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Some of the challenges facing the Leafs with free agency beckoning...

There is always a surprising amount of hockey activity once the playoffs are over.  Even though it's summertime, there are RFA's to sign (or not), UFA's available July 1 and of course the always popular (now concluded) entry draft.

Where do the Leafs fit?  Are we poised for a big free-agent signing?  Will Burke surprise us?

The draft brought a mixed reaction from Leafworld.  Some loved the first round picks (Biggs and Percy).  Others wondered if they will ever be significant contributors in Toronto.  Could Burke have accomplished the same thing without giving up his 30th and 39th picks?

And what of the much discussed Kaberle and Kessel deals.  We now have the names, but not the final verdict.  The Bruins have Seguin, Jared Knight and young defenseman Doug Hamilton for Kessel.

Kaberle brought back young Joe Colborne and (after trading the 30th pick) Tyler Biggs, two youngsters with size.

How that all turns out, we won't know for a few years.  This much we know now:  the Bruins have a Cup and a good team, even without Kaberle, who turned out to be a rental.  The Leafs are still trying to get to that level.

Yes, questions around the Maple Leafs many.  But I suppose that's part of the summertime fun. (Look at the Sabres. After years of cost constraints because of ownership, they are making waves under Pegula and the fans are finally getting to enjoy an off-season...)

As we anxiously wait out the next few hours before the Leafs can start making further moves, here are some recent posts you might have missed, relating to various issues facing the blue and white heading into next season (click to see the earlier stories):

-Assessing Brian Burke

-Some quiet moves that are helping to build the Leafs

-10 questions for Leaf fans going forward...

-Giving credit to John Ferguson Jr.

-Richards and Carter and the rumor mill

-The summertime wish list

-whether we should be worried about Phil Kessel

The draft is over but the Leafs still have plenty of decisions to make.  This could be one of the more interesting summers in years...

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