In an article earlier today, Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star spent some time outlining what Toronto Maple Leafs’ fans might expect from the team’s new general manager (GM) Brad Treliving. To do so, he looked back at Treliving’s track record with the Calgary Flames.
It was such an informative article that I thought it was worth using as the topic of my post today for anyone who hasn’t yet read it. What Treliving does will be especially crucial for Maple Leafs’ fans and the team.
What Maple Leafs’ Fans Should Expect from GM Treliving
Expectation Number One: Expect Treliving to Have Active Involvement in Trade Discussions
Treliving is known for being actively engaged in trade conversations. He explores all possibilities to improve the team. He leaves no stone unturned when it comes to finding out about available players, their prices, and potential trade partners.
Expectation Number Two: Expect Treliving to Be Patient and Balanced
Treliving is reputed to be a GM who balances being cautious with being aggressive. He doesn’t rush into making moves or re-signing free agents but takes a patient approach to assess the situation and make calculated decisions. That said, the needs of the Maple Leafs are exceedingly in win-now mode. Will that change?
Expectation Number Three: Expect Treliving to Have a Hands-on and Proactive Management Style
Treliving is characterized as a doer. He actively involves himself in all aspects of hockey operations. He isn’t afraid to take action and make necessary changes to improve the team. He’s known for having a macro and long-term view of the business and for building relationships.
Expectation Number Four: Expect Treliving to Delegate Challenges
Treliving might face challenges in delegating responsibilities in Toronto. The Maple Leafs’ staff is huge, and he’s not used to that. However, that might turn out to be helpful. He’d have more people to turn to for insight and potential advice. In Calgary, he managed a team with a smaller staff in the past. The upside is that it has equipped him to gain a wider grasp of different areas of hockey operations.
Expectation Number Five: Expect Treliving to Have a Middling Record and Drafting
Treliving’s draft and overall record as the GM of the Calgary Flames is mixed. The Flames made the playoffs five times in nine seasons under his leadership; however, they did not get beyond the second round. Onlookers consider his drafting record so-so. He made some successful picks but lost on others.
Expectation Number Six: Expect Treliving to Be Conservative in Free Agency
Treliving has been conservative in free agency. He typically does not hand out many high-value contracts to new players. Instead, he focuses on staying within the salary cap limits, utilizing organizational talent, and only filling gaps with free agents.
Expectation Number Seven: Expect Treliving to Be Willing to Trade Core Pieces
Treliving has been willing to trade core players if necessary. He’s received valuable assets in return and hasn’t feared making bold moves. That said, he’s like all NHL GMs. Not all trades work out well.
Expectation Number Nine: Expect Treliving to Correct His Mistakes
Treliving has been willing to acknowledge and correct his mistakes. Although not every move has been successful, he has the ability to learn from errors and make necessary adjustments is a positive trait.
The Bottom Line
How will these traits and characteristics that he developed in the Calgary market translate to the Maple Leafs’ market? They are two different places. We will soon see.