April 23 2016 12:33PM
Photo Credit: Christian Bonin/TSGPhoto.com
Winning 54 games is great and all, but you know what would be really nice? Winning 69 games. The Toronto Marlies will begin their push towards the Calder Cup tonight when they take on the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in Game 1 of their first-round series. Here's what you need to know.
April 23 2016 10:55AM
One of the challenges of the new era of statistical knowledge in hockey is that there's just so much damn information out there. It's tough to keep up with all of it, and a lot of the time certain data points get glossed over.
One of these data points is Viktor Loov - predominantly a Marlies defenseman this year, whom most seem to have pegged as a C-level prospect. But I was looking over some of the advanced stats for Leafs players this season, and his numbers really jumped out at me.
No, I mean really jumped out at me. As in, "holy s#%$ this guy is way, way, way better than people are giving him credit for".
Let's take a look at some of the numbers so you can get a better idea of what I'm talking about.
April 23 2016 08:00AM
Over the past two weeks, we have profiled the top-10 prospects for the 2016 NHL Entry Draft and how they might fit into the plans for the Maple Leafs. If you've missed any, here they all are in one place.
April 22 2016 01:28PM
After Auston Matthews there’s a steep drop off when it comes to centers in the 2016 draft. Not that the next few options aren’t good, but they are having difficulty climbing into the top ten rankings in draft year that is much deeper on defensemen and power wingers.
One of the centers who could hear his name called early in the draft is Clayton Keller. Keller’s offensive numbers certainly warrant him being considered as he has put up 144 points in 86 games for the US Under 18 Team this year.
April 22 2016 09:22AM
Photo of Garret Sparks via Christian Bonin/TSGPhoto.com. Photo of Christopher Gibson via HartfordWolfPack.com
It's time for the Toronto Marlies to start playing meaningful hockey again. If we're being honest about things, the team has been able to coast with a minimum required effort since taking over the first seed from Wilkes-Barre in mid-December. "Typical Marlies Hockey" began to form, where the team appeared to spend 45 minutes experimenting with new ideas before securing the a win, no matter what the score was when they flipped the switch. They come into the playoffs as arguably the best team in AHL history; certainly, they have the third-best record of all time.
But none of that matters if they can't execute. Remember, this is the same team that was the hottest team in the AHL heading into last year's playoffs, only to get reverse swept by the Grand Rapids Griffins. This year, they'll kick things off against the Bridgeport Sound Tigers in what should be an interesting series.