As you may have heard by now, I just finished polling multiple Toronto Maple Leafs fans about the current state of the team, and what they thought was best for the team.
Some of the results were shocking, while others were certainly expected, sometimes unanimous. Twelve fans responded; here is what they said:
Question one: Should the Maple Leafs fire Ron Wilson?
Results Yes – 10; No – 2
With well over half of the people surveyed saying Maple Leafs head coach Ron Wilson should be fired and just two saying he should stay, the response to the first question is not very surprising.
Wilson, 55, is thought to be too old to coach one of the youngest teams in the league by many people. So far, that theory has proven to be true; the Maple Leafs currently sit 12th in the Eastern Conference, seven points out of a playoff spot.
Questions two: Should Phil Kessel be traded?
Results: Yes – 0; No – 12
One of two things happened for the second question: no annoyed and/or frustrated fans responded to it or Maple Leafs fans are not the people they are sometimes portrayed to be; careless and self-centred.
With 22 goals and a minus-21 rating in 59 games this season, many Leafs fans haven’t exactly been “nice” to Phil Kessel.
He has scored 54 goals and 42 assists for a total of 96 points in 129 games for the Leafs since coming to Toronto, leading many fans to place a lot of blame on Kessel, who was acquired from the Boston Bruins for two first round draft picks and a second round draft pick in 2009.
Questions three: Should the Maple Leafs trade Luke Schenn if that means acquiring a 90-point player?
Results: Yes – 1; No – 11
There is really no surprise with this response. General manager Brian Burke has stated over and over again that he will not trade Luke Schenn, even though he has received many decent offers for him.
Question four: How many more seasons will it take for the Maple Leafs to make the playoffs? (Participants were told to choose one)
Options: a) They will make the playoffs next season.
b) Two more seasons (2012-2013)
c) Three more seasons (2013-2014)
d) Four more seasons (2014-2015)
e) More than four seasons.
Results: a) – 8; b) – 4; c), d) & e) – 0
I will say it now: I should have included a sixth option that said “They will make the playoffs this season.” Unfortunately, I thought of that after sending out the questions.
Without that sixth option, more than 50 percent of the fans I surveyed said that they think the Maple Leafs will make the playoffs next season. This doesn’t come as much of a surprise seeing that the Maple Leafs have made great strides this season as a team, and as individual players.
The Leafs sit seven points out of a playoff spot after 59 games.
Question five: Should the Maple Leafs focus on…
Options: a) Re-building
b) Making the playoffs this season
Results: a) – 11; b) – 1
When Brian Burke was hired by the Maple Leafs as their new general manager, he planned on building his team through free agency and trading rather than the draft. During the summer of 2009, Burke successfully signed free agents such as Francois Beauchemin and Mike Komisarek. This was part of his plan to quickly fix the Maple Leafs and contend for the Stanley Cup.
Recently, Burke has traded key assets Francois Beauchemin, Kris Versteeg and Tomas Kaberle in three separate trades. In return, he has received five draft picks (including two first round picks), two top-notch prospects and just one proven NHL player. All signs point towards a long, full-fledged re-build.
Questions six: On a scale of one to ten (one being the least, ten being the most) how confident are you in the Maple Leafs?
Results: 2, 5, 6, 6, 6, 7, 7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 10
Since the results were not submitted and posted all on the same day, this question is not very accurate. With that being said, I won’t say too much about it.
However, I will say that I am shocked to see that more than 50 percent of the fans who participated in this survey said that their confidence in the Maple Leafs is a seven or higher on a scale of one to ten.
Thank you once again to everyone who took part in this survey.
Follow me on Twitter @LukasHardonk for more Maple Leafs coverage, including news, rumours and game updates.