That sound you're hearing right about ... now, is the Toronto media working itself into a frenzy with the news that Brian Burke, the man they've been longing to take over the Maple Leafs, is now, in theory, a free agent. That's right, the Ducks announced today that Burke is stepping down from his position as General Manager and will be replaced by Bob Murray.
Burke will stay on as a consultant for the rest of the season.
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From Bob McKenzie of TSN:
Sources tell TSN Burke will remain in a senior advisory capacity with the Ducks for now but that the final word on any hockey operations decisions in Anaheim will be made by Murray. Sources say Burke will, in this advisory capacity, have the ability to freely negotiate future employment opportunities as a GM in the NHL. That would pave the way for Burke to be hired as president and GM of the Toronto Maple Leafs in the days, weeks or months ahead, if the Leafs and Burke so desire. And there is strong reason to believe that is precisely what will happen. In any case, it would seem all but certain that Burke will find his way to Toronto as the Leafs' top hockey man.
Previously, Burke has been General Manager of the Hartford Whalers and Vancouver Canucks, while he won a Stanley Cup in the same capacity with the Ducks during the 2006-2007 season.
He also had a ratherhilariousfeud with Oilers General Manager Kevin Lowe, stemming from the fact Lowe signed former Duck, Dustin Penner, to a lucrative offer-sheet -- which Anaheim refused to match -- when he was a restricted free agent following the '06-07 season.
Murray was previously General Manager of the Chicago Blackhawks from 1997 - 1999 and was currently working in the Ducks front office.
Brian Burke Steps Down As Ducks GM; Bob Murray Takes Over originally appeared on NHL FanHouse on Wed, 12 Nov 2008 15:40:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.