Mailbag: WE’RE BACK

mailbag2

How long has it
been since I actually bothered with the Mailbag? Well, I had so many questions
in my AskFM inbox that I didn’t have to bother asking for questions this week.
I actually probably have enough of these questions banked to do a couple of
mailbags this week, which my happen if it becomes a slow news week. So be
prepared for short opinions on things!

To submit a
question, send me a tweet, email me, ask me, or leave a comment.

Howdoyoh think Connor brown is going to do assuming he’s with the
marries for the end of his season with the otters?

The Marlies are
being very patient with their CHL additions. Steve Spott mentioned last week
that he wants them focused on their conditioning and understanding of the
team’s systems before fully integrating them, which is encouraged by the depth
at forward. Fabrice Herzog did play yesterday, but that has more to do with the
fact that the team is decimated by injury and had two of the worst games of
their season prior; it wasn’t planned.

if Clarkson was placed on waivers would any team pick him up ?

I’m not convinced a
team would take him at half his salary retained right now. If this bleeds into
next year I’m more than comfortable with calling it the worst contract in NHL
history. In any event, he has a No Movement Clause and can’t be waived.

If Leafs let Bolland walk, is there any chance they take a run at
Stastny? I’d rather have him for 7 than Bolland for 5, and having three solid
centers is so important in todays NHL.

I wouldn’t take a
run at an offensive centre unless they were truly elite. I don’t think he’s
enough of an upgrade over Nazem Kadri to pay him the money he’ll command,
especially when you consider how tight the Leafs are on the salary cap.

Would you say that you’re better at hockey than Colton Orr?

Absolutely not. The
worst player in the NHL is still probably one of the best 2000 active hockey
talents in the entire planet, even the enforcers. I saw Frazer McLaren, who is
of a similar talent level to Orr, goofing around at a practice last week, and
it’s absolutely insane what he can do with the puck. You need to be talented to
get yourself deep into the development system; the transition to an enforcer
typically comes once you level out.

Also, I’m one of
the worst skaters you’ll ever see. Just brutal. 

Should there be a
coachs challenge in hockey? Why/why not

I’d be okay with it, if it had the same rules as challenging an illegal
stick. Basically, if you’re wrong, you get a delay of game penalty. There
are a lot of borderline calls in hockey (it’s such a fast pace game that relies
on one of two guys to be looking at the right spot at the right time), that when
it’s bad and noticeable, you should be able to speak out. To streamline the
process, have a video referee in the press box. You could also use him to track
the performance of the on-ice refs, which is probably why this hasn’t happened
yet.

Can you explain the
playoff format please… I know last year the 1st place team would play the 8th
and so on.. But how does it work this year? Thanks… P.S dont shut up Jeffler!

It’s the same
system as the AHL had for the previous couple of years (they changed to the old
NHL approach last year, go figure). The NHL insists on using the
“Wildcard” approach to explaining it, while the AHL used the
“Crossover approach”

Basically, under
the “Wildcard” explanation, the top three teams in each division make
the playoffs, and the best two teams left over in the conference squeak in.
What this does is set it up so if the fifth place in one division is stronger
than the 4th place team, they take their place in the playoffs.

At this point, it’s
1st in the division vs. Either 4th or the other division’s 5th in the event of
a crossover, and 2nd vs 3rd in the division in the first round. Next round is
the division finals, then the conference finals, and then the finals.

do you anticipate reimer getting traded in the offseason for basically
nothing or do you think the team will actually try to re sign him despite this
recent uptick in fan agression

I can’t seem them
sticking with him. They’re going to need to give him a raise (he’s an RFA), and
with how close they are to the salary cap, and how little he’s played, they’ll
probably shop him instead and bring in a veteran (whether it’s internal and
they go with Drew MacIntyre or they sign a cheap UFA remains to be seen).

do you hate bozak? whats with the beef?

No. I was against
committing to him long term prior to the offseason, because I’m not a fan of
committing to long term deals for depth players. Tyler Bozak is a depth player
who plays well with Toronto’s best players, and for now, that’s fine. I’m
concerned about what happens if they separate him from Kessel; he’s not very
good defensively and we’ve barely seen him without Phil over the years. I don’t think he’s as bad as his biggest critics think (I’ve seen “AHLer” tossed around and that’s moronic), and I don’t think he’s as good as his biggest fans think (I’ve seen “Top 10 in the league” tossed around and that’s also moronic).

But it’s nothing
personal. I’ve said it before; he’s just trying to play the best hockey that he
can and get compensated for it in accordance to the free market. My issue
with his deal is an issue with management, not him. If he succeeds, the Leafs
succeed, so naturally, I’d be down with that. 

That said, I’ve
been told by people close to him that he legitimately hates me, which
I find hilarious. As well, I’ve built this reputation of King Bozak Hater, or whatever, so I’ve just stopepd talking about him.