March 30 2012 12:07PM
Getting a good goaltender will go a long way toward fixing the confidence problem. It will be difficult because there will be no good free agents and it will probably cost that high first-round pick Leafs fans are expecting but it’s not impossible. Trading that pick for a good young goaltender such as Jonathan Bernier is worth the risk.
That’s David Shoalts, a national columnist for the Globe and Mail, throwing in his two cents on what the Toronto Maple Leafs should do with what increasingly looks like it’s going to be a lottery pick at this year’s NHL Entry Draft.
March 30 2012 09:08AM
Who knew, but Clarke MacArthur is a member of Tank Nation. Last night’s home game against the visiting Flyers started off as strange as any lately, with a warmup shot from MacArthur going off the knee of Jonas Gustavsson, causing the goaltender to leave the game before the puck even dropped. The Leafs, now ending the season as they started it, without a starting goalie, were forced to give the game to Jussi Rynnas, his first NHL start after coming in to relieve Gustavsson on Tuesday night.
March 30 2012 09:08AM
As all Toronto fans are aware the Maple Leafs have recently been eliminated from playoff contention. Something that we all should be aware of though is that the Toronto Marlies have the sixth best point percentage in the AHL and second best in their conference. They are also heading into the Calder Cup Playoffs.
The Marlies, being the Maple Leafs minor league affiliate, have a lot of young players that aren't quite ready for the big leagues yet on their roster. In fact, they have more first round picks since 2008 on their roster then any AHL club.
Does the Marlies being one of the best teams in the AHL give us a cause for optimism for the Leafs next year? How does AHL success translate into NHL success?
Follow me over the jump to find out.
March 29 2012 08:10AM
I have a theory about alternate universes. It's sort of a combination of Stephen Hawking and Steven King. The short version is that they exist, and chances are, somewhere in one of them, the Leafs are going to win the Cup this year. In fact, there are so many alternate universes out there (10 to the power of 500, which is a lot), that there's probably a universe in which the Leafs have Jessica Alba as an owner, a Russian midget as a coach, and they manage to win the Cup.
But whether scientifically possible or not, it's just fantasy for us here in this universe. Hard times, my friends, hard times are upon us. The Leafs were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs on Tuesday, to a chorus of boos from an empty Air Canada Centre. For the many fans either staying home or expressing their displeasure, the hockey season is done, and their schedules have opened up significantly. But some of us are hockey fans, too, and despite the pain it first may cause, will follow the Stanley Cup Playoffs. I don't know about you, but I am one of those fans. Still, it is hard for me to watch without naturally picking a side. So every year (it's becoming a sad tradition), I've picked a team to follow, and hope they go all the way, if only for the pleasure of saying I was right. Two years ago, I got it right with Chicago. To find out who I'm picking this year, click over the jump!
March 29 2012 06:53AM
Blue and White and the number 13, I love this kid already.
The day after the Toronto Maple Leafs were officially eliminated from the playoffs for the 8th consecutive year they announced that they had signed University of Maine forward Spencer Abbott. The highly sought after 23 year old winger lead his team in scoring this season with 20 goals and 41 assists for 61 points in 39 games. He was named a finalist for the Hobey Baker award, given to the top player in the NCAA. The Toronto Star reported on Thursday the 22 that he would have his pick of NHL teams to sign with. We’ve been told for the last two months that the Leafs are a garbage franchise with no future, no hope of attracting UFAs, and need a major overhaul in order to be competitive. So why the hell did Abbott choose the Toronto Maple Leafs?