January 25 2013 10:25AM
The onset of the NHL season is a distinct point in the schedule that impacts the AHL, as the outflow of players joining their respective parent clubs altered lineups immensely.
The Marlies lost three of their four top scorers, with the graduation of Nazem Kadri along with Mike Kostka with a spot on the Leafs defense. Keith Aucoin was claimed by the New York Islanders.
With the abrupt changes in the roster, I wanted to update the Marlies non-traditional player points breakdowns before a final sweep at the end of the season. The breakdowns are goals by period, and when those goals were scored, for example, tie games, up one goal, down one goal, etc. as well as on and off ice totals.
Below are updated results up to the weekend ending January 20, 2013.
January 17 2013 10:12AM
First, stop hurting your teammates.
Firing pucks and injuring Leafs winger, James Van Riemsdyk is only the latest incident.
Mike Komisarek has not lived up to the $4.5 million cap hit signed as an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2009. That much is crystal clear.
With two more seasons, barring a trade or buy out at the end of the 2013 season – a likely candidate – Komisarek must make adjustments in his game. No longer can he aimlessly seek targets for body contact, he has to change things up.
It’s doubtful he can ever justify the $4.5 million cap, and never did, but with some tweaks and a lower, altered expectation, for a specific role, not the cap hit, he could still be of use.
January 15 2013 09:11AM
The season is less than a handful of days away from opening night, which means poolies have returned to their drafts. As a result, we updated our predictions at McKeen’s Hockey for the entire league.
I figured since we made these updates, it was only fitting to post the Leafs projections for the shortened season.
Originally posted the full season predictions here.
January 10 2013 09:53AM
Dave Nonis takes over the captain’s chair. The logical, soft-spoken Picard to Brian Burke’s brash, histrionic Kirk.
The replacement doesn’t change the mindset, the plan or the framework of Burke’s vision, however difference of opinion between the two friends and former co-workers can be addressed now. Nonis can put his fingerprints over the foundation Burke laid out.
Nonis outright dismissed a tear down of the current state of the franchise. But where is the current team, how did they get here and more important, where are they headed? The clear cut direction isn’t evident at first glance, requiring further thought.
The blueprint for the Leafs tenure behind Brian Burke is similar to the evolution of the Detroit Red Wings, improving in the back offices, scouting and resource staffing, bringing in young players after they finally had that first all important piece, Steve Yzerman.
January 08 2013 10:12AM
I was going to put some thoughts together on the Leafs players in the World Junior Hockey Championships played in Ufa, Russia, but with the imminent opening of NHL training camps, my thoughts drifted into connections for Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly and his NHL readiness and forward Tyler Biggs putting on display his translatable skills.
Before I get into the actual players I have some general thoughts, particularly on NHL readiness, at the World Junior Championships. Draft decisions often take readiness into consideration, and sometimes it’s just a nice surprise (Cam Fowler, Jeff Skinner). Generally, prospects take time (and resources) to develop.
The World Juniors is geared towards older players, normally drafted, and it's a very good test to see a player amongst the best of his peer group in a high intensity, short burst tournament. The top prospects game has a similar effect with a competitive nature, but a one-game small sample that’s more of an audition.