Toronto Maple Leafs: Lou Lamoriello not sold on Senior Advisor role

CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 23: (L-R) Lou Lamoriello and Brendan Shanahan of the Toronto Maple Leafs attend the 2017 NHL Draft at the United Center on June 23, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - JUNE 23: (L-R) Lou Lamoriello and Brendan Shanahan of the Toronto Maple Leafs attend the 2017 NHL Draft at the United Center on June 23, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) /

Although it looked as though Lou Lamoriello would transition to a new role with the Toronto Maple Leafs next season, that might not be the case anymore.

For the last few weeks, Toronto Maple Leafs‘ fans have been going back and forth regarding who will fill the team’s General Manager position.

It has come down to two individuals: Kyle Dubas and Mark Hunter. While much has been made of the two Leafs Assistant GM’s, and their respective resumes as it pertains to the position, news has started to bubble about the team’s most recent General Manager.

On Thursday, Arthur Staple of The Athletic wrote a piece on the state of the New York Islanders front office and dropped a new piece of information regarding Lamoriello’s standing with the Maple Leafs:

"Lou Lamoriello remains a distinct possibility to be added to the front office, but in what capacity remains unclear. After Lamoriello was essentially retired last week as Leafs GM after three seasons, kicked over to an advisory role that sources around the league insist the 75-year-old Hall of Famer has no intention of staying on to perform, there has been an avalanche of chatter regarding Lamoriello’s inevitable arrival on Long Island."

While the two sides have been linked previously, it sounded as though Lamoriello and Toronto Maple Leafs’ President and Alternate Governor Brendan Shanahan had planned for this move to be made when he was named GM three seasons ago.

Shanahan said during a conference call last week that this wasn’t a spur of the moment decision to relieve Lamoriello of his role. As per Sportsnet‘s:

"“Three years ago, Lou and I agreed on a contract that would see him serve as general manager of the Maple Leafs for three years and then transition to senior advisor for the following four years. This morning I informed Lou that I was not going to deviate from that course of action. I will now focus all of my attention towards making a decision regarding our next general manager.”"

It wouldn’t be too strange to see the 75-year-old go to the Islanders organization. He spent nearly two decades as the CEO, President, and General Manager of the New Jersey Devils.

Additionally, Lamoriello’s son Chris is the Assistant General Manager for the Islanders and GM of the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

There has been unrest amongst Islanders fans with the team’s current GM Garth Snow. A GoFundMe campaign was started to pay for “Snow Must Go” billboards around the city.

Islanders Owner Jon Ledecky stated last month that he would be taking a look at the organization as a whole this offseason. As per Staple:

"“Our season has just ended and as an organization, we will be evaluating all aspects of our hockey operations. Then we will make decisions on what is best for the future of our club. I am not here today to talk about any specific individuals, including players, coaches, and the general manager. We believe it is essential to our success to have a thoughtful evaluation process, to look at the past and, more importantly, assess the future of our team on and off the ice.”"

Snow has been GM of the Islanders for the past 12 seasons. While the team made the playoffs in his first year at the helm, they have only managed to go back to the postseason three times since 2006-07.

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During his time in Toronto, Lamoriello made several key moves, including the acquisition of Frederik Andersen, signing Patrick Marleau, as well as the contract extensions of Nazem Kadri and Morgan Rielly.

If he does decide to go, Lamoriello would immediately have moves to make. With pending UFA John Tavares‘ future in the air, he has to be convinced with a big contract in order to avoid testing the open market.

Brock Nelson, Brandon Davidson and Ryan Pulock are all restricted free agents as well. So their respective situations would have to be solved on top of the Isles captain.

The coming days will be interesting to observe. If the Islanders truly feel as though Snow isn’t the man to continue running the organization, they will have a replacement in prior to the draft at the end of June.

Next: 3 reasons the Sabres should pursue John Tavares

While it’s not surprising that Lamoriello wants to continue as a GM in the NHL. the news that he will leave the Toronto Maple Leafs after having a new role announced recently is a little startling. As is the case with almost everything he cooks up, nobody will know he’s gone until the press conference is announced.