The Hall-of-Fame player is leaving his position with the Tampa Bay Lightning, so why would he not want to join the best front office management group in the entire league?
Steve Yzerman has had an absolutely astounding career as a player and a somewhat successful career as a GM so far.
Starting in Detroit under Ken Holland, Yzerman developed some knowledge of how to sign old players to contracts with massive no-trade clauses and get stuck with them instead of signing their young talent. An important skill to have.
He was able to move to the Tampa Bay Lightning and have some good prospects that turned into the future core of his team. But what’s really important is what he does now.
Yzerman announced that he would be leaving the Lightning position for family reasons and the speculation in Detroit has gone wild. Most of them assuming that he will return to where he played as a player and started in management, but what they don’t realize is that a much more enticing opportunity is just a few hours away.
The Leafs organization has one of the best reputations around, so even with Kyle Dubas in charge, Yzerman would have a great opportunity to create a Front Office Superteam and absolutely outperform every other team.
Why would he go to Detroit? That team is barren and only have Dylan Larkin to lean on for any excitement. They are dead in the water and will be every single season for the next five years.
Yzerman can win almost immediately and get that chance to lift the cup with the Leafs, while he would never get to do that with the Red Wings. Something that he has been missing with the Lightning is finishing the job – here, he would have the best opportunity to do that before he’s old and gray.
Not only would he get the chance to win, but he already has familiar faces within the Leafs organization. Brendan Shanahan has turned the ship around for the team in Toronto and with his former teammate, they could win the cup as players and as executives together.
Joining his old pal once again, Yzerman would be wise to take this opportunity and run with it. His ego should not be that big that he could be paid the same amount as Detroit’s GM as he would within the Leafs organization. Money is no object to MLSE.
Flexing their financial muscle is no problem for the Leafs, after signing their two best players to contracts with massive signing bonuses, they clearly do not have a problem with spending a load of money up front. Yzerman would cost them, but his expertise would be valuable.
Getting as many hockey minds together could be what eventually wins Toronto their Stanley Cup and puts this whole management team up there with the Canadian Gods.