July 18 2012 06:40AM
In our brief search to find the "identity" of the Toronto Maple Leafs, Danny, JP and Ryan posted yesterday about the desire of Torontonians to cheer for a tough, blue-collar team reminiscient of Conn Smythe's desires back during the good ol' days. Today, Andrew Bates, Steve Dangle, Matt Wright and Cam Charron all offer their takes on what it means to be a Toronto Maple Leaf.
If we were to talk about the Maple Leafs "identity" in the John Ferguson Jr. / Brian Burke era, after wiping away tears, we would all come up with the same word: Losers. That's not to say that any of the players were losers, just that when they were put together on the ice they, as a group, formed a loser. Now, losers is a fairly PG word for what the Leafs have been since the lockout and we would like to call them worse names but it's not exactly an identity.
July 16 2012 08:23PM
Hearing the Leafs have put in an offer to G Jonathan Bernier.— Andi Petrillo (@andipHNIC) July 17, 2012
Via CBC's Andi Petrillo.
It isn't much to go on, but it appears as if Brian Burke thinks the price may be right for the Leafs to acquire Los Angeles Kings' backup and former first-round draft pick Jonathan Bernier.
Bernier, of course, has played just 48 NHL games in his career, posting a save percentage of .910 and an even strength save percentage of .913. The NHL average over that span is .921.
July 16 2012 10:54AM
So our fact-finder Rob Pettapiece over at NHL Numbers has written a post about AHL goaltenders. Using a tested and true baseball method of looking at how these goalies did against NHL competition, we can come up with a much better metric than simply "save percentage" for evaluating how they played.
Of course, like most goaltenders, there's still little predictive value, but in the case of Ben Scrivens, say, is there a better goalie than we initially thought? Do we have a goaltender who fared better against NHL competition with the Marlies than he did against AHL competition?
In June, I wrote that Scrivens had the fourth best save percentage among AHL goaltenders who faced more than 1500 shots over the last two seasons.
July 16 2012 06:18AM
The only thing we have to fear is Fehr himself
There's already some absurdist alarmist sentiment when dealing with the NHL's initial proposal to the NHLPA, details of which were leaked Friday night.
The good news for hockey fans is that, unlike the lockout of 2004-05, the NHL's one major demand, a salary cap, was considered a non-starter for the PA. The season was missed, the PA suffered some leadership changes, and they reluctantly agreed to a deal that was a clear winner for the league at the time.
Fast-forward seven years, and the real big issue is how to split a $3 billion pie.
July 13 2012 09:09AM
I wrote a post for the Backhand Shelf this morning that examined the role of the average fighter. I concluded that many regular players in the NHL who accrued a lot of fights also had a specific role on their team. As it happens, Mike Brown had 10 fights with the Maple Leafs last season, but I couldn't speficially determine his role from the advanced stats without some sort of context.
Brown has 19 fights in two seasons with the Leafs, with a record, according to the voters on hockeyfights.net, of 9-5-5. It's a pretty good win percentage, but that hasn't helped the Leafs closer to a playoff spot, nor has it prevented the Leafs' best forwards from getting hit and taken advantage of for their small size.
To take a line from Office Space, "what would you say, you do here"?