Leafs Nation was abuzz yesterday with something resembling hope after the Globe and Mail reported that Leafs' management has been given the green light to burn the city to the ground and rebuild through the draft system - but for realzies this time, they swear.
This - and other news - to chat about around the water cooler today:
We have heard it before, but Cathal Kelly seems to be a believer that Shanny will stick to a rebuild plan now that he has the apparent approval of the omnipotent MLSE board. The alleged centerpieces of this burn-and-turn scheme are Reilly, Gardiner, Bernier, Nylander, Kadri and JVR - although none of them are considered "untouchable". Notice the glaring omissions of Kessel, Phaneuf and Clarkson. I don't have it in my heart to cheer for them to tank, but if I could somehow find a Delorean, I would shake Shannahan's hand for having the stones to do what no man has done before.
Duthie and the panel on the latest from the Leafs rumour mill, in light of the above.
An article that includes a short debrief of last night's game - and this unlikely line: "the Metropolitan Division-leading Islanders, who have won three straight and four of five" #whatistheworldcomingto
A recap of last night's game in case you didn't see it and you really want to get a good taste of what defeat feels like.
The (starting-to-become-warranted) crucifixion of Kessel continues.
Remember that time that Gary Bettman was the worst Valentine of all time and cancelled hockey? It's been 10 years since the 2004-2005 lockout, and as DGB explores, the year off ended up affecting more change in the NHL than just a Maple Leafs playoff curse and general suckage.
Theo Fleury and the Death Valley Rebels. Not a joke. It sounds like he has more voice modulation than T-Pain.
I sincerely hope there is an open competition for naming LV's inevitable hockey franchise.
I think this is just awesome.
Although I suspect the Leafs will lose just enough games to stay out of the playoffs and win just enough games to miss a decent draft pick, a terrible skid late in the year is always somewhat brightened by a look at what's on tap for the draft. Noah Hanifin - top defensive prospect.
... and while we are talking about drafting, TSN gets into the finer details (read: math) behind draft picks.