That was an incredible playoff game last night wasn't it? Truculence and tenacity every shift, the character guys making all the difference while the skill guys attacked and the goalies made great saves.
How fitting that Burke was on the radio today talking about his new assistant GM and answering questions about his immediate plans for a hockey club that he intends to build very much like the two teams now in the finals. Give or take a few superstar forwards, of course.
Mostly he talked about Kaberle.
Now, nobody thinks Kaberle is going to fetch a Toews or Kane and help Toronto become the Hawks overnight, but Burke did confirm there are two teams who have given him a rough idea of who they might send over for Thomas as a starting point in discussions. That's basically all Burke would say. He then followed that up with his now very well-rehearsed speech that only a great deal will do the trick and that they would be more than happy to keep him... but does anybody really believe that anymore?
Lets face the facts here though. Kaberle is gone if a good deal comes along. And while the dream of a blow-the-doors-off return has probably passed as the odometer on Kaberle's contract has clicked down to a single season remaining on it, Burke may still get himself a solid 25-goal power forward if another team decides that their blue line is only complete with a guy like Kaberle on it.
It will be interesting to see what kinds of deals present themselves once teams sign their pending UFA's and RFA's and all the cap issues teams annually face come boiling to the surface. It's here that the best opportunity for Toronto to get a special player back for Kaberle probably lies, although it might take more than just Kaberle to get something substantial done. While Toronto don't have a crop of sure-fire star prospects coming up the pipeline, there are some very interesting players that other teams might have a bit of a liking for and before you know it Toronto has a player we can all get excited about.