Nothing against Leetch, I think he still has some gas in the tank and is worth about 45 points in 65 games this season.
The bottom line in Toronto, however, is they are looking at a 35-win season. Adding Leetch will give them...what...38 wins? So - instead of being WAY out of the playoffs, they want to be just...barely out of them?
Leaf fans - say goodbye to Angelo Esposito, Jakub Voracek, and Logan Couture. It was funny - I commented to a friend with two weeks left last year: "Watch, Toronto will go on this big winning streak and finish one point out of the playoffs - not enough to get in, but just enough to make sure they have the worst draft pick possible." We had a good laugh about that when it actually happened. Now watch it happen again.
This team is determined to swim in the waters of mediocrity. The Leafs are so backwards that it would not surprise me if at some point this season they trade away Justin Pogge and/or Jiri Tlusty (the only parts of the future that is truly promising).
While forward-thinking teams like the Penguins and the Kings build future powerhouses, the Maple Laughs seem hell-bent on finishing 8th or 9th every year.
In the 'new' NHL, if a team squeaks into the playoffs, they have just as much chance of winning the Holy Grail as any other team. That seems to be the Leaf philosophy - eek into the playoffs and hope for the best. In the meantime, this average team continues to frustrate fans as they watch an aging Mats Sundin make a dazzling play to get the puck to a wide open....Alexei Ponikarovsky.
Yes - waste what little precious cap space that you have - cap space, incidentally, that is also currently being wasted on such astute signings as Tie Domi and Ed Belfour - on signing Leetch.
Living in Toronto, I am very happy that I have the NHL Center Ice package. During Leaf nights, I can watch Buffalo or Pittsburgh games instead. You know - teams that actually have a direction.