recently, JD88 stepped down from his tenure as the man that covers the boys in blue and white. I've been asked to step in. If I can post coverage of the Leafs anywhere near JD, I will be proud. JD had 33 pages of posts on the TML, all interesting and insightful. He will be missed, and hopefully give me pointers on my tenure as the leafs writer.
My first post comes on a quiet day. Leafs had a practice and prepared for the Sens. Not too much...except for the Tomas Kaberle era ended today! A daunting task to write about on a first day, but I'll give it my best shot.
In the afternoon today, Tomas Kaberle was traded to the Boston Bruins for Joe Colborne, a 1st round pick in the 2011 draft, and a conditional 2nd rounder in 2012 (Leafs get 2nd rounder if Boston makes finals or Kaberle resigns). With Kaberle's departure, only 1 player on the Leafs played prior to the Burke era, that being Darryl Boyce who played one game as a Marlies call up.
I have been lobbying for Kaberle to be traded for quite some time now. While I thought he was a great player and great person, it was time for our organization to move on. We needed to get younger, Kaberle needed a winning team. But when this trade happened, hit me like a ton of bricks. It finally happened. After 3 years of speculation Tomas Kaberle will not be wearing the blue and white. I'll miss him, and all Leaf fans should too. He was an amazing PP quarterback, a monster passer, and had great awareness. While he never shot, when he did they were accurate shots, that could easily be deflected. Boston gets a fantastic puck moving d-man, something all teams covet.
However, what the Leafs get in return subsides the pain of losing such an outstanding individual. The Leafs get a 1st rounder, and Joe Colborne, a 6'6 center out of University of Denver. He is currently noted as the Bruins best prospect behind Seguin, and has great playmaking ability (is a self noted pass-first player), nice speed, and a big body. While he has not learned how to use his size yet, as he just recently hit a growth spurt, it is believed it will be Burke's priority to get him to utilize his massive size to his advantage. Do not expect him to play this year, but easily be a Leaf in the 2011/12 season.
This is a great deal for both teams, for the reasons stated above. In fact, this trade was better than anything Burke was offered in the summer. However, Leafs are not done after this trade. Burke has mentioned they are in pursuit for a defenseman, and a young forward (or bundle the firsts for a higher first). Burke also said a first line center will not be available on the market before the deadline that can play with Phil, but hopefully Colborne can fit that role next season.
Leafs play Ottawa at home tomorrow, hoping to stretch their current winning streak to 3 games, and close in further to the final playoff spot.
Until next time,