Boston’s road to the Stanley Cup finals was made possible in more ways than one by the Toronto Maple Leafs. Not only did they beat the Leafs in the first-round of the playoffs in seven games, starting goalie Tuukka Rask was a Leafs prospect at one time.
During today’s Media Day talks, Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli was asked about the trade that brought Rask into the Bruins’ fold. His description of how trade talks went down won’t do anything to make Leafs fans feel better.
Chiarelli said the Bruins then interim GM Jeff Gorton did the deal with former Leafs GM John Ferguson, Jr. while Chiarelli was in the process of going to Boston from Ottawa.
Ferguson went to the Bruins desiring then B’s goalie Andrew Raycroft and offered up then Leafs prospect Jiri Tlusty for him. The Bruins insisted the trade be goalie-for-goalie and wanted Rask. On June 24, 2006 the deal was done: Rask for Raycroft straight up.
That sound you hear from Toronto are Leafs fans grinding their teeth over a poor trade from the old regime. To make matters worse, Raycroft was coming off his worst season with Boston and a year removed from winning the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year.
If you haven’t noticed, things aren’t going so hot in Columbus. They’ve already fired Scott Arniel as their coach, they’ve got a host of injuries making life harder, and GM Scott Howson’s job could be in jeopardy come season’s end.
Ottawa Sun writer Bruce Garrioch says that the name that’s being floated around as a potential successor to Howson is John Ferguson Jr. If you’re unaware of who Ferguson is and what his track record was in Toronto, consider this Garrioch’s way of telling you that things can get worse.
Ferguson was the Leafs GM from 2003-2008, a tenure that saw the Leafs make the playoffs in his first year in charge and never again after that. Ferguson was famous (infamous?) for signing veteran players to hefty contracts with no-trade clauses and having a poor drafting history. He’s also the guy that traded Tuukka Rask for Andrew Raycroft. Yikes.
If Ferguson wound up in Columbus, the possibility of seeing things improve would not be very positive given his track record.
It’s just a rumor and Garrioch’s track record with rumors isn’t stellar, but if there are legs to this at all Jackets fans should be demanding better of everyone in charge of the franchise. With how poorly things went under Doug MacLean and now with Scott Howson, seeing Ferguson wind up in the same role would just be another shot in the gut to a fan base that doesn’t have much else left to give.