DON’T GET ME STARTED sifted through all the rhetoric after Coach Babcock said NO to the Pegulas and said YES to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Mike Babcock

Art Wander

I will agree that money probably wasn’t an issue since both organizations opened up the vault and said “take all you want.” What then were other reasons? “Family?” – maybe. “Bigger market?” – maybe. You could list several more considerations. Of course – in Buffalo was the attractiveness of the young talent – including Jack Eichel – that makes the locals feel comfortable that Buffalo will get to the playoffs faster than the troubled Leafs.

The bottom line is that Babcock decided on Toronto when many were projecting the coach to be on the Buffalo Sabres bench during the game. So what else may have played a role as to why Babcock spurned Buffalo and will settle in Tonto (my favorite reference to that city.)

In the back of my cranium is what is called due diligence. Was Babcock made aware that the Sabres GM did not consult with popular coach Ted Nolan on trades; player movement; or very little else? As mentioned before, whenever Nolan would praise one of the players – next day they were on their way to another city. Did Babcock ask why the Sabres have little left from the trading of Ryan Miller and Steve Ott? Was Babcock scratching his coconut wondering what happened to Pat LaFontaine?

Did Babcock reflect on his decade in Detroit and close relationship with his GM and maybe figured it wouldn’t be the same with Murray? Did Babcock review the lottery selection and view the response by Murray?

And, finally, did Babcock reflect on his close and personal relationship with the Leafs head guy – Brendan Shanahan, saying ‘I can really work with this guy – he knows how I work and we probably can get the same coach/front office relationship I had in Detroit.”

So – to me – it was a case of which front office guy can Babcock work with – Shanahan or Murray – and it was Shanahan who had the upper hand on the rookie GM of the Buffalo Sabres on Don’t Get Me Started.

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