April 03 2014 08:59PM
Sometimes hockey reminds you that it's a sport, it's meant to be entertaining, and not meant to be enjoyed as an intellectual pursuit. The Toronto Maple Leafs came into Thursday's game against the Boston Bruins requiring a win, and having an excellent chance to do so facing a tired squad playing their backup goaltender.
Until the very end, the outcome was in doubt. The City of Toronto can finally take a well-deserved pee and quit chewing their nails. A 3-1 lead to the Bruins was washed away amid a flurry of scoring chances in the Maple Leafs end. Starter Jonathan Bernier was hurt and James Reimer had to play his first minutes in a week-and-a-half to protect a one-goal lead. He didn't succeed, but Tyler Bozak, of all people, drew a penalty in overtime and it was Nazem Kadri who got to play hero.
The Leafs are still faintly alive in the 2014 playoff chase.
April 03 2014 01:48PM
Every time the Bruins and Leafs play each other, the Kessel comparisons come out. It doesn't matter if Kessel is playing at an MVP level or not, or even that Tyler Seguin is no longer part of the Bruins organization. Those comparisons aren't fair, but the Leafs need to compete with the Bruins if they ever plan on being successful. And that's something Toronto hasn't done in a long time, and probably won't do for a little while longer.
April 03 2014 12:39PM
No matter how the NHL alters the language of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, you're always going to be able to find ways for teams to pay players more than their rival teams on the free agent market. After the salary cap was introduced, it didn't take long for teams to handcuff themselves by spending lots of money up front on long-term deals that paid players way more than their salary cap hits indicated.
The NHL has taken away the power for teams to do those deals, and perhaps we'll see more deals done up like David Clarkson's, where the money is practically guaranteed to the player by way of signing bonuses, which continue to count against the cap if they get bought out.
Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
April 03 2014 11:52AM
The wave of junior additions continued this morning, as the Toronto Marlies added Fabrice Herzog to the ranks. Herzog had his first practice with the team today, as they prepared for a three-in-three weekend that begins in Utica tomorrow night.
April 02 2014 09:16PM
The Leafs signed a young prospect who will report to the Toronto Marlies and likely take away another AHL player's job. I can't wait to see Don Cherry's Twitter rant about it! What's that? Carter Verhaeghe isn't a college player? Oh. Never mind.
Jeffler wrote a little bit about Verhaeghe's signing earlier today. Months ago, Justin Fisher wrote about Verhaeghe when the Leafs selected him in the third round, 82nd overall in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft.
Let's take a deeper look though.