Hockey Night in Canada's Scott Morrison delivers his insights into the world of hockey, on and off the ice.
Mats Sundin has spoken
Sunday, February 24, 2008 | 10:35 PM ET
By Dan Tavares
Like we said, Mats Sundin was asked if he wanted to go to a Stanley Cup contender.
He was then asked, if the answer to the first question was "Yes," to provide a list of three destinations.
Alas, the first answer was no. End of conversation.
"He is staying," agent J.P. Barry told CBCSports.ca on Sunday night.
Mats Sundin is going nowhere. He will not waive his no-trade clause.
He will either retire a Maple Leaf, or potentially re-sign as one in the summer.
After a night of conversation between Sundin and Barry in Ottawa, it was decided that the Leafs captain will not move on, that he will not become a rental player and pursue a Stanley Cup elsewhere this spring.
The 37-year-old has definitively spoken. He has never liked the idea of leaving Toronto, he has never liked the idea of walking into a playoff run with another team, so he will stay and see what happens with the Leafs.
Now, while Leafs Nation will be full of angst, at least in some corners, if the club continues to lose and gets a high first-round draft pick, they don't need to gut the nucleus to move forward. They could add some futures and keep the present and perhaps retool faster than first thought.
As for Sundin, he had a choice. It wasn't his obligation to leave to help the team gut the operation and rebuild. He took less money to re-sign for another year last summer and was given a no-trade clause as part of the package. So he stays. Live with it. Guys who don't waive their no-trades are not bad guys. They are in some cases loyal guys.
Now, some will wonder what Mats really wants in his hockey life. He could play deep into the spring, but instead is opting to wear blue and white and probably be golfing by the first week of April.
His choice. The rest can debate it.
As for Leafs general manager Cliff Fletcher, he has "No" answers from Sundin, Darcy Tucker and Tomas Kaberle, and is waiting to hear from Bryan McCabe. His job has gotten much more difficult.
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