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Jake Gardiner, Will you be ready (tomorrow)?

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Old
06-14-2011, 09:40 AM
  #26
Rinzler
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Originally Posted by s h a n Y e View Post
Blacker, Aulie, Gardiner, Schenn, Phaneuf, Gunnarson.

Solid young core.
Agreed, there's a lot of promise there. Size, Grit, Speed, Skill. Well balanced imo. Unfortunately it will take another year or two to come to fruition.

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06-14-2011, 10:28 AM
  #27
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Originally Posted by StarBurns View Post
I saw very little restraint in his rover style of play with the Marlies late in the season. He has a lot to learn about picking his spots and defending in the defensive zone. Still, he has the great raw skills that you could project as a defenseman like Mike Green or Brian Campbell. I bet Blacker is closer to the NHL despite being younger.
Given that Gardiner only played a limited number of games with the Marlies they probably just let him do what he does. Next season they will start working on fixing the holes.

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06-14-2011, 10:37 AM
  #28
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He'll definitely need some time in the AHL considering he only played 10 pro games.

We'll have a better gauge at training camp...

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06-14-2011, 12:39 PM
  #29
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I would say leave him down for a year, same with Blacker. Offer the 3rd round pick to Edmonton for Kurtis Foster or sign Bergeron to a one year deal.

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06-14-2011, 12:53 PM
  #30
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Hey, let's be honest, even when he's ready to leave the AHL, he's gonna need some time to be successful in the NHL.

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06-14-2011, 05:14 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by mooseOAK View Post
Given that Gardiner only played a limited number of games with the Marlies they probably just let him do what he does. Next season they will start working on fixing the holes.
You're probably right. You can't find out your limitations without pushing to them. It's a great thing that nobody taught Bobby Orr or Paul Coffey how to rap the puck off the glass to clear the zone.

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06-14-2011, 05:35 PM
  #32
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Originally Posted by StarBurns View Post
You're probably right. You can't find out your limitations without pushing to them. It's a great thing that nobody taught Bobby Orr or Paul Coffey how to rap the puck off the glass to clear the zone.
Well, Ken Hitchcock wasn't coaching in the league back then.

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06-14-2011, 06:44 PM
  #33
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I think him AND Balcker sould be on the team starting game 1! IMO YOUNG Dmen flourish in the system RW plays, i'm not the biggest RW fan but his track record and results with the younger Dmen in particular is good.

IMO let this group grow together now, we have our first pick next year for insurance (in the deepest predicted draft since 03.) BUT i think the type of players both Gardiner and Blacker play is perfect for our chemistry and balance through our line up.

These are the lines i would roll

Aulie LHS - Phanuef LHS- Had great chemistry! Dion needs to play with a big DD it fits his style and brings out the offense more. Remember Dion's best season in the NHL he played with Hamerlik and i believe Aulie can play at a higher level.

Gardiner LHS - Schenn RHS - Can we say match made in heaven. I honestly think these 2 will play amazing together. Gardiner is the PMD we are looking for! There might be bumps in the road defensively but thats where i think Luke will be such a good compliment. Why pay $4.5+ on a UFA or trade assets, when the PMD is right here and NTM was drafted in the same year as Luke! He has filled out considerably since drafted as well.

Gunnarsson LHS- Blacker RHS - It's a stretch with with Blacker, especially with Komisarek and Lebda around BUT aside from that I think down the line or even game 1 (if BB could somehow dump Komo and bury Lebad) Gunnar and Blacker have similar games and Blacker can bring some more sandpaper along with skill to compliment Gunners solid all around play.

I'm not saying these will be the line ups game 1 but what i am saying, is that this is the line up i prefer moving forward as a young team on the rise and imo compliment each others skill set and could surprise!

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06-14-2011, 06:57 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by Rockinz View Post
IMO YOUNG Dmen flourish in the system RW plays!
While I don't think either should be on the team given the amount of minutes that can be handed out in a game, I do completely agree with this assessment.

If you look at RW's track record, his development of young players like Schenn, Gunnarsson, White and Kulemin has allowed them to be completely reliable players now.

He knows when to sit them, when to play them, when to bench them, etc.

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06-14-2011, 07:07 PM
  #35
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Originally Posted by Rockinz View Post
I think him AND Balcker sould be on the team starting game 1! IMO YOUNG Dmen flourish in the system RW plays, i'm not the biggest RW fan but his track record and results with the younger Dmen in particular is good.

IMO let this group grow together now, we have our first pick next year for insurance (in the deepest predicted draft since 03.) BUT i think the type of players both Gardiner and Blacker play is perfect for our chemistry and balance through our line up.

These are the lines i would roll

Aulie LHS - Phanuef LHS- Had great chemistry! Dion needs to play with a big DD it fits his style and brings out the offense more. Remember Dion's best season in the NHL he played with Hamerlik and i believe Aulie can play at a higher level.

Gardiner LHS - Schenn RHS - Can we say match made in heaven. I honestly think these 2 will play amazing together. Gardiner is the PMD we are looking for! There might be bumps in the road defensively but thats where i think Luke will be such a good compliment. Why pay $4.5+ on a UFA or trade assets, when the PMD is right here and NTM was drafted in the same year as Luke! He has filled out considerably since drafted as well.

Gunnarsson LHS- Blacker RHS - It's a stretch with with Blacker, especially with Komisarek and Lebda around BUT aside from that I think down the line or even game 1 (if BB could somehow dump Komo and bury Lebad) Gunnar and Blacker have similar games and Blacker can bring some more sandpaper along with skill to compliment Gunners solid all around play.

I'm not saying these will be the line ups game 1 but what i am saying, is that this is the line up i prefer moving forward as a young team on the rise and imo compliment each others skill set and could surprise!
I like this idea, and totally agree about young defenceman becoming very reliable under RW, one of the things that gets overlooked IMO.

Dumping Komi is easier said than done though, which would be a problem. Burying Lebderp is easy enough, but Komi is a whole different story. If someone takes Komi off our hands, then I am all for this line-up, and have Lashoff as 7th D.

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06-14-2011, 07:47 PM
  #36
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Originally Posted by NoTouchIcing View Post
If you look at RW's track record, his development of young players like Schenn, Gunnarsson, White and Kulemin has allowed them to be completely reliable players now.
While I'm not arguing against the idea that RW can develop players, those guys weren't exactly longshots to be NHL regulars anyway. Schenn was good on arrival, Gunnarsson had some solid SEL seasons and wasn't a liability at any point in the NHL, and Kulemin was an RSL MVP. I think RW was crazy for benching White in the first place.

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06-14-2011, 07:52 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by Joey Hoser View Post
While I'm not arguing against the idea that RW can develop players, those guys weren't exactly longshots to be NHL regulars anyway. Schenn was good on arrival, Gunnarsson had some solid SEL seasons and wasn't a liability at any point in the NHL, and Kulemin was an RSL MVP. I think RW was crazy for benching White in the first place.
Fair point, but they all needed work on their games, and RW brought all along nicely to an NHL-calibre level. Regardless of whether they are top prospects or longshots, they need to be developed properly by the coaching staff to become reliable.

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06-14-2011, 08:42 PM
  #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joey Hoser View Post
While I'm not arguing against the idea that RW can develop players, those guys weren't exactly longshots to be NHL regulars anyway. Schenn was good on arrival, Gunnarsson had some solid SEL seasons and wasn't a liability at any point in the NHL, and Kulemin was an RSL MVP. I think RW was crazy for benching White in the first place.
It's not only with the Leafs though... a guy like Ehrhoff who was a 'longshot' in the beginning and RW developed him into a solid dman. Like i said i'm not a RW guy but one thing he does well is developing young dmen. IMO his body of work working with young guys is good and i fell if we could somehow dump Koma and Lebad i'd be fine with Blacker and Gardiner filling those holes!

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06-14-2011, 09:06 PM
  #39
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I believe Blacker will be a much better player than Gardiner

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06-14-2011, 09:32 PM
  #40
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Originally Posted by mooseOAK View Post
Barely anyone has seen Gardiner play.
I saw him play a couple of games with the Marlies.

He didn't exactly stand out, but my god the kid can fly. He'll be one of the fastest defensemen in the league once he makes the jump. He also seems to have good hockey sense, so thankfully he shouldn't be a turnover machine.

He admitted after his stint with the Marlies that he needs to get much bigger and strong to be able to compete in front of the net.

I really hope he gets a full year in the AHL next season. The Marlies are stacked with players who can fill in for injured Leafs (Holzer, Lashoff, maybe Mikus), so no need to rush the kid before he's physically ready.

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06-14-2011, 09:33 PM
  #41
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I remember hearing Piere Mcguire say that Blacker would be ready for the NHL this upcoming season.

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06-14-2011, 09:42 PM
  #42
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Would Gardiner (and/or Blacker for that matter) be ready to play next year in the NHL in a limited role? Possibly. Is it a good idea? Probably not.

Torontos defense right now is VERY young. After Phaneuf, you have Schenn (going into his 4th year), Aulie (who hasn't even played a full season yet), Gunnarson (going into his 3rd year) as your top 4. With Komi (declining value) and Lebda (shouldn't be relied on).

I think Toronto should sign a veteran player, since there's a fairly good chance that one of Schenn, Aulie, or Gunnarson are going to regress next year compared to this year (growing pains). Having a player that we can rely on to consistently play as a good top 4 would be good, and bringing in another young guy like Gardiner (or Blacker) just brings in more potential for growing pains. I think both those young defenseman won't be hurt at all by playing a full year in the AHL, and called up on an injury basis, whereas if they're at all expected to play full time with the NHL it could be counterproductive for both them and the team

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06-14-2011, 09:52 PM
  #43
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Another reason to sign a veteran defenseman could be to pull a Pittsburgh. Sign some defense, make it a position of strength, and then be able to move one of your younger prospects/players for a similarly aged prospect/player in a weaker position.

Ex: Pens signed Martin/Michalek last summer, which gave them the depth to trade Goglioski for Neal.

If Toronto did something like that, it could make room for Gardiner in the NHL towards the end of the season (if Aulie or Gunnarson were traded for example) while maintaining a good balance between veterans/young players on the blueline.

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06-14-2011, 10:18 PM
  #44
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Originally Posted by juntao55 View Post
Another reason to sign a veteran defenseman could be to pull a Pittsburgh. Sign some defense, make it a position of strength, and then be able to move one of your younger prospects/players for a similarly aged prospect/player in a weaker position.

Ex: Pens signed Martin/Michalek last summer, which gave them the depth to trade Goglioski for Neal.

If Toronto did something like that, it could make room for Gardiner in the NHL towards the end of the season (if Aulie or Gunnarson were traded for example) while maintaining a good balance between veterans/young players on the blueline.
If Aulie ever gets traded by Burke than there's an all-star coming the other way

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06-14-2011, 10:30 PM
  #45
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I'd rather see Lashoff up here rather than Gardiner, let the kid develop in the A.

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06-15-2011, 02:48 AM
  #46
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Holzer before either Gardiner or Blacker.

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06-15-2011, 03:42 AM
  #47
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Our defence is stacked. Lots of prospects, young guys with potential and we can build our own core if we want. I would still add one dman. PMD with longer contract or veteran presence with shorter contract. Phaneuf, Schenn, Aulie, Gunnarsson, Komisarek, Lashoff, Holzer, Gysbers, Mikus, Gardiner, Blacker. Not strongest group yet, but damn there is lots of potential. Hopefully we can get it out of these guys. In best case scenario we have to trade out two or three guys from defence in future. Off course there is risk that we don't find top end talent and we have to buy it, but we should have future depth guys all ready. Off course Phaneuf and Schenn are top4 guys, but we need at least two more guys of that caliber to contend. Komisarek has talent to be one and we can sign that PMD from FA.

We don't have to rush Gardiner. If his ready he will get his chance. When player is good enough he can grab a place by himself. Like Aulie did last season and Gunnarsson before that. If Komisarek busts his contract will be a problem, he should be first body to move out. If Gardiner or other young dman succeeds. Though it's impossible to move Komisarek at the moment.

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06-15-2011, 03:52 AM
  #48
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Originally Posted by NoTouchIcing View Post
Fair point, but they all needed work on their games, and RW brought all along nicely to an NHL-calibre level. Regardless of whether they are top prospects or longshots, they need to be developed properly by the coaching staff to become reliable.
Agree, very good points about RWs coaching. He do seem to bring out the best out of our young players. Well most of them any way. The ones with a team first attitude that is.

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06-15-2011, 04:44 AM
  #49
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Holzer before either Gardiner or Blacker.
Agreed.

Gardiner will need more pro time, love the guy but not ready yet me thinks.

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06-15-2011, 09:12 AM
  #50
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Holzer before either Gardiner or Blacker.
If I may add Lashoff too, Lashoff and Holzer before Gardiner or Blacker.

Saw a lot of all four this year, and it's clear that the two youngsters in Gardiner and Blacker, while having great seasons, need a little more seasoning before they're ready for the jump to the NHL.

Gardiner has NHL-level skating already, but he needs to become a bit more consistent with his positioning and decision making. You could be the best skater in the world, but if you don't know where to skate, it's all in vain. Gardiner needs a year, maybe two, before he's considered for a full-time NHL job. A call-up here or there might be suitable.

Blacker needs to play well against bigger, stronger guys in the pro game for at least half a season before you can adequately say he's ready for the NHL. Maybe he shows he's ready in the first 40ish games of the AHL season, and forces his way onto the Leafs roster, but that'll be drastic. In my opinion, Blacker also needs a year at least, maybe two, to settle into the pro grame at the AHL level before he does the same at the NHL level.

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