Quinn speaks up ... through statement

TERRY KOSHAN -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 9:01 AM ET

Pat Quinn provided members of the media with thoughtful analysis nearly every day during his tenure with the Maple Leafs, but yesterday let the door close with little to offer.

A week after he was fired from his job as coach of the Leafs, Quinn issued a statement through his representatives, saying it was not an appropriate time to personally meet with the media.

About the only intriguing bit in the release was that of the lengthy list of people Quinn thanked in the Leafs organization -- one that included Larry Tanenbaum, Ken Dryden, Bill Watters and even general manager John Ferguson, among others -- the name of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment Ltd. president Richard Peddie was absent.

"The team is moving in a new direction, and my departure should not distract in any way from the challenge facing the team and the organization," Quinn said. "A press gathering would not assist that process. It is also a time for personal privacy."

That being said, Marc Crawford, fired two days earlier by the Vancouver Canucks, held a news conference yesterday. However, it's possible Quinn did not want to do the same for fear he would let the world know what he truly felt. Speaking of Vancouver, it now appears doubtful Quinn will wind up with the Canucks, who could promote Alain Vigneault from the American Hockey League's Manitoba Moose. And though his name has been put into the Los Angeles Kings coaching hat, new Kings general manager Dean Lombardi is expected to go with a younger coach.

Quinn, 63, relished his time in Toronto, but lamented the inability to coach the Leafs to a Stanley Cup.

"The goal at every training camp every year was to win the Stanley Cup,"Quinn said. "(Not winning) does not diminish the feelings I have about my seven seasons and eight years overall here in Toronto. I was genuinely optimistic every year and believed we had teams that could go a long way.

"I believed in our group this past season as well."

Quinn also singled out ex-chairman Steve Stavro and three players -- Mats Sundin, Tie Domi and Tomas Kaberle.


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