Monday, July 6, 2009

Leafs sign Beauchemin, but miss out on the big prize

Chris Durno doing what he does best:
blocking somebody's view.
Today is a sad day for Leafs nation.

The news came via a tweet from James Mirtle:
Avalanche signed forwards David Jones, Chris Durno, Darren Haydar, Matt Hendricks and Brian Willsie, along with goaltender Tyler Weiman.
So this is what it feels like when a dream dies.

The backstory: Two months ago, while breaking down the Denis Savard/Gary Leeman fight, I noted a small boy who blocks the camera with his #8 "Durno" Leafs jersey. Thanks to some google research, and timely help from some Durno-connected DGB readers, we were able to confirm that it was eight-year-old future Colorado Avalanche farmhand Chris Durno.

The groudswell was immediate, with Leafs Nation rising up as one and demanding that Brian Burke sign Durno to a minor league deal when he became a free agent in the summer. A "Bring Chris Durno to Toronto" facebook group quickly swelled to over 10,000 members, or almost certainly would have if I had bothered to create one.

We naturally assumed that Burke would listen to the outcry, since as we know he's kind of sensitive about what gets said about him online.

But apparently it was not to be. Burke was too busy building a 2009-10 roster consisting entirely of defenceman to close a deal. And after what we can only assume was a furious bidding war, the Avalanch re-signed Durno today.

In other news, the Leafs signed Francois Beauchemin. Or, as he will be known from this point on: Francois "Not Durno" Beauchemin.

Fair thee well, Chris. We'll always have Leeman/Savard.

(Unless this is some sort of sign-and-trade. Hmm... Kaberle for Durno?)


  1. Kaberle for Durno. LOL. Git 'er done Burkie.

  2. Ah yes. I just caught the bad news on Sportsnet and immediately thought of this site.

  3. Durno? The Avs signed Durno? Dammit.

    Um...what position does he play again?

  4. I guess Burke is planning on dressing 8 or 9 defencemen next season. Fantastic job Burke. You go girl!

  5. I don't know. I kind of like "Not Durno".

  6. Can someone tell Burke that Durno is 6'4? Also lie to him a bit, and throw in that he's a defenceman. That'll get trade winds blowing!

  7. Francois "Not Durno" Beauchemin and Bruce "Malkin to the Kings" Garrioch are two handles which shall be typed or said in their entirety forevermore.

  8. Rolston (ex Wakaluk)July 7, 2009 at 8:51 AM

    DGB, do you think, after all those defensman we signed, that White will again transfer to RW, because depth on the blue line?

  9. @Rolston...

    I think there are three options for White:

    - Starts well down the depth chart and waits for the inevitable Van Ryn injury to get playing time.

    - Moves to forward (but he doesn't really fit the Burke plan there, does he?)

    - Steps up into a top offensive role after Kaberle is dealt.

    I think it all depends on how Wilson and Burke really feel about him. If they like him as much as they seem to, door #3 seems like a real option.

    Moving to forward would just be a placeholder... I don't think his future is there.

  10. Whitey has always been an offensive defenseman and I think he showed some prowess last year when given the opportunity. I like him on the PP with Beauchemin!

  11. So, DGB, what were you saying a couple weeks ago about "complacency"?
    I see your complacency and raise you truculence!

  12. I Durno if I can go on living, now that you've broken this story wide open.

  13. Looks like you've got some competition. This article totally reminded me of you: