Could Dave Nonis be the next GM of the Maple Leafs?

Current GM Cliff Fletcher has made it very clear that he is only there to keep the seat warm for whoever is chosen to steer the ship, and sources indicate that the Leafs are interested in talking to Nonis about the job.

Paul Maurice got booted yesterday from the head coaching gig in Toronto, but who in their right mind would take the job behind the bench with the knowledge that a new GM could waltz in and make wholesale changes?

Many inside the hockey world assumed that Brian Burke would ride into the big smoke to save the Maple Leafs, but he is committed to remaining in Anaheim for at least one more season. Toronto can ill afford to wait on Burke, as this rudderless franchise needs a new direction right now.

Carolina GM Jim Rutherford had been rumoured to be a favourite of Leafs’ ownership, which is a separate but even more convoluted issue. Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment has proven itself to be a meddling entity lacking in class; remember when CEO Richard Peddie publicly stated he’d made a mistake in hiring former GM John Ferguson Jr. while Ferguson was still on the job? Nonis is eager to get back on the horse, but he has to consider the people he would be dealing with at MLSE.

Whoever does succeed Fletcher in the front office deserves a very lucrative contract in exchange for putting up with the shenanigans that are sure to ensue behind the scenes in the self-proclaimed centre of the hockey universe.

>> The world hockey championships may not get as much attention as the Stanley Cup playoffs, but you won’t find a better line to watch than Canada’s monstrous trio of Dany Heatley, Rick Nash and Ryan Getzlaf.

The combined height and weight of that line is 18-foot-10, 651 lbs and none of those players is afraid of contact. Throw in the fact that all three are extremely skilled offensively and you wonder how anyone can stop them. So far nobody’s been able to; Heatley leads the tourney with 10 points in three games while Nash and Getzlaf have each averaged two points per game.

Just to give you an idea of how dominant these guys have been, TSN’s Pierre McGuire says it might be the best line he’s ever seen at any level. That’s saying something since McGuire was an assistant coach in Pittsburgh when Mario Lemieux and company were winning Stanley Cups.

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