TORONTO - More than one incoming hockey executive with the Maple Leafs has used Canada Day to try to remake ‘Canada’s Team’.
With new president Brendan Shanahan now having a say in changes under general manager Dave Nonis, here’s a look at how the Leafs tried to use our national birthday to their advantage over the past 15 years, usually with limited success.
n 2013 — No one questioned the value of Nonis adding David Clarkson to a meek lineup after the Boston playoff botch-up, but the cost and term made people antsy. A year later, with such a poor start to the seven-year, $36.75-million deal, those worries have multiplied.
Dave Bolland, acquired via trade, was another good bet coming off a Stanley Cup, but his problem was an early season injury that has clouded his long-term future here. In the days after Clarkson signed, Nonis added four players who helped the organization in unique ways, Trevor Smith, Troy Bodie, Paul Ranger and T.J. Brennan.