A couple nights ago, Sportsnet Magazine’s Gare Joyce reported that the Leafs’ Dave Morrison – head of amateur scouting – was to be let go by his new boss, Lou Lamoriello. Eventually it came out in the wash that Morrison hadn’t been notified of such a move, and Joyce stepped back a little on his initial claim to clarify that the team would perhaps be shuffling chairs instead. Turns out the latter is true, and Morrison will stay on board to make a change to pro scouting.
In other Leaf developments, club confirms Dave Morrison has changed jobs from head of amateur to head of pro scouting.
— Lance Hornby (@sunhornby) July 28, 2015
Morrison has been with the club in an amateur scouting capacity since the early 2000s, and has headed up that department since 2006. To go from draft picks to overseeing the pro scouts seems a bit surprising, and it adds some fuel to the idea that the Leafs’ new general manager, Lamoriello, might bring aboard his pal David Conte to take over Morrison’s old gig.
Conte had held down the scouting director job with the Devils for most of Lamoriello’s time in New Jersey, and after the Leafs’ big hire last week, indicated he might be interested in joining his former boss.
“I’d be lying if I said it didn’t cross my mind,” Conte told the Toronto Sun in remarks published Saturday. “… I’m interested in working. I still have to take stock (of my life). I’m not used to having time off. I’ve done this a long time.”
This is somewhat concerning since Conte’s draft record in recent years hasn’t been particularly impressive and, like Lou, he’s well up there in age and likely falls into the trap of old-school thinking. It’s especially troubling to consider this type of move could undercut Mark Hunter, who has gained plenty of trust from the fanbase after a great draft just a month ago.
It will be interesting to see how this shakes out, because you can bet there’s more news to come.