Jan 9, 2013, 1:56 PM EST
As reported earlier, Brian Burke has been fired as president and general manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Burke era began in 2008 and spanned 305 games, with a record of 128-135-42 and zero playoff appearances.
Those are the numbers, but this story is about more.
Much, much more.
Let’s take a look back at some of Burke’s most memorable moments in Tronna.
It’s hard to know exactly where to start. Burke was a perpetual mover and shaker during his time in Toronto, making over 40 trades in what amounted to a total roster overhaul.
But the signature move of Burke’s wheeling and dealing was the Kessel trade, in which Boston netted two first-round picks that would become Tyler Seguin and Dougie Hamilton.
It was his boldest and most contentious move, one that will continue to be referenced well into Dave Nonis’ tenure.
“We require, as a team, proper levels of pugnacity, testosterone, truculence and belligerence,” Burke told the media upon being hired in 2008. “That’s how our teams play.”
It’s the line that stuck with Burke throughout his time in Toronto.
While the strategy reaped huge rewards in Anaheim — Burke won a Cup with a roster featuring Shawn Thornton, Travis Moen, George Parros, Sean O’Donnell and Brad May — it never came to fruition with the Leafs.
The likes of Colton Orr, Mike Brown, Garnet Exelby and Jay Rosehill were acquired in an ill-fated effort to get tough and, in perhaps his most egregious “tough” signing, Burke shelled out $22.5 million for Mike Komisarek.
“He’s a respected competitor in this league,” Burke said upon signing Komisarek. “We know that he will bring his hard-nosed approach to our team on a consistent basis.”
Komisarek only appeared in 45 games last year and was often a healthy scratch.
Today, he’s mostly mentioned as an amnesty buyout candidate.
Burke was nothing if not combative during his four-plus years on the job. Fights, feuds and potential fisticuffs were constant:
– He said the Penguins were good because they “won a goddamn lottery“
– He wanted to rent a barn to stage a fist fight between him and Kevin Lowe
Say what you will about the job he did, or the way he conducted himself — the NHL is going to be less interesting now that Brian Burke’s no longer a part of it.
Dec 20, 2013, 11:12 PM EST
The latest round in one of the league’s great rivalries.
Dec 20, 2013, 10:54 PM EST
Winnipeg beat Florida 5-2.
Dec 20, 2013, 10:19 PM EST
The Rangers lost to the Islanders 5-3 on Friday.
Dec 20, 2013, 10:02 PM EST
He had about 100 loved ones on hand in New Jersey.
Dec 20, 2013, 9:48 PM EST
He managed the feat in 634 games.
Dec 20, 2013, 9:17 PM EST
A little improvement everyday for St. Louis’ captain.
Dec 20, 2013, 8:38 PM EST
His game misconduct hasn’t been rescinded, though.
Dec 20, 2013, 8:14 PM EST
They’re marketing it as “Back in Black.”
Dec 20, 2013, 7:53 PM EST
Reports indicate there was knee-to-knee contact with Mark Fistric.
Dec 20, 2013, 7:22 PM EST
The Bruins forward’s argument lasted five hours, per TSN’s Darren Dreger.
Dec 20, 2013, 6:39 PM EST
The Predators insist there haven’t been setbacks, though.
Dec 20, 2013, 5:12 PM EST
“It’s just going to take time,” said general manager Don Maloney.
Dec 20, 2013, 5:09 PM EST
“The replay shows I’m trying to get out of the way.”
Dec 20, 2013, 4:31 PM EST
“I think last night’s game is going to stick with me for a while,” coach Todd Richards said.
Dec 20, 2013, 4:07 PM EST
The play of 19-year-old Olli Maatta has helped the Penguins keep rolling.
Dec 20, 2013, 3:56 PM EST
“We didn’t have a belief we could prove it beyond a reasonable doubt,” said a Denver DA spokesperson.
Dec 20, 2013, 3:51 PM EST
Also, Dan Girardi’s acting skills.
Dec 20, 2013, 3:26 PM EST
Leafs haven’t done well since the start of 24/7.
Dec 20, 2013, 3:06 PM EST
Should be in Saturday to face Toronto.
Dec 20, 2013, 2:42 PM EST
James van Riemsdyk scored on Mike Smith… we think.
- Video: Ovechkin becomes sixth fastest player to 400 goals in Caps win 3
- TGIF: Five NHL games to watch this weekend 14
- Assault charges against Varlamov dropped 31
- Carlyle on HBO presence: ‘It’s not normal what we’re living right now’ 5
- Orpik: First days after Thornton attack were ‘miserable’ 69
- Video: Dustin Brown ejected for kneeing, Tomas Hertl won’t return (update) 64
- No supplemental discipline for Caps’ Wilson 32
- Habs healthy scratch Briere for first time this season 7
- Chiarelli says he’s not trading Marchand 21
- Schenn to play tonight; Oates maintains Wilson hit was ‘totally clean’ 54
- Updated: NHL suspends Thornton 15 games for Orpik attack (155)
- Reports: Thornton will appeal 15-game suspension (107)
- Lucic addresses fight video, says he’s ‘disgusted and outraged’ by Vancouver (103)
- Cam Neely questions length of Thornton’s suspension (78)
- Video: Penguins defeat Leafs, Bortuzzo called for illegal hit to head (71)