For once when asking a question in the header of a post, the answer isn’t no. Unfortunately Leafs fans probably should want the answer to be no, as keeping Laurence Gilman is likely the better outcome for the Leafs.
Yesterday it was announced that John Chayka has left the Coyotes organization. An interesting story unto itself, summarized well by Craig Morgan:
The reasons for that termination are in dispute, however. One NHL source said Saturday that during the NHL season’s pause, Chayka asked the Coyotes for permission to pursue another “another professional opportunity” that was not with another team and had sought his release from the organization about six weeks ago.
But another source said Sunday that this account is not true, and that stance was later corroborated by another league source.
“John Chayka is a liar and a quitter,” the source said.
Getting away from the tire fire that continues to be the Arizona Coyotes, I found myself again looking for the all important “How does this affect the Leafs?” angle, and that has presented itself in the case that can be made for Gilman as the potential replacement for Chayka in Arizona.
The Leafs have given Gilman permission to pursue opportunities previously, and in Elliotte Friedman’s 31 Thoughts, we see that he was considered a front runner for the Devils GM job before they opted to stick with Tom Fitzgerald:
It was reported that the finalists for the Devils’ GM job — which went to Tom Fitzgerald — were Mike Futa and Laurence Gilman. Heard that among other interviewees were Mark Hunter, Colorado’s Chris MacFarland and Ed Olczyk.
Laughing at another Mark Hunter failed job interview aside, there were people in the industry surprised that the Devils didn’t take a longer look at Gilman, a candidate who has shown to embrace statistical analysis, shown contract negotiations to be one of his strengths, and has an extensive resume of being around the game, all aspects that fit with what the Devils are building, and coincidentally, one that allows the Coyotes to begin righting their ship in a more timely way.
Perhaps there have been no bigger fans of Gilman than the Old Guard of Canucks Army, which continually sung his praises…
When it comes to the club’s handling of player contracts, resident “capologist” Laurence Gilman, who is the management team’s “chief negotiator” and is “also responsible for the administration and application of the NHL Collective Bargaining Agreement and the development of the club’s strategic salary cap plan,” has been the driving force. Hiring Gilman away from Phoenix was one of Gillis’ first acts as General Manger (Gilman was hired less than two weeks after Gillis was), and it has worked out to be inarguably one of his shrewdest personnel moves in Vancouver.
What? Did I see hired away from Phoenix in there?
Correct, Laurence Gilman’s hockey resume includes a decade spent in Arizona as a Director of Hockey Operations, VP of Hockey Operations, Assistant General Manager, and as General Manager to their AHL affiliate, San Antonio Rampage.
While Gilman might be over a decade removed from his time spent in Arizona, the situation of the club isn’t entirely different from when he left, nor are the conditions of the market.
It’s hard not to imagine that Gilman is a potential front runner for this job, and the Leafs could find themselves pursuing a new Assistant GM in the future, one that may also need to run the Marlies.