Brian Burke

Three years and counting for Burke in Toronto

Brian Burke and the Toronto Maple Leafs are celebrating their three-year anniversary today. Hopefully he made reservations at a nice restaurant.

If anything, Burke has been busy in three years as general manager in Toronto. In no particular order, he’s acquired Phil Kessel and Dion Phaneuf in separate blockbuster trades, drafted Nazem Kadri, signed Mike Komisarek, signed Clarke MacArthur, signed François Beauchemin, traded Beauchemin for Joffrey Lupul and Jake Gardiner, traded Tomas Kaberle, traded for John-Michael Liles, signed Tim Connolly – basically he changed the entire team except for Luke Schenn, Mikhail Grabovski and Nikolai Kulemin.

One thing Burke hasn’t done in Toronto is make the playoffs, though he’s got his best chance to change that in 2011-12. After 24 games, the Leafs are 14-8-2, five points clear of ninth place in the Eastern Conference.

The long-range outlook for the Leafs remains fuzzy, however. Despite its strong start, Toronto remains a long shot to win a Stanley Cup. And having traded two lottery picks (Tyler Seguin and Dougie Hamilton) for Kessel, the prospect pool, while deeper than past years, is short on elite talent. With so many key Leafs set to become unrestricted free agents in the next couple of years, it’s possible their window could close before it’s had a real chance to open.

Then again, it’s not like Burke will be sitting around doing nothing until then. If he can make a move he thinks will improve the team, he’ll make it. That much is clear.

Silfverberg is set to practice again after Torres hit

Jakob Silfverberg
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Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.

The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.

The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:

That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.

Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:

Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.

Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.

Report: Sean Avery was arrested last week

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From the Southampton Press:

Sean Avery, the former National Hockey League player, was arrested by Southampton Village Police last week on two criminal charges.

According to authorities, Mr. Avery was arrested September 30 following a routine traffic stop on Jennings Avenue in the village at about 4:09 p.m. He was charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief and two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, all misdemeanors.

Police said the criminal mischief charge involved an incident the day before, when Mr. Avery allegedly threw objects at passing vehicles.

As for those counts of possession, according to the newspaper, Avery was found to have “two prescription drugs, acetaminophen with oxycodone and roxicodone.”

He was released on $500 bail and ordered to appear in court at a later date.

Did we mention he’s supposed to get married this weekend?

H/t Gawker