Monday, June 20, 2011

New Maple Leaf assistant coaches set off a new round of speculation

GM Brian Burke announced that assistant coaches Keith Acton and Tim Hunter have not been retained, and that former New York Islanders Coach Scott Gordon and former Northeastern University coach Greg Cronin have been added to the staff.

There is much speculation on how to read this surprise move. I have a number of theories but they could all wrong.

1, Since Ron Wilson's contact runs out in June 2012 there is considerable speculation that Gordon and Cronin are being groomed to one day take over. It is being suggested by some that Burke did all the hiring and firing on this one.

2. Since the Maple Leaf powerplay and penalty killing are so weak, one theory has it that Acton and Hunter too the fall for this one.

3. Cronin and Gordon are friend of Wilson's so their hiring could be construed to be that Wilson is very secure.

4. This was your classic shuffling of chairs on the deck of the Titanic which means read in nothing.

5. Since both Cronin and Gordon are Americans, there is a theory that Burke and Wilson are attempting to turn the entire franchise over to the Yankees.

These theories may be all wrong. But one thing we do know is that Burke is in no hurry to offer an extension to Wilson. Another slow start will land Wilson in the unemployment line.

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