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Burke Says A Top Centre Is Priority One

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
TORONTO -- The acquisition of a No. 1 centre will be an off-season priority for Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke.

Burke said Tuesday shoring up the centre position is more important to him than bolstering Toronto's defence corps.

``I don't see it (defence) as nearly the same priority as a centre,'' Burke said. ``But we'll evaluate that also.''

The Maple Leafs missed the playoffs for the sixth straight year. However, there's a sense of optimism about the team's future given Toronto posted an 18-9-6 record to end the season.

Rookie James Reimer was a big reason for Toronto's impressive late-season run and will come into training camp as the club's No. 1 goalie. A decision needs to be made about who will back him up as veteran J.S. Giguere just completed the final year of his deal while Jonas Gustavsson battled health issues this season.

But Burke said he didn't expect to add a veteran backup.

``Not at this point,'' he said. ``We'll see how training camp goes.''

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