Archive for June 21st, 2012

Kids say darndest things

- June 21st, 2012

Reporters covering the Maple Leafs often get coy or conflicting answers from the players, making it hard to get a read on them.
The team brass had its own challenges the past few weeks interviewing a number of potential junior first round candidates.
“(Amateur scouting director) Dave Morrison and his group were pretty focused on this after it became clear we’d get a very high pick,” said executive vice president Dave Nonis. “You can narrow it down if you’re picking (fifth overall), but in the top 20s it’s harder, you’re looking at such a wide spectrum.
“They did a good job, going out, bringing the boys in (to the Leafs’ training facility in Etobicoke) and in terms of their talent assessment, character assessment and speaking to the appropriate people. I think we put the appropriate time in.”
During the NHL scouting combine earlier this month, the Leafs chatted up the players and had them interviewed by team psychologists and examined doctors. It’s info the Leafs can use down the road, even if they don’t pick them.
“I visited them, did some physical testng and went to their training centre,” said Czech forward Radek Faksa, ranked in the middle of the first round. “It was very beautiful. All the guys were very nice to me.”
Faksa will have one regret if picked by the Leafs, that he won’t see the departed Tomas Kaberle. Faksa joined the OHL Kitchener Rangers a year too late to see the defencman before he was traded.
“I was sad last year that nobody Czech was playing in Toronto,” Faksa said. “Maybe I will go to Toronto where there are Czech people. But there are many nice people in Kitchener, many Czech people. They invite home me for dinner.”