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Old 10-15-2020, 06:43 PM   #1
topfiverecords
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Just finished Burke’s Law, Brian Burke’s biography written by Stephen Brunt,
that came out a couple days ago. Thoroughly entertaining all the way through with great story after great story and tidbits about all parts of the hockey business.

Flames related he talks about repping Joel Otto and Brett Hull, the Phaneuf trade, a fair bit on his time in hockey ops with the Flames, Tkachuk draft, Wideman incident, and that Giordano was one of his favourite captains.

I figured it would be way more enjoyable if I could listen to it in audiobook format and managed to get it online through a library. Listening to Burke’s book read by Burke himself was like sitting with him while he spoke nonstop about his life for 9 straight hours.

Highly highly recommend to read or listen. The audiobook is available on Audible too if you have a subscription.
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Old 10-16-2020, 02:40 PM   #2
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Thanks for the review! I pre-ordered it but haven't gotten into it yet.
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Old 10-16-2020, 02:47 PM   #3
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Burke came out a few times as a guest speaker at our Sports and Entertainment Law course at UBC. He is so genuine - what you see on TV is exactly what he is like in person.
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Old 10-16-2020, 04:05 PM   #4
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Brian Burke story time.

I'm going to preface this by saying that I don't understand why some people love to crap on him. He's a dinosaur, he's a sourpuss, he's wrong, etc... Yeah, he knows the game of managing a hockey team has passed him by and he knows he's a curmudgeon.

Also, when he's wrong he freely admits it.

I've met and spoken with BB a handful of times over the years in Calgary and he's basically exactly who you think he is. Only much, much nicer. The game of hockey is better with him in it.

Some highlights if anyone is interested:
  • Lance Bouma and Paul Byron were his favorite PK'ers.
  • He loved smack talking to Bouma about his terrible stick handling ability.
  • He said the long line change for visiting teams is his biggest reason to have home ice advantage.
  • He did not have any work/life balance advice for me ("I've been fired X times and divorced Y times during my career. No one should be listening to me about this topic.")
  • When he was fired from the Leafs and walking through the ACC concourse to leave, they were dismantling his Burkie's hot dog stand. He did not like that and also said those hot dogs were super high quality. He had intimate knowledge of this operation.
  • He's up before 6am every day and on the treadmill for an hour before heading into the office/rink. He does not sleep until at least a couple hours after the game. He's basically a machine.
  • He smelled like a spring meadow.
  • Yes, he wears his tie/hair like that because he enjoys how it bothers people.

We talked about about a slew of things over those conversations, but that's all I can remember. I wish he was still involved with the Flames in some official capacity.
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Old 10-16-2020, 04:07 PM   #5
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I'm a huge Burke fan. I've noticed a correlation between people that don't like him, and people that don't know much about hockey. He can be opinionated which people mistake for arrogance, but he's one of the nicest people in hockey
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Old 10-16-2020, 04:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btimbit View Post
I'm a huge Burke fan. I've noticed a correlation between people that don't like him, and people that don't know much about hockey. He can be opinionated which people mistake for arrogance, but he's one of the nicest people in hockey
Completely agree. The people that don’t like Burke are the type of people who constantly need things sugarcoated for them.
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Old 10-17-2020, 05:35 AM   #7
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I've seen him speak and met him briefly and would agree, very genuine - he is exactly as you would expect him to be. Only difference is now I think he actually wears his tie properly when speaking
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Old 10-18-2020, 03:06 PM   #8
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I have always felt the way him and the way the Flames parted ways was interesting. In the the interviews he has given regarding the book he has mentioned that Ken King told him they were going a different direction in February.

He had always talked about wanting to be in Calgary for 10 years, bringing home a cup etc. I think ownership at the time felt that they were not getting much in the way of value with him and decided to part ways.

The Flames missed the playoffs, Gully was a disaster, Brouwer signing was terrible and many many more issues.

I have always wondered how conversations with ownership and management go when deals or moves happen that don't make sense at the time and then turn into disasters later on.

I know a lot of fans like to think the business aspects don't matter as much but generally speaking, the type of mistakes that happen with sports aren't allowed to happen with the same frequency in business.

I have always liked Burke, think he's a good man and a good hockey mind. I do think he had an excellent situation that led to a cup win with the Ducks in 07 and kind of rode that success to other markets like Toronto and Calgary.

His straight talking, in your face bluster and draft day moves earned him a large rep of being a massive winner but a deeper dive of his body of work over his career show his team's weren't all that great.

Still like the guy and will read the book.
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Old 10-18-2020, 06:16 PM   #9
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Didn’t like Burke the GM but he’s a regular guest on Team1260 and he is knowledgeable (of course, with his resume) and seems likeable and genuine. Now I like and enjoy the guy.
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Old 10-18-2020, 07:49 PM   #10
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Yeah he's a great interview. Always like when he pops on the radio. His times on spittin chiclets were great as well
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