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Old
04-11-2010, 07:01 AM
  #1
The Messenger
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Sure Could Use A Little Good News Today

In rebutal to the trash talking Toronto Sun thread, thought the glass half full guys should have some print as well.

http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey...ts-lost-season

DiManno: Leafs GM Brian Burke laments lost season

It is a few hours before game time, final outing of a season that will end as it started, against the rival Canadiens, the Leafs this time doing their darndest to thwart Montreal’s knife-edge playoff hopes. But Toronto, as Burke acknowledges, has been running on fumes through this last week of the schedule, after some decent — if nowhere-bound — hockey since the Olympic break.

“We’re completely out of gas,” said Burke. “I watch these players walking into the rink, getting on the bus, and I see a tired group of athletes. First-year pros don’t know how to pace themselves for 82 games. These college kids all hit the college wall. Tyler Bozak looks like he hasn’t had a good night’s sleep in a month.”



and classy:

http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey...-leafs-vs-habs

Call-up Brent to play


We’re rewarding him,” said coach Ron Wilson. “We had one call-up left and we’re using it.”

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04-11-2010, 07:47 AM
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MajorityRules
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Good read. Burke was in quite a dilema for the early part of the season once it was proven that Toskala was not going to provide any form of stable goaltending. Couple that with the dry trade talks in the fall and the need to showcase the players he wanted to be rid of, he was pretty much helpless to watch the trainwreck unfold.

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Old
04-11-2010, 08:11 AM
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ULF_55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern Dancer View Post
In rebutal to the trash talking Toronto Sun thread, thought the glass half full guys should have some print as well.

http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey...ts-lost-season

DiManno: Leafs GM Brian Burke laments lost season

It is a few hours before game time, final outing of a season that will end as it started, against the rival Canadiens, the Leafs this time doing their darndest to thwart Montreal’s knife-edge playoff hopes. But Toronto, as Burke acknowledges, has been running on fumes through this last week of the schedule, after some decent — if nowhere-bound — hockey since the Olympic break.

“We’re completely out of gas,” said Burke. “I watch these players walking into the rink, getting on the bus, and I see a tired group of athletes. First-year pros don’t know how to pace themselves for 82 games. These college kids all hit the college wall. Tyler Bozak looks like he hasn’t had a good night’s sleep in a month.”


and classy:

http://www.thestar.com/sports/hockey...-leafs-vs-habs

Call-up Brent to play


We’re rewarding him,” said coach Ron Wilson. “We had one call-up left and we’re using it.”
I wrote that the other day.

Glad to see I am seeing the same thing Burke is ....

The team has been carried by Kulemin-Bozak-Kessel since after tthe Olympics and they looked spent.

If Stalberg, Hanson, Grabovski could have stepped up earlier than the past two games it would have helped, but they were ineffective for much of the year.

Additionally, with all due respect to the Grabovski fan club, Bozak is the only top 6 center on the team.

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:03 AM
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thejustinfisher
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I knew going into this season the Leafs would be weak up front, but I never expected our backend to let us down.

Toskala, while I've always tried to remain optimistic with him, just didn't cut it.

And you can barely put any blame on Gustavsson's shoulders for his poor game every once in a while. I know it's been said many times before, but to lose both your parents in such a short amount of time, while still very young yourself, and then having two heart surgeries? To come back in no time and continue playing? That's incredible character. Not to mention, he's played great to close out the season. I couldn't be happier with Gustavsson this year.

As for the defence, you can expect some growing pains when there are so many new faces. While Kaberle and Beauchemin did have some strong points to the season, consistency was their main enemy. And when one of your big FA signings in Mike Komisarek goes down with a season ending injury, that's just bad luck. Schenn was decent, but didn't make any huge steps forward in his development. Gunnarson was an excellent surprise though. Exelby and Finger (whether they deserved it or not) became very expensive spare parts.

It's easy to see how Brian Burke and Co. thought this team would be better. I think the majority of the hockey world and Leafs Nation believed the same thing. And it's not like there are plenty of NHL teams around the league looking to get rid of Top 6 forward talent. Burke did exactly what he wanted to do in removing the old guard, and still managed to bring in guys like Beauchemin, Komisarek, Kessel, Phanuef, and Giguere. These are all proven players, and I think everyone was shocked to see the team go south so early.

I don't blame Brian Burke one bit. I stand behind him and believe he will continue to make moves (perhaps nothing as flashy as this past year) and build the Leafs into a playoff team in the coming seasons. I look forward to our young group coming back in the fall, energized, and remembering that they could take the game to the best teams in the league when the played well.

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04-11-2010, 09:14 AM
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Daisy Joy
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Fisher6 - I've been saying that all season as well. I think realistically, the club was prepared for an offensive shortage, but never in a million years imagined that Toskala would have been so horrendously brutal, that we'd torpedo like we did.

This summer will be very productive I think. Maybe not super incredibly productive, but productive none the less, and I know with endurance training and the like, all the kids will be okay, because the majority of the "kids" had suffered injuries, no training camps, and flues all season.

It's 29th and it sucks, but if you take all of that into consideration and what they've managed to accomplish after the olympics, i'm darned proud of this team.

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:15 AM
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This is who I thought of when reading the title of this thread.

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04-11-2010, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fisher6 View Post

I don't blame Brian Burke one bit. I stand behind him and believe he will continue to make moves (perhaps nothing as flashy as this past year) and build the Leafs into a playoff team in the coming seasons.

I look forward to our young group coming back in the fall, energized, and remembering that they could take the game to the best teams in the league when the played well.
If you give Burke credit, you should give him blame.

However, he did not hire the coach.

His best moves:

Phanuef
Giguere
Bozak
Gustavsson

His okay moves:

Kessel
Hanson
Sjostrom

His too soon to tell moves:

Komisarek
Aulie
Caputi

His questionable moves:

Beauchemin
Exelby

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04-11-2010, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by lapniappe View Post
Fisher6 - I've been saying that all season as well. I think realistically, the club was prepared for an offensive shortage, but never in a million years imagined that Toskala would have been so horrendously brutal, that we'd torpedo like we did.

This summer will be very productive I think. Maybe not super incredibly productive, but productive none the less, and I know with endurance training and the like, all the kids will be okay, because the majority of the "kids" had suffered injuries, no training camps, and flues all season.

It's 29th and it sucks, but if you take all of that into consideration and what they've managed to accomplish after the olympics, i'm darned proud of this team.
Yes, a season of two teams.

Pre-Olympics and Post-Olympics.

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04-11-2010, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Volcanologist View Post


This is who I thought of when reading the title of this thread.
Hey nothing wrong with Ann Murray, she's an icon besides getting old is the ONLY way to ensure a long life.

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:23 AM
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thejustinfisher
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Originally Posted by Volcanologist View Post


This is who I thought of when reading the title of this thread.
"Hey Phil Kessel, I've got a whole freezer full of popsicles....


Get yo' fatass back here."

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:31 AM
  #11
Daisy Joy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ULF_55 View Post
If you give Burke credit, you should give him blame.

However, he did not hire the coach.

His best moves:

Phanuef
Giguere
Bozak
Gustavsson

His okay moves:

Kessel
Hanson
Sjostrom

His too soon to tell moves:

Komisarek
Aulie
Caputi

His questionable moves:

Beauchemin
Exelby

To be fair, the article did mention he gives everyone an F, including himself & the coaching staff. I really think, while as Burke is all "I'm satisfied with the coaching, Wilson is not going anywhere," I really believe what is being unspoken is "Until we find someone else who can fit this club, better than he." I don't really see Burke simply firing Wilson to get someone fair to middling. He'll want the best out there for the fit for his club. So I really don't mind Burke waiting on the coaching front.

Beauchamin was not... very good. But I really have to wonder, if it was because he was playing more minutes than he's used to [was he always "top four?"], or a system - like he always ends up pinching - is that a Wilson thing, or a Beauchamin thing, but I still like him, and I think now with Komisarek coming back, that will really push Beauch to be the third paring along with Gunnarson [providing that we don't trade Kaberle]

I don't know if I'd put Sjostrom in the "okay" pile. He really helped the PK since he's been here. For that alone I'd say he's excellent, no?

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04-11-2010, 09:38 AM
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thejustinfisher
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ULF_55 View Post
If you give Burke credit, you should give him blame.

However, he did not hire the coach.

His best moves:

Phanuef
Giguere
Bozak
Gustavsson

His okay moves:

Kessel
Hanson
Sjostrom

His too soon to tell moves:

Komisarek
Aulie
Caputi

His questionable moves:

Beauchemin
Exelby

Before Beauchemin' 08-09 season was cut short due to injury, he put up solid years in Anaheim (including winning a Cup with them). I have no problem with Beauch as a player, although I may have hoped for a bit more out of him. His track record shows he's a useful, solid defender. The only error Burke may have made is signing Beauch to an already crowded blue line. Maybe the money could have gone towards a free agent forward last year, maybe not. I really can't remember last year's free agency pool enough to say.

As for Exelby, he may not have played much, or well, but he came to Toronto in the Kubina trade, and I think everyone was happy to see that 5M/year shed from our payroll. From a management point of view, I personally like the trade.

As for Komisarek, Aulie, and Caputi, I agree it's too soon to tell. So if they don't work out in the future I'll reserve my blame until then. Although... it's hard to knock Aulie when he was part of the package with Phanuef. As you said, Phanuef was one of the best moves.

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:38 AM
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calvo2612
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ULF_55 View Post
If you give Burke credit, you should give him blame.

However, he did not hire the coach.

His best moves:

Phanuef
Giguere
Bozak
Gustavsson

His okay moves:

Kessel
Hanson
Sjostrom

His too soon to tell moves:

Komisarek
Aulie
Caputi

His questionable moves:

Beauchemin
Exelby
i was with you untill his ok moves...he got a young great player who giving the right center will score 50 goals...yes i know draft picks..maybe he could have gotten without the 2nd round pick..but bud...the draft is a crap shoot...is hall as good as stamko?

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:46 AM
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Daisy Joy
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@Fisher6; the only one worth noting to me was Cammaleri and he didn't want to play in Toronto

hee. and of course... the Sedins.

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Old
04-11-2010, 09:58 AM
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Fact is they, management, saw how there goalie got lit up last game of pre-season and from there own admission thought they had to look at their goalie situation and yet still went ahead and made THE trade. You guys make Burke out to be the next coming of christ. For the great move of bring in Dion still remains the monumental mistake of trading away the future again. They dolled out millions on the blue line and had horrendous play from the back end. One right doesn't hide two wrongs. Sure, all you guys will start bring up the college free agents and what a glorious find they are. Hanson only showed up last game of the year. Bozak is a nice surprise but when I sit here and ask myself can I see the combination of Bozak-Kulemin and Kessel and can they hold up through an 82 game schedule and can they in a seven game series beat Pitt, Wash, Car, T-bay, Phy and the answer is no but Bozak will be a decent addition-jury is still out on Hanson. This team has so far to go. This year will mark the fifth year missing the playoffs, third in Burkes tenure but this at the time was a re-tool and not a rebuild. He misunderstood the horrendous shape of this franchise and instead of coming out and saying this team sucked, has no real prospect depth and we are going to build through the draft and this might take five years. He lied to the fans, said they were a playoff bound team this year. Under his own admission, said he was unprepared to trade Thomas Kaberle at last years draft even though that was his most valuable commodity and trading chip. In the last few years I see mistake after mistake, misunderstanding the state of the team sprinkled in with some good moves and a team tight to the cap. Yet I hear that this was not his doing. Was it not his doing to make sure Komisarek was actually healthy before signing him? He didn't want to over-pay Cammileri but it was ok to over-pay for Phil Kessel? For all the right it is hard to look past all the wrong. It is hard to look past other organizations finishing near the bottom and building with potential future stars yet we are devoid of having that luxury. I get sick and tired of hearing we will make the playoffs soon-to hell with the playoffs-you play to win championships and only one team can win every year but do you see the pieces here to compete in future years.

I see you guys believing but this team has far to go. I would not be surprised if the playoff drought goes into 8 and 9 years. Many of the teams in the Eastern Conference already have the pieces in place to compete for championships, where is Toronto's?

I hope you guys are right but history tells me that we are headed down the same path again and we still have a hard lesson to learn. Great organizations are built through the draft, they focus on young talent and add them. Top end talent is found at the top of the draft board, college free agents are nice additions but never to be confused with top end talent. We have consistently traded away our future and this is no more evident than now. Sure you guys will argue that you just don't know what you will get and for the most part you are right but the last six or seven years we are seeing teams doing much better at evaluating talent. I look at Boston, they will have our franchise goalie, probably franchise player in Hall or Seguin and a nice future addition of a high second round pic and a top pic net year. Again. Toronto has always under valued their own draft pics-we are the developmental team for the league and that has not changed.

When will this franchise learn to fix all the problems of the past they need to take two steps back, completely blow it up and begin with new. We will not make the playoffs for atleast 8 years, in that time frame we could have emerged with a strong franchise with franchise players yet we are stuck continually trying to cover yesterdays mistake with today band aid. This is Leaf land, never has changed in 42 years and never will. I read an interesting post from a Flyer fan and his comment was they flyers would trade their 2nd round pic from 2010-2017 for no particular reason and for nothing of value in return. Are we any different, instead we trade away first round talent. I love the Leafs but I look at this objectively and history tells me nothing has changed.

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Old
04-11-2010, 10:03 AM
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mlugia
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You want Burke to take the youngest team in the league and blow it up again?

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04-11-2010, 10:06 AM
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robdicks
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i was with you untill his ok moves...he got a young great player who giving the right center will score 50 goals...yes i know draft picks..maybe he could have gotten without the 2nd round pick..but bud...the draft is a crap shoot...is hall as good as stamko?
the top two picks in the draft arent usually a crap shoot


2008- Stamkos, Doughty
2007- Patty Kane, JVR
2006- Erik Johnson, Jordan Staal
2005- Sidney Crosby, Bobby Ryan
2004-Alex Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin
2003- MA Fleury, Eric Staal
2002- Rick Nash, Kari Lehtonen
2001- Ilya Kovalchuk, Jason Spezza
2000- Rick Depietro, Danny Heatley
1999-Patrick Stefan, Daniel Sedin

This actually isn't as cut dry as I thought it was, and perhaps is more of a crapshoot than i thought, but at the same time you can make legitimate arguments that in 5 of 10 of those years (01, 03, 04, 05, 08) both the first and second overall picks are better than kessel. Then you can make an argument that in 9 of 10 of those years (all but 06) there was a player in the top 2 that was better than kessel.

All that on top of the fact that our '11 pick could end up anywhere from 1st overall- 16th overall. There is also a second round pick. There is definitely potential for this to me one of those "ah ****" deals by the leafs.

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04-11-2010, 10:07 AM
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He should have blew it up when he got here. Refrained from signing expensive free agents and built through the draft. Rolled back ticket prices nominally and told people we need to do this right but he is changing on the fly. We would have all still gone to the game, bought the jerseys and followed them every game. This team is blown up but no high pics to help the franchise move forward. That is the whole idea. Finish near the bottom and have a chance at a top player to help rebuild a franchise. Guys that lead their teams to mulitiple stanley cup appearances come from the top of the board.

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04-11-2010, 10:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robdicks View Post
the top two picks in the draft arent usually a crap shoot


2008- Stamkos, Doughty
2007- Patty Kane, JVR
2006- Erik Johnson, Jordan Staal
2005- Sidney Crosby, Bobby Ryan
2004-Alex Ovechkin, Evgeni Malkin
2003- MA Fleury, Eric Staal
2002- Rick Nash, Kari Lehtonen
2001- Ilya Kovalchuk, Jason Spezza
2000- Rick Depietro, Danny Heatley
1999-Patrick Stefan, Daniel Sedin

This actually isn't as cut dry as I thought it was, and perhaps is more of a crapshoot than i thought, but at the same time you can make legitimate arguments that in 5 of 10 of those years (01, 03, 04, 05, 08) both the first and second overall picks are better than kessel. Then you can make an argument that in 9 of 10 of those years (all but 06) there was a player in the top 2 that was better than kessel.

All that on top of the fact that our '11 pick could end up anywhere from 1st overall- 16th overall. There is also a second round pick. There is definitely potential for this to me one of those "ah ****" deals by the leafs.
I am glad there is someone that looks at this realistically. We have put ourselves farther behind then we want to admit.

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04-11-2010, 10:14 AM
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ULF_55
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i was with you untill his ok moves...he got a young great player who giving the right center will score 50 goals...yes i know draft picks..maybe he could have gotten without the 2nd round pick..but bud...the draft is a crap shoot...is hall as good as stamko?
I'm not rating Kessel here, just the deal to acquire him.

Kessel for Seguin/Hall is an okay move.

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04-11-2010, 10:21 AM
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daveleaf
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I'm not rating Kessel here, just the deal to acquire him.

Kessel for Seguin/Hall is an okay move.
Phill is a one dimensional player that is a defensive liability. I would call him a specialist, great shot, still has not learned the NHL game completely and needs to have other forwards that are strong defensively to hide his poor play in his own end. Is horrible on the boards and too small to use his body. Seguin will be another Duchene and Hall a solid forward who will be better defensively. Both have the potential to be a franchise cornerstone. Kessel a very good one dimensional scoring forward.

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04-11-2010, 10:24 AM
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Fisher6 - I've been saying that all season as well. I think realistically, the club was prepared for an offensive shortage, but never in a million years imagined that Toskala would have been so horrendously brutal, that we'd torpedo like we did.

This summer will be very productive I think. Maybe not super incredibly productive, but productive none the less, and I know with endurance training and the like, all the kids will be okay, because the majority of the "kids" had suffered injuries, no training camps, and flues all season.

It's 29th and it sucks, but if you take all of that into consideration and what they've managed to accomplish after the olympics, i'm darned proud of this team.
Not to demonize Toskala any more than we already have around here BUT...

I honestly cannot recall seeing any goaltender that so many pucks when right through (meaning 5-hole, under his arms, between his skates along the ice, etc.). His personality was all wrong for a young club as well. We were told that he was "unflappable" when JFJ acquired hime from San Jose. Generally that can be a good trait in a goalie... especially one playing on a poor defensive team. In Toskala's case though, the word meant that he just didn't care... didn't care to be in shape, didn't care to practice hard, didn't care to listen to his coach, didn't care to mentor his young partner, didn't care to take responsibility for his own poor play.

One thing that hasn't been said enough about the Leafs' improved results since the Olympic break is that the goaltending had become consistently solid. Maybe it wasn't good enough to let us win when the team played badly... but it also didn't repeatedly torpedo the club when it was playing hard. Though I'm sure that Burke will look to make further improvements to the roster this summer, I'm quite confident that the existing team would be right in the middle of the Eastern Conference playoff hunt next year... mainly because of better goaltending.

Forget about the Kessel deal... JFJ's trade (and subsequent contract extension) for Toskala was an abomination. It provided us with a goalie that no one could win with and also ensured that we couldn't afford to bring in a solid veteran back-up. One side note on that trade... for those that doubt the organization's commitment to dump salary in the minors if necessary... Mark Bell was the first to suffer that fate and he won't be the last (hello Mr. Finger).

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04-11-2010, 10:26 AM
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Phill is a one dimensional player that is a defensive liability. I would call him a specialist, great shot, still has not learned the NHL game completely and needs to have other forwards that are strong defensively to hide his poor play in his own end. Is horrible on the boards and too small to use his body. Seguin will be another Duchene and Hall a solid forward who will be better defensively. Both have the potential to be a franchise cornerstone. Kessel a very good one dimensional scoring forward.

If the Leafs ended up in 12th. place after making this deal would it be better?

They still wouldn't have their pick, so they still wouldn't have got Seguin or Hall.

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04-11-2010, 10:29 AM
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If the Leafs ended up in 12th. place after making this deal would it be better?

They still wouldn't have their pick, so they still wouldn't have got Seguin or Hall.
Do we build to make the playoffs or build to win a championship. Do I think he is a good player-yes but grossly over paid by management. Andrew Reycroft won the most games of any Leaf goalie in one year, does that make dealing Tukka Rask alright......sorry..my keyboard has turned french on me-no question mark symbol.

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04-11-2010, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by The Nic View Post
One thing that hasn't been said enough about the Leafs' improved results since the Olympic break is that the goaltending had become consistently solid. Maybe it wasn't good enough to let us when when the team played badly... but it also didn't repeatedly torpedo the club when it was playing hard. Though I'm sure that Burke will look to make further improvements to the roster this summer, I'm quite confident that the existing team would be right in the middle of the Eastern Conference playoff hunt next year... mainly because of better goaltending.
I put a chart in another post:

PlayerTeamGamesGAASave%
Vesa ToskalaTOR263.66.874
Jean-Sebastien GiguereTOR142.46.915

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Nic View Post
Forget about the Kessel deal... JFJ's trade (and subsequent contract extension) for Toskala was an abomination. It provided us with a goalie that no one could win with and also ensured that we couldn't afford to bring in a solid back-up. One side note on that trade... for those that doubt the organization's commitment to dump salary in the minors if necessary... Mark Bell was the first to suffer that fate and he won't be the last (hello Mr. Finger).
Burke was stuck with Toskala, but I wonder if he had been demoted to the minors and if they had gone with Joey Mac if things would have been any worse?

Financially, it would have been a wash, Joey Mac being on a one-way contract, but it would have cleared cap space.

I doubt Toskala was an incentive in the Giguere trade.

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