Wilson out, Carlyle in as Leafs shuffle deck

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Coaching the Maple Leafs was in Ron WIlson's blood. He will work again.

There is a rule when a coach gets fired.

Write about the new guy. The guy heading out the door is known all too well.

The new guy is Randy Carlyle, in case you haven’t heard.

Indulge me for writing about the old guy.

Ron Wilson will work again. It’s in his blood.

He’s a father, a brother, a grandfather and a husband and he is Larry Wilson’s son and Johnny Wilson’s nephew.

Ron Wilson is  a hockey guy the way a Kennedy ...

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Let’s Lose The Whole American/Canadian Angle

When LA winger Dustin Brown’s name hit the rumour mill, all eyes were raised toward Brian Burke.

Brown seems perfect. He hits, he scores, he plays bigger than his six-feet.

Most important, he’s from Ithaca, New York.

He’s American.

Buffalo-born and bred Jim Kelley remains a towering figure in hockey journalism, a business that has yet to produce a successor for a reporter who filed a story on his last day on earth, Nov 30, 2010.

He loved Canadians and this country but sometimes shuddered at our provincialism.

“Hockey is Canada’s gift to the ...

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Phaneuf Has Been Burke’s Pillar

When Brian Burke traded for Dion Phaneuf on January 31, 2010, he risked very little.

What he gained was the pillar on which every other acquisition has been positioned.

The players who went to Calgary, Jamal Mayers, Matt Stajan, Ian White and Nik Hagman were going to go somewhere. Ex-Leafs litter the NHL. Nikolai Kulemin, Mikhail Grabovski and Luke Schenn are the only holdovers from when Burke signed on three years ago Tuesday.

Ask Burke about the key moments in his time with the Leafs and he will start with January 31, 2010.

Phaneuf’s career had stalled in Calgary. Always a ...

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Burke’s Generous Donation

Toronto Maple Leafs president and general manager Brian Burke has donated a horse to the Toronto Police Service Mounted unit.

Burke inquired earlier this year about donating a horse and when he was told that his generosity would be accepted, the name which he decided to call the horse was Moose.

“I figured there had to be story behind that name and, when he told me, I was blown away,” S/Insp. Bill Wardle, the Mounted and Police Dog Services unit commander told the Toronto Police Services.

Moose was the nickname that ...

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Burke Feels Goalies Need To Be Protected

Brian Burke’s oft-blustery vibe hides a fundamental element of his nature.

At heart, he is conservative.

Take the NHL general manager’s meeting, convened Tuesday at a Toronto airport hotel.

There were two hot-button issues. One was the Milan Lucic hit on Buffalo’s Ryan Miller that drew no suspension from director of player safety Brendan Shanahan.

Burke understands the impact of losing your number one goalie. The Leafs were cruising along at 4-1-1 when James Reimer was hit by the Canadiens Brian Gionta. Since then they have gone 6-5-0 and the team’s goal against average has jumped ...

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