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Do the Leafs have too many offensive defencemen?

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01-02-2013, 11:52 PM
  #1
Bomber0104
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Do the Leafs have too many offensive defencemen?

Something I have been noticing as of late that is that the Leafs have an abundance of defencemen who are of the "offensive" type. These include defencemen who are on long-term contracts, very promising rookies, and also our team captain.


In other words, we have Phaneuf, Liles, Gardiner, and Rielly.


I really do wonder how we can work all of these players into a workable Randy Carlyle type of defence-first system of play.


Do you think we can envision having all four of these players on our blue line in the next few years?

Do you think we will simply have to trade one or two of them out of necessity? If so, who goes?


I'd really like to hear some ideas for Toronto's defence in the future!


Last edited by Bomber0104: 01-03-2013 at 12:23 AM.
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01-03-2013, 12:01 AM
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Don't forget Franson!

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01-03-2013, 12:03 AM
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Dreakmur
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The problem isn't that we have too many offensive guys. The problem is thaat we have too few guys who can play reliable defense.

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01-03-2013, 12:03 AM
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Liles is a placeholder until Rielly reaches that level

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01-03-2013, 12:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamosko View Post
Liles is a placeholder until Rielly reaches that level
That's why it was so dumb to sign him long term...

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01-03-2013, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamosko View Post
Liles is a placeholder until Rielly reaches that level
As Dreamkur said, Liles is on an expensive, long-term contract.

Not all that tradeable really, in my opinion, especially with questions concerning the concussion he received.

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01-03-2013, 12:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
The problem isn't that we have too many offensive guys. The problem is thaat we have too few guys who can play reliable defense.
Well even if we kept all four of those guys in even two years from now...that means you have to play two of those guys with one another.

Meaning some combination of:

Phaneuf - Gardiner
Phaneuf - Rielly
Phaneuf - Liles

etc. etc. etc.

I'm not so sure Randy Carlyle is going to like what he sees.

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01-03-2013, 12:14 AM
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Yeah 3 years after this year is pretty long, but at least we won't make the same mistake we did with Schenn.

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01-03-2013, 12:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
The problem isn't that we have too many offensive guys. The problem is thaat we have too few guys who can play reliable defense.
Well said .

Overall we also have a problem with too many of our players only capable of doing one thing well .

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01-03-2013, 12:45 AM
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Jax Teller
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Originally Posted by Bomber0104 View Post
As Dreamkur said, Liles is on an expensive, long-term contract.

Not all that tradeable really, in my opinion, especially with questions concerning the concussion he received.
Liles had 46 points the year before coming to the Leafs. He was on a similar pace before his concussion.

For a 40+ point defenseman a contract under 4 million is actually quite reasonable. Liles himself said he likely left money on the table signing with Toronto. He also only has about 3.5 years on his contract, this isn't a 10 year deal.

He is definately tradeable.

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01-03-2013, 12:52 AM
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Originally Posted by vinnybaby View Post
Liles had 46 points the year before coming to the Leafs. He was on a similar pace before his concussion.

For a 40+ point defenseman a contract under 4 million is actually quite reasonable. Liles himself said he likely left money on the table signing with Toronto. He also only has about 3.5 years on his contract, this isn't a 10 year deal.
So Toronto traded for him for a 2nd round pick when he was far cheaper and not concussed.

What forces a team to trade a 2nd for him with such an expensive contract, a concussion, and only 2nd pairing ability on a really bad team? Keep in mind his best years are probably behind him with age and concussion to keep in mind.

At the least you are saying that Liles could be traded. Who knows, he could be.

That leaves Phaneuf, Rielly, and Gardiner.

I don't think Gardiner or his agent would appreciate third pairing minutes.

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01-03-2013, 12:55 AM
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Originally Posted by vinnybaby View Post
Liles had 46 points the year before coming to the Leafs. He was on a similar pace before his concussion.

For a 40+ point defenseman a contract under 4 million is actually quite reasonable. Liles himself said he likely left money on the table signing with Toronto. He also only has about 3.5 years on his contract, this isn't a 10 year deal.

He is definately tradeable.
Col was shopping JML since the trade deadline with the asking price being a 2nd with no takers before the Leafs decided to pull the trigger during the summer . With a reduced cap and longer term left on his present deal he won't be easy to move without taking money back .

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01-03-2013, 01:00 AM
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If Liles can get back to how he was playing before the concussion then he has value and I feel his contract is actually becomes a bargain. If he can't then we are probably stuck with him unless we take back a bad contract.

Phaneuf does bring offense, but also has the ability to play strong defense and throw big hits.

So I hope Liles is eventually moved, and Rielly QBs one PP and Gards the other.

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01-03-2013, 01:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hotpaws View Post
Col was shopping JML since the trade deadline with the asking price being a 2nd with no takers before the Leafs decided to pull the trigger during the summer . With a reduced cap and longer term left on his present deal he won't be easy to move without taking money back .
Komisarek and Liles are both buyout candidates if the cap drops to $60 mil next season, as both are expendable but not very desirable.

Liles -14 and Komisarek -13 were Leafs two worst +/- defenseman and contributed greatly to Leafs 29th ranked goals against.

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01-03-2013, 01:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bomber0104 View Post
Something I have been noticing as of late that is that the Leafs have an abundance of defencemen who are of the "offensive" type. These include defencemen who are on long-term contracts, very promising rookies, and also our team captain.

In other words, we have Phaneuf, Liles, Gardiner, and Rielly.

I really do wonder how we can work all of these players into a workable Randy Carlyle type of defence-first system of play.

Do you think we can envision having all four of these players on our blue line in the next few years?

Do you think we will simply have to trade one or two of them out of necessity? If so, who goes?

I'd really like to hear some ideas for Toronto's defence in the future!
1. Rielly and Phaneuf aren't pure offensive guys, Rielly has some 2 way capabilities, and Phaneuf is a hybrid between a OFD and DFD. I'd like to see how a Gardiner-Rielly pairing works out, and then have Gunnar/better dman aqcuired with Phaneuf, and have a Liles/Ranger/Blacker/Holzer pair for the last.
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01-03-2013, 01:15 AM
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The only two true offensive defensemen are Cody Franson and John-Michael Liles.

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01-03-2013, 01:15 AM
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Phaneuf an offensive d-man?
Rielly an offensive d-man?

These guys are known as two-way defensemen. Phaneuf is not a pure scorer like Liles.
They excel at offense but also make smart or big plays on defence, phaneuf hits alot, and in a better system can be great defensively.
Rielly as well makes the smart play.

Gardiner as well is fast enough that he can make up his mistakes.

Franson and Liles are more pure offensive guys.

Gunnar is more of two-way secondary defensemen who makes the smart play.

But to ultimately answer your question, yes I think we need one MAYBE two stay at home guys. But Rielly-Phaneuf is a lethal future pairing.

Add in Holzer in the 3rd pairing, and then a strong two-way d-man in the #4 slot and this defense looks really good.

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01-03-2013, 01:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bomber0104 View Post
So Toronto traded for him for a 2nd round pick when he was far cheaper and not concussed.

What forces a team to trade a 2nd for him with such an expensive contract, a concussion, and only 2nd pairing ability on a really bad team? Keep in mind his best years are probably behind him with age and concussion to keep in mind.

At the least you are saying that Liles could be traded. Who knows, he could be.

That leaves Phaneuf, Rielly, and Gardiner.

I don't think Gardiner or his agent would appreciate third pairing minutes.
He was not cheaper when the Leafs traded for him, he had a higher cap hit last season.

Since when is it a bad thing to sign good players to contracts longer then 1 or 2 years. All I hear on the trade board is I'm not giving up so and so for 1 or 2 years of blank. The reason we got Liles cheap in the first place was because he had limited term.

So, Liles puts up his second highest point total the year before coming to the Leafs and follows it up with a near identical pace last season, before concussion. And he's declining... because of age? Doesn't appear that way too me.

His concussion is a bit concerning. But, concussions don't always signal the end of a players career. Will Gardiner ever return to form? Kadri? Reimer? Liles has had a nice long rest, this shouldn't still be an issue.

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01-03-2013, 01:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rdawg1234 View Post
Phaneuf an offensive d-man?
Rielly an offensive d-man?

These guys are known as two-way defensemen. Phaneuf is not a pure scorer like Liles.
They excel at offense but also make smart or big plays on defence, phaneuf hits alot, and in a better system can be great defensively.
Rielly as well makes the smart play.

Gardiner as well is fast enough that he can make up his mistakes.

Franson and Liles are more pure offensive guys.

Gunnar is more of two-way secondary defensemen who makes the smart play.

But to ultimately answer your question, yes I think we need one MAYBE two stay at home guys. But Rielly-Phaneuf is a lethal future pairing.

Add in Holzer in the 3rd pairing, and then a strong two-way d-man in the #4 slot and this defense looks really good.
Gunnar?
Rielly-Phaneuf
Gardiner-Gunnarsson
Liles/Ranger-Holzer

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01-03-2013, 02:15 AM
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Let's put together a first PK unit of Gardiner and Rielly.... see how long it takes to realize they aren't 2-way guys

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01-03-2013, 02:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
Let's put together a first PK unit of Gardiner and Rielly.... see how long it takes to realize they aren't 2-way guys
Who cares? They can just take turns skating around with the puck killing time, not like anyone would touch them

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01-03-2013, 02:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
Let's put together a first PK unit of Gardiner and Rielly.... see how long it takes to realize they aren't 2-way guys
If your definition of a 2way D is that they play PK, yikes.

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01-03-2013, 02:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Leaffan16 View Post
If your definition of a 2way D is that they play PK, yikes.
A two-way guy should be good enough offensively to play on the PP and good enough defensively to play on the PK.

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01-03-2013, 03:20 AM
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Long term, yeah, we'll have to make some moves. Phaneuf, Gardiner, Rielly and Liles are all left handed, offensive dmen who like to handle the puck. Other guys like Franson, Blacker and Finn could sort of be considered offensive dmen as well. We have a lot of talent on d (in terms of players and prospects combined), but we'll likely have to make some trades for it all to fit together properly.

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01-03-2013, 05:28 AM
  #25
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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
That's why it was so dumb to sign him long term...
Yes....I hated the signing....poor asset management and now it is looking worse if the Salary cap moves down to $60 million....maybe harder to move him.

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