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Poll: Leafs fans are pessimistic about the future

Mar 26, 2012, 11:53 AM EDT

Sad Leafs fan

Only 23 percent of Torontonians think the Maple Leafs are on the right track under the guidance of general manager Brian Burke, according to a new poll.

Respondents were reached by telephone from March 17-18, at which point Toronto sat 12th in the Eastern Conference. So given the Leafs were in seventh place around two months before then, it might’ve been an unfair time to take the temperature of the fans. (We actually wonder if “slammed down the phone after asking if this was some sort of sick joke” went in the “on the wrong track” category, or if a definitive answer was required.)

At any rate, the results fly in the face of what Burke and company have been saying (selling?) – that the Leafs are a young club, these things take time, the fans need to be patient, please stop chanting for people to be fired, etc.

Toronto has six games left, including four at the ACC where the home team hasn’t won since Feb. 6.

  1. govtminion - Mar 26, 2012 at 11:59 AM

    I really thought this year was it, this was the one where Toronto returned to the playoffs. Maybe not a high berth, probably not a deep run, but finally a return to respectability.

    Nope. And it’s sad, really- as bad as it sounds, I miss the rivalry with the Bruins. I grew up hating the Leafs and Habs because that’s what a Bruins fan does, right? (And the Rangers, of course). And now, both Canadian teams are just awful. It feels hollow- I can’t hate them when things are like this. Here’s hoping that both improve very soon- I miss the hate, and we only play Vancouver a couple of times a year to ease the pain. ;)

    • kitshky - Mar 26, 2012 at 4:41 PM

      Vancouver and Toronto should play at least 4 times a year.

  2. disp350 - Mar 26, 2012 at 12:24 PM

    This is not meant to be a dig at anyone from the Leafs – fans or members of the organization. Can someone honestly answer how it is possible that a team that last won a cup in 1967 has not even made it back to a Stanley Cup Final since then? I understand that during the Ballard years that things were a lot crazy around there and I can accept that as an excuse. But what about since then? And now – 8 straight years without making the playoffs for a team that resides in the center of the NHL universe? I feel for all the fans. I don’t like to compare, but I live in the Philly area and am a lifelong Flyers fans. I have nothing to brag about since we have not won a cup since 1975. But they have at least been to the finals 6 times since then and now we have made the playoffs the last 16 out of 17 seasons. Except for the one 5 year stretch in late 80’s/early 90’s, the team is always competitive. Yes, we have one of the few teams with the same owner (and a fabulous one at that), but he is always willing to make the commitment to try and win. With the millions of Leaf fans, how is it possible that this organization has failed them for 45 years now? Someone please come up with an answer that makes some sense!

    • bcisleman - Mar 26, 2012 at 12:50 PM

      Its no accident that the Leafs last won the Cup when the NHL had its first expansion. During the Original 6 era, there were so few teams that it was relatively easy to monopolize talent and rebuild.

      Since expansion, the only proven method of rebuilding is to slowly rebuild through the draft. In that sense, Burke is right. The problem is that he came into town with the false promise of a quick turn around.. The Leafs and their fans have been looking for shortcuts that do not exist. Burke blew his chance to speed up the rebuild with the Kessel trade. He could have added three studs to his core. Its going to take longer now and I am not convinced that Burke is the guy that can do it.

    • alecitrullo10 - Mar 26, 2012 at 12:57 PM

      Its because ownership doesnt really care. They are content being on of the most profitable teams in the league, and thats without making the playoffs. They know that no matter how bad they team gets people like me will still go to the games, buy the jerseys and support them no matter what. They seem to take serious advantage of the loyalty of us leaf fans. It is truly pathetic how bad this team has become.

      Sincerely,
      Fed up Leafs Fan

    • carfix2000ca - Apr 12, 2012 at 1:36 PM

      Read this

      http://www.chapters.indigo.ca/books/Why-The-Leafs-Still-Suck-Al-Strachan/9781443408462-item.html?cookieCheck=1

  3. raleik - Mar 26, 2012 at 12:25 PM

    Honestly, this year could have been the Leafs’ year if they stuck with one goalie. Reimer has shown potential, and I think could be a solid option for them. But, that’s only if he doesn’t have to worry about being pulled after every poor game he plays. They really need to consider that during the off season and either choose one of their two goalies to be designated the official starter, or bring in a new goalie to replace the both of them.

  4. habsman - Mar 26, 2012 at 1:01 PM

    How can you hate a team that hasn’t bothered anybody in 45 years?

    • kitshky - Mar 26, 2012 at 4:39 PM

      Honestly, I agree! It’s part of my DNA to hate on Toronto … but now I just kinda feel bad for em.

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