Every year I hear complaints from Minnesota Wild fans that there aren't enough native Minnesotans on the team. And when a Minnesotan is traded by another team, I'm sure Star-Tribune scribe Mike Russo fields endless e-mails and tweets asking why the Wild didn't make the move. The same must apply when Minnesotans are released by others as well. Every time this happens I wonder to myself if we are alone in this provincial thinking.
Well, after watching Ron McLean's interview with a pissed-off Brian Burke Saturday evening I can safely say we are not alone. McLean asked Burke straight out if he feels any pressure to bring in some Ontario kids to the Maple Leafs. Burke smartly replied that he takes the best players, regardless of birthplace. The Toronto fan base (and media) must be exponentially worse at badgering the hometown NHL team to bring in local talent. Kudos to Burke for not caving, so far.
Granted, it would be nice and cute if the Wild were also stocked with home-grown talent. Think of a roster with Zach Parise, Jake Gardiner, Blake Wheeler, Dustin "Every Day I'm" Byfuglien and Paul Martin. Maybe even fire Mike Yeo and bring in the Wooger to coach. All kidding aside, I wouldn't mind seeing Dan Terhaar replaced with Frank Mazzocco, he was the only reason I watched UMTC hockey in the past.