Pension Plan Puppets
June 25 2011 11:06AM
The Toronto Maple Leafs spent the first day of the draft on a couple of solid if unspectacular draft picks. They did make a move to grab a player that they coveted in the bruising Tyler Biggs in the 22nd slot from the US National Team Development Program. The Leafs moved the 30th (from Boston) and 39th (their own) seleciton to Anaheim for the right to pick Biggs. Reports suggest that either Pittsbugh or Detroit were intent on selecting Biggs and Detroit's trade out of the first round immediately following the selection lends some anecdotal credence to the theory. Biggs' comparables during the draft telecast - for what it's worth it would be interesting to see how these compare a few years down the line - were Colby Armstrong and Milan Lucic. The former is kind of depressing but the latter is positively mouth watering. While the Leafs have certainly made strides in getting tougher to play against
They then used the pick they received from Philadelphia in the Kris Versteeg trade to draft defenceman Stuart Percy from the Mississauga St. Mike's Majors of the OHL. Percy is a lifelong Leafs fan that grew up in Oakville and played all of his minor hockey in the GTA. He sports the number five because he wants to model his game after Nik Lidstrom's. He was a player that many saw as possibly being chosen with the Leafs' 30th overall pick but the Leafs were higher on him after a strong playoff run.
Below is audio captured by Chris Dilks of Western College Hockey Blog and after the jump are videos of the two newest Maple Leafs.
June 24 2011 02:17PM
From a stand-alone perspective, trading Jeff Carter to Columbus is not a bad trade for the Philadelphia Flyers. Everything that happened afterwards is chaotic, as Flyers General Manager Paul Holmgren laid his team's foundation and future through 2012 on a roulette table.
Where the Jeff Carter trade baffles me is that it meant more than a long contract for salary cap relief, a young roster player (Jakub Voracek) and a couple of picks, one of them #8 in a pretty decent draft. Philadelphia used all the long-term money they save on a piece that they may not have needed. An oft-repeated cliché is that the Flyers were just a goalie away from the Stanley Cup. They haven't won one since Bernie Parent.
June 23 2011 10:03AM
I know the hockey world is swamped with mock drafts and top-30 lists at the moment, but I thought I’d add one more – mine. This is not a mock draft; rather, this is how I rank the players I feel are the top-30 prospects for tomorrow’s draft.
June 22 2011 09:02AM
There are a number of cash-poor NHL teams that are likely scrambling to meet the $48M floor, most notably Florida who have to sign 11 players and spend at least $29.7M dollars to do it. Phoenix, Dallas and the NY Islanders are in similar positions albeit with more players signed.
Just because they're cap rich doesn't make Florida in a rush to acquire garbage like Wade Redden, Chris Drury, or Mike Komisarek, those guys actually need to be paid a lot of money. Instead look for these teams to exploit a CBA loophole for this coming season.
June 21 2011 05:06PM
I want to point you all in the direction of a fantastic bit of research written last week by CIS Blogger and math graduate Rob Pettapiece. Rob expands on research he did into the CHL draft and found that players born earlier in the year were more likely to get drafted than players born later in the year. He divided the players into four camps, 'Q1' through 'Q4' and concluded that, since there were 4.3 times more Q1 players drafted, there are teams that make decisions, particularly in the late rounds, based on player size and strength rather than observable skill.
"If you’re down to “projectability” at that point, rather than stats and performance, then fine, pick the tallest kid if you have no other information about them."