Today's Star article mentions that Blacker has been cleared to play. This may mean that Percy will be knocked back to the sidelines for the Abbottsford series. The only defenseman I'd see Percy bumping is Mikus.
Do people really think Holzer is a top 4 d-man? I haven't seen much of him, but I remember watching him last season and didn't think he had "omg such amazing upside, top 4 for sure" kind of a ceiling?
im pretty sure leafs mangement see holzer for what he is- a consistant defense 1st bottom pairing defenseman who takes the body hard. he basically seems like a schenn clone but given proper development time and managed expectations.
im fairly confident that whatever schenn and komisarek can do holzer can do as well at a fraction of the cost. i think thats the key. its fine to be a bottom pairing defenseman. teams need those just like they need bottom 6 forwards.
even though a lot of people are against moving schenn i think if holzer proves that he can play in the nhl then schenn should be moved for offensive help. the way i see it schenn will be a 4th-6th defenseman on the leafs if he is lucky. at $3.6 million it is money that could be better spent elsewhere.
the emergence of percy is even more reason to consider moving schenn. he can develop with the marlies for 2 more years and then hopefully make the leap after the 2nd year, the same time that komisareks contract expires.
Blacker and Percy both have to play, even if it is to sacrifice a game. The AHL is a developmental league for prospects. I don't know who sits, but perhaps Mueller should sit out and we dress 7 Defenceman.
Blacker and Percy may be big for us in the NHL playoffs in a year? Or 2? This is valuable experience they can gain.