As the February 28 trade deadline approaches, the yearly tradition of pondering Tomas Kaberle's future with the Toronto Maple Leafs has been a hot topic in the rumor mill, but there's another dilemma facing general manager Brian Burke.
And that's whether to retain the services of 24-year-old forward, Kris Versteeg.
Versteeg---currently playing on the third-line with Darryl Boyce and Frederic Sjostrom--- is on pace for at least 20 goals and 50 points in just his third full NHL campaign. As Alex Tran mentioned in his blog, Versteeg is valuable in other facets of the game as well.
But the purpose of this blog is not to explain why Versteeg could be a valuable component of the Leafs' r...
February 9th, 2011. This date is the date where in my opinion, Burke made the most pivotal trade of his time with the Maple Leafs. Still, in my opinion, Burke has done a great job retooling this team, and bringing in some great promising future. Lets take a look at some of the bigger moves Burke has made during his time in Toronto...
July 1st - 2009:
- Garnett Exelby
- Colin Stuart
- Pavel Kubina
- Tim Stapleton
Honestly, I don't think anyone won that trade... Toronto now has neither player, and Kubina has trailed off.
July 27th - 2009:
- Wayne Primeau
- 2011 2nd Round Pick
- Colin Stuart
- Anton Stralman
- 2012 7t...
I'll apologize in advance if I'm stepping on Mr. Aldred's toes here. But as a fan of the collegiate game, Toronto's acquisition today of Jake Gardiner from the Anaheim Ducks struck me as ripe for analysis.
If Jake Gardiner was playing in the Dub or the OHL, we'd have a veritable bevy of insiders and scouts already willing to talk about who and what he is. We'd have analyzed the aptly termed "key to the deal" to death. We'd know what to expect out of him. The "centre of the hockey universe" would have heaped praise on his high points or cast aspersions on the still developing parts of his game. Brian Burke's "Vatican of hockey" would have added another statue to its basilica on Bay Street...
Today a good friend of mine took me aside and asked me a few questions, most of them referring to the recent trade of Francois Beauchemin to Anaheim. It wasn’t long before it turned into quite the interview.
To be nice to Leaf fans, nicer than I’ve been lately, I thought I’d let you in on a few things I see going down over the next month, rumours speculation, as well as some analysis on the trade today.
Interview questions of course by a good friend of mine, answers by yours truly.
Q: What do you think of the deal for both sides? (Francois Beauchmin to Anaheim for Joffrey Lupul, Jake Gardiner and a fourth round pick)
A: Definitely a good deal for both teams. Anaheim gets a ...
I can't believe I'm writing a Leafs topic, but I had to say something about this Kessel-Wilson quote war. If a player and a coach don;t speak, there's a problem. The coach's job is to communicate with the team, and if this doesn't happen, even with one player, the team crumbles. The Leafs are a perfect example.
But I don't want to debate whether or not it was Kessel's fault or Wilson's fault. I don't really care who's to blame to be honest. But what I did realize is that the Leafs need something new like Kessel said. Let's get crazy here. Hypothetically, let's say Wilson gets canned at the end of the season (that would never happen would it?).
The most obvious solution is to get rid o...
Attention Leafs fans: Frantically waving your arms up and down and yelling at the television screen while writing Ron Wilson hate mail will not help the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Considering the Leafs have an all-time record of 25-56-6-2 in Buffalo, it's not exactly earth-shattering that the club struggled to contain its Northeast rivals on the scoresheet.
Instead of going through the same old routine and blaming Wilson for each loss and acting as if inconsistency is abnormal for the youngest team in the NHL, let's analyze the Leafs' current condition with some objectivity:
Similar to James Reimer, Jonas Gustavsson began his NHL career with overwhelming support from the Toronto fan b...
If you didn't already know, the Maple Leafs have sent goaltender Jonas Gustavsson down to the Marlies on a conditioning stint. On the surface, this is the right move and something I've advocated for quite a while. (although I feel that Gustavsson needs a full season in the minors, not just two weeks) Yes from the outside this simply looks like an attempt to get Gustavsson his confidence back. While that is mostly true, in two weeks time when the conditioning stint is over, the Leafs are back to their three goaltender situation.
The dilemma is easy to figure out. Out of the three goaltenders the Leafs have, only one of them can be sent down to the Marlies indefinitely. Unfortuna...