Fergy looking to future

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:22 AM ET

John Ferguson would welcome the opportunity to be a part of Team Canada's management team again, this time for the upcoming world championship in Halifax and Quebec City.

He'll have plenty of time to lobby his services to Hockey Canada president Bob Nicholson after being relieved of his duties as general manager of the Maple Leafs yesterday.

"I look forward to the new opportunities ahead of me," said Ferguson, who was an assistant to Team Canada general manager Steve Yzerman during Canada's gold-medal winning performance at the worlds a year ago.

Asked about his future in the league, Ferguson replied: "I've had one call and I suspect there will be plenty more. I already have 22 messages on my phone."

During his farewell press conference at the Air Canada Centre yesterday, Ferguson repeated several times that he was "proud of his record" with the Leafs, despite the fact that his team reached the playoffs just once in his 31/2 seasons at the helm.

MLSEL president Richard Peddie didn't share those same fond memories of Ferguson's tenure, stating the outgoing GM "didn't deliver" on his original plan.

Whatever the case, Ferguson was not about to lapse into a piss-and-vinegar saturated tirade about the way he was treated, even when the subject of last summer's search for his so-called "mentor" came up.

Among those considered for the job at the time: Hall of Famer Scotty Bowman and former Ottawa GM John Muckler.

Still, he doesn't deny his shortcomings.

"We did not meet expectations," said Ferguson, who plans to keep living in Toronto. "I am responsible and accountable."


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