For the 5th straight time in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Toronto Maple Leafs failed to move out of the opening round of competition. The latest disappointment came in the form of a 3-1 loss to the rival Montreal Canadiens in Game 7 of their Round 1 North Division playoff series - and of course, that came on the heels of blowing a 3-1 series advantage.
It's a rather sobering (and almost unbelievable) statistical reality that the Maple Leafs have yet to win a playoff series since the invention of YouTube. The last time they enjoyed playoff success? The rocking Game 7 victory over the Ottawa Senators at the then-named Air Canada Centre in 2004. And management certainly has a long road ahead as they decide of where they can go from here.
Assistant coach Dave Haxtol has already departed to become the 1st head coach in the history of the expansion Seattle Kraken, though it wasn't long before the Leafs found his replacement on Sheldon Keefe's staff, as they announced the hiring of Dean Chynoweth, who has spent the last three seasons as an assistant with the Carolina Hurricanes under Rod Brind'Amour.
And today, they've announced an additional pair of promotions.
Wes Clark has been officially tapped as director of amateur scouting; he'll also be keeping his current role as assistant director of player personnel. Meanwhile, the team announced a new director of pro scouting in the form of current director of hockey strategy Eric Joyce; like Clark, he'll be keeping his current job as well.
After having previously served as a scout and player evaluation consultant with the Leafs from over a span of two years from 2014 to 2016, Clark took his talents to South Beach, working with the Florida Panthers as a scout. He'd return to the Maple Leafs in 2018.
Meanwhile, Joyce also has a history with the Panthers, having spent seven years within their organization and going all the way from assistant to the general manager to the title of assistant general manager.