap just thinking about it. So no. The only rational approach is to declare the succession and then do it gradually.

seldo: I don’t think anything is changing this summer. Lou will get one more year as GM, Kyle Dubas will keep running the Marlies and assisting Lou and Mark Hunter will scout and draft then scout some more.

I don’t think enough steps forward were taken for Shanahan and Lou to feel comfortable changing things. They’ll look for a defender, try to tinker with that and the amount of turnover on the forward corps happening may keep the management the same for now.

Things may go better! Or not. What I am looking forward to is the golden Dubas being passed over one more year. It’s nothing personal against him, he was very nice as I chased him down a hallway in Guelph. I just have questions about the reaction to the announcement Lou is back one more year as GM, that he’s going to do all that bad Lou stuff and not the cool things that young glasses-wearing Kyle would do (like hire Sheldon Keefe twice and other things in the Soo) despite no evidence being given that Dubas also didn’t want Polak back or Luke Glendening on the team.

What I’m basically saying is I want both good things and chaos, and I’m not just calling him Lou to avoid spelling his last name.

Fulemin: I think it’s going to be one more year of Lou and then Dubas. Whatever else you might say about him, Lou generally has handled RFA negotiations well, and he could conceivably do all of the contracts for the Big Three this summer. I find it hard to say what Dubas is and isn’t good at as an NHL GM with regards to contracts and free agency, because I don’t think we have a meaningful sample of him doing it. I have no idea how good he is.

I don’t think this situation can persist more than one more year, though.