Lou Lamoriello is the new GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Saying that, I wonder how this changes the process on the direction of the team goes? Or does it? How comfortable is Lou with being there for the next five years in a total rebuild? Or does this mean that Shanny has told him that this is quicker? There is no quick fix here. The Leafs have to do this the right way.
Lou is set in his ways. It’s either his way or no way. Lou has to be given the green light. He must have the final say on this team's direction. So how does this affect Mike Babcock? When the Leafs hired Babcock, Shanny gave Babcock some say on the transactions. More to the point: Babcock has been given the final say.
How is Mike Babcock going to take this after hearing this press conference? Can these two communicate? Can they agree on the direction the team going to take? Lou pretty much said he is the one who is going to make the final choice. What happens if Babcock and Lamoriello disagree on an issue? Will Babcock let things go or will there be a power struggle?
How far will this rebuild go? What do the Leafs do with the core that is left?
I know we all have heard the news that Babcock wants Dion to stay for the full rebuild. This confuses me. He is a replaceable seven million dollar defenseman who is drastically overpaid. He is a number three man on most teams in the NHL. That being said, there is a huge market for him. There are a quite a few teams who have shown interest. Does Lou agree with Mike in keeping Dion?
I say they have to take advantage of the market and send him packing, and hope to grab some more draft picks to help with the rebuild.
I will say this much: Lou has many contacts. There is no one who does not respect him. His ability to find talent in the college ranks with the best. His experience will be valuable to the Leafs in this rebuild.
The next step is the next step, Is trying to deal with Joffrey Lupul. Lupul has voiced his displeasure in the past. His last year he was okay at times, but most of the year he was either injured or disinterested. In past seasons, he was a twenty goal scorer. He has been a leader and a positive influence in the dressing room.
The major obstacle is a $5.25 million cap hit. Whoever is going to acquire Lupul will want to send some cap back. Good luck with getting a team to take that cap on with no cap coming back. That being said, the Leafs have to get as many assets as possible coming back for him.
The second obstacle is that other teams know he wants no part of a rebuild. They will not throw too many lifelines to him. Basically, they have the Leafs over a barrel and the Leafs know it.
Tyler is basically the Leafs' best asset. He was the Leafs' number one centre most of the year. He was used in all aspects of the game. He was used in powerplays and penalty killing situations.
On most teams, he could be a average second centre. On a very few teams he could be a number one centre. But on every team, at the very least he would an excellent third line centre.
Tyler is not great at any aspect of the game. That being said, he does so many things well. He is a very reliable player who could help many teams.