Mailbag: I’m Sleepy

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I’m still getting used to being an adult. Like, having a job that isn’t writing about hockey and stuff. I like what I do, but man, I can count my time slept every night in minutes. I was already sleepless beforehand, but this is a whole different story. That’s enough about me, though – it’s time to answer some questions!

To submit your Leafs or Marlies questions, tweet myself (@Jeffler) or the site (@TLNdc).

@LeafHead2154 asked: Do you think we will lose Matt Frattin if we send him down to minors?

I’m not convinced. He hasn’t done anything particularly outstanding this season, or with the Kings, or with the Blue Jackets. Jerry D’Amigo, the man they traded to acquire him, cleared waivers. Frattin is no longer a particularly valuable asset, and if it came down to it, I wouldn’t hesitate to take the risk.

@leaflover43 asked: How many games do the Leafs have to lose for Randy Carlyle to get fired?

It ultimately comes down to how what the Leafs’ plan of replacement is. Do they have somebody that they want already? There’s an awful lot of Mike Babcock rumours, for example. Or do they genuinely believe that Carlyle is the answer? If it’s the latter, then a firing could happen within days; all it would take is a losing streak of a few games where they look noticeably bad. If its the former? Not until the team approaches the trade dealine, at which point they’ll name Horacek or Spott as an interim.

@Bastulon asked: Do you think the Marlies have a legitimate chance at making the Calder Cup Finals this year, or are there stronger teams in the west

Like in any professional sports league, the playoffs are basically a crapshoot. You can have a “favourite”, but ultimately, any team can go hot or cold for a handful of games. Will they be competitive, though? I think so. The team may not have a ton of “top-end” prospects or “AAAA” players, but there is a lot of players that would be considered good in the AHL to work with, and enough depth to keep things fresh and rotated as the schedule becomes a grind.

@ahume92 asked: I live in Hamilton and get to a few Bulldogs games each year.  You cover the AHL.  Which team(s) should I make a point of seeing?

First thing’s first, something like a sixth of Hamilton’s home games this year are against the Marlies. Go to those. Beyond that, Texas is still pretty awesome after winning last year’s Calder Cup. To go with them, any team that the Bulldogs don’t host more than once or twice. In some cases, it’ll be years before you see those teams again. It’s also worth skimming rosters to see which prospects or former NHLers are in the rosters.