DavidPratt_ wrote:let's get one thing very, very clear. Brian Burke as GM of the Vancouver Canucks won ONE playoff round in his history as GM. ONE ROUND. Furthermore, the 'Brian Burke' legacy (ie. the team that just got knocked out of the playoff race) is largely a 'Brian Burke Team'. That would explain in many ways why we won't be watching Vancouver in the playoffs THIS SPRING.
Brian was very good at giving himself a pat on the back for all the 'culture restoration' and exciting teams the Canucks fielded, but let's face facts.
1. Where the team consistently struggled, Brian was unable to make changes. Despite average NHL goaltending, Burke refused to trade Cloutier.
2. Brian was overly loyal to the 'core' - the same core that just let down Canucks fans a few days ago. When there were opportunities to shake up the team for being inconsistent, Burke made cosmetic changes, but not the big ones that made the team into a consistent PLAYOFF threat.
3. When Brian took over the team he had Markus Naslund, Todd Bertuzzi and assets such as Bure, Mogilny and even Messier on the team. In other words, he wasn't starting from ground zero like he inherited an expansion team (you know, like the Minnesota Wild team that knocked out Vancouver in the 2002/2003 playoffs)
4. Thanks to Dave Cobb and trades that Mike Keenan made (Linden for Bertuzzi and Mcabe) it wasn't that hard for Burke to restore the team to where it was (pre-1994-95).
5. Brian Burke's drafting record with the Canucks was abysmal. Outside of the move to get the Sedins, the team has NOT flourished with prospects who are drafted and developed within the Canuck organization. Out of 30 NHL teams, the Canucks rank 26th in terms of prospects by Hockey's Future Magazine: http://hockeysfuture.com/article.php?sid=8549
Face facts, Brian did a DECENT job as GM here, but based on the team's playoff record and the 'Brian Burke team' that just got knocked out of the playoffs, you can forget about the monument of Burkie being built outside of GM place. Those monuments are only built for Stanley Cup WINNERS.
What a pile of crap. This is the same b.s. that your idiot namesake spews on Vancouver local radio. Brian Burke did MORE than a decent job as Vancouver GM, despite what pinheads like Gallagher and Pratt would have people believe.
The sensible way to guage the success of Burke's run in Vancouver is to compare it to what we had before he arrived ... not to what has happened this season.
Before Burke, the hockey culture in Vancouver was ebbing. With Burke's arrival came an improved coaching staff, a more exciting style of play, a team that played its guts out and outworked opponents without trapping, and a commitment to the fans, city, and local charities.
Canuck drafting under Burke was not stellar, but certainly not abysmal. The Sedins are legitimate stars, Kessler is a keeper, Umberger is starting to show why the Canucks picked him in the first round.
Most Canuck trades under Burke were successful. In the long run, we came out ahead in the Jovo trade, the Salo trade, the Malik trade, the Cloutier trade, the Auld trade, the trade that enabled us to get both Sedins, and I would argue that the trade to get Linden and his leadership back was well worth it too.
Before Burke, the building had many empty seats on game night with the team was losing millions every season, the team played disspirited hockey, and the Canucks' fortunes were not something we lived and died with.
After Burke's hiring, the team began playing exciting hockey, the building and seasons tickets have been sold out for years, and the passion for hockey was back in Vancouver like never before.
People forget that the season before Burke arrived, the Canucks finished second last in the entire league. No one could turn around a mess like that over night, but the team still rebounded for a remarkable turn-around in 2000, made the playoffs in 2001, became an elite team in 2002, had their best season in franchise history in 2003, and finally won the Northwest Division title from the powerhouse Avalanche.
In terms of Burke's loyalty to Cloutier and to the core during his time here ... this is seen as a flaw mostly by pinhead newspaper columnists and radio show hosts who constantly call for heads to roll and for the team to be blown up ... but many others would argue that there is good reason to be loyal to a group that is putting up 100 point seasons, contending and winning the division, and getting closer and closer to being cup favourites. If you see this is as a strong shortcoming of Burke's work, then your views are close to your namesake's. That pinhead, Pratt, is always the first to PANIC and overreact with rants about shipping guys out of town whenever the team loses more than two games in a row.
Note that we're talking about Burke's time in Vancouver and not what he's done in the months since he's been in Anaheim (although I would argue that he's also done a good job there so far; recognizing his assets, have the foresight to sign Selanne, hiring a strong coach, having the balls to sign this year's probable Norris winner, and stripping out a lot of an underachieving veteran core while at the same time improving the team).
Another one of Burke's strengths was his intense loyalty to players like Linden and Bertuzzi when attacked by media like Tony Gallagher and others on Vancouver local radio John "the beast" Connor and David Pratt. I cheered when he stood up for Bertuzzi after the Moore incident when TV guys were going to Todd's house and interviewing neighbours. This is a guy you want in the trenches with you when things get tough.
It's true enough that Burke is not close to having a monument erected in memory of work as GM during his time here, but give your head a shake. This is silly point to argue about because no GM will ever get a statue. Burke did a fine job in Vancouver and he is missed (despite what local media hacks have to say).