Blog Entry

Brian Burke says Bruins won Phil Kessel trade

Posted on: October 21, 2011 11:39 am

By Brian Stubits

For the rest of time, or at least Brian Burke's tenure in Toronto, the trade he executed to land Phil Kessel from the Bruins will be dissected. If his time in Toronto were up today, there's no doubt it would be his lasting legacy.

The Bruins gave up Kessel at a cost of three draft picks from the Maple Leafs, their first- and second-round selections in the 2010 draft and first pick in the 2011 draft. Those draft slots yielded Tyler Seguin, Jared Knight and Dougie Hamilton for Boston.

Since that trade, it's been all things up for the B's. That's not to say Kessel was the problem in Boston, just that the good times have rolled since the trade and Seguin played a small part in the Bruins capturing the Stanley Cup.

That led Burke to his conclusion as to who actually "won" the trade, from the National Post.

"Peter Chiarelli has a ring. There’s no argument," Burke said before the Leafs lost 6-2 in Boston on Thursday. "Whenever people question whether the trade worked or not, he holds up his right hand and you can’t say anything."

Don't mistake the candor for regret. Burke doesn't have any of that.

“When people ask: Would we make the trade again? I say, 'In a heartbeat,'" Burke said. “I don’t care about the other team. I think Phil is a great player for us and he’s showing it.

“The goals and assists are nice. But he’s been so much more.”

This is why I can't get on board with Burke. I get the sense he's saying it to be humble as well as to put the conversation to rest. It is still impossible to grade this trade accurately. After all, Kessel is on his way to putting up Wayne Gretzky numbers (we just had to include that, ahhhh Leafs fans).

Moreover, the trade didn't directly lead the Bruins to the Cup. As mentioned, only Seguin played a role in Boston's championship.

That didn't stop the Boston faithful from showering Kessel with their appreciation during the game.

I know everybody likes to jump to conclusions on these things quickly. But trades can often take years to fully review. At this point, with Kessel getting off to such a hot start, it's hard to say the Leafs are going to get that short of a short end on the stick. Maybe Hamilton and Knight don't pan out for Boston, You never know. But what we do know is that Kessel has been pretty good for Toronto. Maybe he ends up leading them to a Stanley Cup down the line (hey, it could happen). What then?

So while Burke thinks the decision is already final, only more time will tell.

Hat Tip to Pro Hockey Talk

Photo: Getty Images

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.


Since: Aug 14, 2011
Posted on: October 21, 2011 2:58 pm

Brian Burke says Bruins won Phil Kessel trade

I could understand trading away those picks for a bonafide superstar but for Phil Kessel is laughable. He's a decent player off to a good start but no way was he even close to being worht that much. That's not the only terrific deal Chiarelli has made either. Picking up Horton for basically nothing was another steal. He's one of the best GMs in the game.

Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: October 21, 2011 2:45 pm

Brian Burke says Bruins won Phil Kessel trade

The only way this trade will ever make any sense is if and only if the Leafs compete for a Stanley Cup while Kessel is still on the team. Where Burke can really look stupid is if Kessel leaves the Leafs and signs somewhere else.  Kessel only has 2 more seasons after this one in Toronto and then he becomes an UFA at what is still going to be his prime.  Does Kessel resist free agency?  If so, at least the Leafs will be able to say they had him for most of his career.  If not, it'll become the worst trade I've ever seen in my life by far.   It's already pretty bad but as long as Kessel is scoring goals it's easier to cover up.... if he disappears from Toronto Burke is going to look like a retard.

Since: Feb 12, 2010
Posted on: October 21, 2011 1:37 pm

Brian Burke says Bruins won Phil Kessel trade

HA! To funny. Burke saying that is the equivalent of noticing that the sky is blue on a sunny day.

Since: Mar 12, 2008
Posted on: October 21, 2011 12:34 pm

Brian Burke says Bruins won Phil Kessel trade

lol....This should be good!!!

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