Maple Leaf GM Burke meets with Wilson and Kessel

Bob McKenzie
2/7/2011 6:47:20 PM
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Toronto Maple Leaf general manager Brian Burke met separately on Monday morning with head coach Ron Wilson and winger Phil Kessel. His message was the same to the two individuals, who traded barbs through the media on Sunday.

"I just told them to, 'Sort it out with each other, get it cleared up,'" Burke said. "Because neither one of them is going anywhere. I am not trading the player. I am not firing the coach.

"Listen, this is a tempest in a teapot. It's a frustrated hockey player who isn't happy because he isn't scoring and said some things that weren't perceived correctly. Phil Kessel does not want out of Toronto. He told me this morning he loves it in Toronto and would like to sign another contract here."

Wilson and Kessel did meet this morning and they were sounding much more amicable today than on Sunday, when Kessel said he has no communication with Wilson and Wilson said Kessel disdains any attempts to discuss how he can improve his game.

"It's a speed bump, not a major issue," Burke said. "It's Toronto, it's a fishbowl environment and Phil knew that when he signed here. I mean, until he scored last night, Vinny Lecavalier had one goal in his last 15 or 16 games or whatever, but his team is playing well, it's Vinny Lecavalier and Tampa is not Toronto. Things don't get the same attention, which is fine. That's just how it is but this (Kessel-Wilson) situation is not a huge issue and we're moving forward."

Brian Burke and Phil Kessel (Photo: The Canadian Press)


(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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