April 14 2015 09:46PM
The Stanley Cup Playoffs kick off tonight and I don't think I've ever seen a bracket more engaging or unpredictable. The first round matchups couldn't have turned out any better, providing us with enough narratives to give a mittenstringer a seizure.
April 14 2015 09:03PM
This was a must win game, and for once, it had nothing to do with implications and everything to do with the quality of opponent. Quite honestly, the Iowa Wild are far from stellar; in fact, they're the worst team in the AHL this year, currently twelve points back of 29th. They don't even have a McDavid to tank for, either! This should have been an easy two points for the playoff-pushing Marlies.
Sixty minutes and two goals later, it appeared to be just that, as Toronto took home a commanding 5-2 win.
April 14 2015 07:00PM
Brendan Shanahan wants you to believe he has a Shanaplan. And while I was a Shanafan of him when he was a player, it really doesn't seem like he knows what he's doing.
April 14 2015 04:00PM
As the old saying goes, coaches are hired to be fired. Peter Horachek was probably the prototypical example of this; his promotion to head coach was labelled as interim from the start, and he was in that awkward spot in between "rising star" and "brand name". It may as well have been a death sentance for his tenure, particularly when you consider the team he was tasked to run.
With all of this said, the past four months have been a highly public audition for him. To ensure a more permanent role in another organization, he had to had to look good behind the Leafs bench. Unfortunately for him, it was a bit of a mixed bag.
April 14 2015 12:18PM
Any time you get two or more people talking about this new rebuild the Leafs are digging in to, you're probably going to hear the word "finally" thrown around a few times. Finally, this team is scorching everything and letting it grow back naturally. Finally, the proper rebuild. The low and slow approach.
If you believe a team puppet like Darren Dreger, even ex-general manager Nonis himself planned this all along. The whole league could see this had to happen, apparently.
But there was a time in the not-too-distant past where the Leafs didn't really have to rebuild, and they could have gotten away with simply building or re-tooling. If you really think about it, this whole thing isn't as overdue as it's being played up to be, and it likely could have been avoided entirely if not for a stretch of arguably the worst "GM-ing" in modern times.