The Leafs have a couple of key vacancies in the Hockey
Operations Department, and we here at TLN are committed to helping the Leafs
fill those positions. To speed the process along we’ve asked that applicants CC
when they forward their resumes to Brendan Shanahan. The first one we’ve
received is from Mike Futa, who is applying on the General Manager position.
Futa is a strong candidate for this role in that he’s spent
the past 20 years in progressively more significant roles in hockey. He’s quite
new to even the right hand man role, but is coming from what is considered a
very deep front office which produced Ron Hextall as a new GM last summer. Futa’s
experience/inexperience makes him a strong candidate for the committee approach
that Brendan Shanahan has been promoting as the new structure of the Leafs
front office. His strong drafting record is his greatest strength as the Leafs
prepare for the youth movement.
Looking for a Senior role drawing on my experience in
building a two time Stanley Cup winning team with a focus on player
Vice President, Hockey
Operations and Director of Player Personnel of the LA Kings (May 2014- present)
Currently oversees both pro and amateur scouting, and is the principal advisor
to the President of Hockey Operations. Basically, it’s Ron Hextall’s old gig.
Director of Amateur
Scouting for the LA Kings (June 2007- May 2014)
You know that Drew Doughty pick? That was me. I also found Tanner Pearson,
Tyler Toffoli, Wayne Simmonds, Jake Muzzin, and a slew of other homegrown
players that filled out Stanley Cup rosters and gave the GM cap space to pay
for guys like Kopitar, Brown, Richards, and Carter.
General Manager of
the Owen Sound Attack (2002-2007)
Successfully ran the Attack to five playoff bound seasons and was named OHL
Executive of the Year in 2005. Responsible for all aspects of hockey operations
including player and coaching personnel, as well as scouting. Also served as
Ontario U-17 Director, a team that won the gold medal in 2007.
- Two, count ‘em, two Stanley Cup rings
- OHL Executive of the Year in 2005
- Gold Medal with Ontario at the U-17 Tournament
- Captain of the York University Hockey Team
- Time Magazine’s Person of the Year 2006
As a member of the Kings’ front office, I’m going to take partial
credit for flipping Matt Frattin and a couple picks to Columbus for Marion Gaborik. We did, after all, win a Cup right after.
Andrej Sekara is a solid defenseman, but he’s a UFA on a
cash strapped team. We gave up a first round pick and former second round pick Roland McKeown for a rental in a year
that we missed the playoffs.
Best Draft Pick
Picking Doughty after Stamkos was off the boards was a bit
of a no brainer, but is definitely the best pick accredited to this group.
Taking Tanner Pearson as a skilled overager is a bold move that has
significantly paid off and shows great range.
Worst Draft Pick
Fresh out of the OHL, taking Trevor Lewis, a former Owen
Sound Attack player, in the first round is a bit of a stretch. While Lewis has
been a solid NHLer, he’s not the type of player you want to take early in the
draft. Also picking Derek Forbort right ahead of Tarasenko stings a little.
won $87,000 on a 50/50 while scouting a World Junior Game
- Has twins, so understands the importance of
sibling acts like the Stromes or Nylanders.
- Primary residence is in Toronto, which is the
key to successful team management
Hiring Manager’s Notes
Futa is an interesting option, but may require compensation to the Kings. LA has guarded personnel like John Stevens in the past, and kept him from interviewing for head coaching positions, it’s possible they will be equally guarded about Futa, especially since given their cap situation they will require his scouting expertise to find affordable options to support the bloated contracts of Quick, Richards, and Brown.