November 02 2016 07:00AM
Photo Credit: Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY SPORTS
The Leafs are off to a rough start to the 2016-17 season winning just three of their first ten games, and while the record isn't great so far, the season hasn't been a complete disaster yet. For starters, this team is not as bad as their record might suggest and a lot of that has to do with the fresh new faces on the team.
With that being said, I wanted to take the end of the first month as an opportunity to look at the Leafs player's Game Score more to see which players played good or bad, which ones have been consistent and also the most surprising names based on pre-season expectations.
with Game Score, it's a single number
stat meant to measure single game
productivity and player value
that I developed over the summer. It basically
combines the most important box-score stats and weights them by their relevance to goals. It's not perfect and there's much that is unaccounted for, but it does pretty well for something that is relatively simple to compute and comprehend.
The sample is still incredibly small, but I figure taking a look at the team on a monthly basis could provide some insight into how the team is doing. So without further ado, here's how the Leafs October looked through the eyes of Game Score and some thoughts on it.
October 25 2016 08:48PM
Good news! The Leafs absolutely, 100 percent, did not blow a lead tonight. If I told you that at the start of the game you might be thrilled based on how the start of the season has gone, but alas what they did was much worse. Instead, Toronto decided to spare their fans any heartache by not taking the lead at all and get blown out of the water early instead. The Lightning took a 3-0 lead after one period and never looked back after that, beating Toronto 7-3 on Tuesday night.
October 05 2016 09:58AM
With a week until the season starts (hockey is back!) it’s probably around the time some of you start doing your fantasy drafts. You’re probably scrambling in preparation over who to pick and I don’t blame you, it’s a tough world out there.
The first thing you have to do is some research and we’re actually here to help you with that. First off, you can buy The Daily Faceoff Draft Guide here or my own projections here and that should go a long way in helping you with your picks on draft day. Both are incredible resources and you’d be foolish not to buy them in my expert opinion.
Now that we’ve got the shameless self-promo out of the way, we can go to the next step: which Leafs should you draft?
September 23 2016 12:25PM
Photo Credit: Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY SPORTS
The round robin of the World Cup is over and the playoff stage is about to kick off. What does that mean for the Leafs? Well, it's the playoffs so it means they don't get to play anymore. A little joke, but it's actually true as Nikita Zaitsev is the last Leaf standing. Perhaps he hasn't learned that part of Leafs culture yet.
That makes now the perfect time for some quick analysis of how the Leafs fared during the very short tournament. Many readers were up in arms when site overlord Jeff Veillette did something similar after the pre-tournament games which I thought was a little unfair since it wasn't meant to be a predictive exercise, just a descriptive one.
This one will be much the same, with all the caveats that small sample size randomness brings to the table. To reiterate, this is just a quick analysis of how each player performed, and not how they will perform as a Leaf.
August 29 2016 07:00AM
Phil Kessel was always much-maligned here in Toronto thanks mostly to the cost of acquisition: Tyler Seguin and Dougie Hamilton. The Leafs could've had a truly elite center and a very good d-man, but instead had an elite goal-scoring winger. Whatever you think of the trade now, it was hard to separate at the time Kessel's value on the ice from the cost to put him there in a Leafs uniform (even tough the cost wasn't expected to be that high).
Our fifth rated prospect will likely suffer the same fate. Kasperi Kapanen was the centrepiece to the other Phil Kessel trade, the one that sent him to the Pittsburgh Penguins, and as long as he's a Leaf that's surely what he'll be remembered for and the player he'll be unfortunately compared to. The Leafs turned a house into a red paperclip.
That's probably an unfair analogy for our fifth best prospect, but it's hard to ignore the lineage of how he became a Leaf. Rather than fixate on the past and how he came to be a Leaf, let's focus on what he can become as a Leaf.