I’m publishing this mailbag at this exact moment in time, because I know what you’re all thinking. Before you admit it, I’ll say it for you – literally anything that you could be doing right now other than watch this awful team get Harlem Globetrottered by the Edmonton Oilers. Seriously, this game should be pay-per-view, with the owners giving back to the ones watching. It’s not, however, so your time is better invested reading this than watching the Leafs.
If you have a question for next week, leave it in the comments, tweet @tlndc, or tweet @jeffler.
@cgaragan6 asked: What would be a reasonable contract offer from the Leafs to David Booth this off season?
Something similar to what he was already getting before. Having a late season hot streak isn’t enough to assume he’s “back”. He was injured throughout the year. His full-season numbers aren’t that great. He needs a mulligan on the “prove it” year before commitment, but with that said, I don’t know if he takes that second attempt over simply trying to ride the wave of a good team.
@Colin_WAtkinson asked: Who should/will the Toronto Maple Leafs draft if they keep the same pick as they’re on pace to select now?
Mitch Marner’s name intrigues me a lot, simply because he puts up stupidly good offensive numbers and, unlike Dylan Strome, isn’t doing so while playing on the same team as Connor McDavid. Not that I think Strome is better or worse (I’ve honestly not seen enough of either to judge).
Noah Hanifin’s name comes up a lot too, but I’ve honestly never seen him play and I haven’t read up enough on him to give you proper feedback.
@Arto_89 asked: What are the Leafs like today, if Matt Frattin scores on that breakaway in Game 7 vs. Boston?
Frattin’s backhand goes in. It’s the biggest personal high he’s felt since scoring the empty netter to confirm a Calder Cup Finals appearance for the Toronto Marlies in the season prior. Unfortunately, he suffers the same fate. He’s so excited in his celebration that he crashes into the boards and shatters his leg, delaying the game for several minutes.
In this time, Claude Julien draws up a strategy, now pulling his goalie at the three minute mark. Boston pours it on, and with 2:47 left to go, make it 5-3. Brad Marchand crashes the net and makes James Reimer dizzy with an elbow to the head, though no penalty is called. Phil Kessel becomes irate and slashes Marchand in the chest. Milan Lucic jumps Kessel and knocks him out. The referees conclude that Kessel agreed to the fight, and consider it coincidental majors, along with a 5 and a game to him for spearing.
The Bruins keep it going, not just tying the game, but winning it in regulation with three powerplay goals. Mikhail Grabovski speaks out about his concussion history and how he feels the Leafs are mismanaging Kessel’s situation, and requests a trade. He gets traded to the Vancouver Canucks with James Reimer and the Leafs’ 2013 and 2015 1st round Picks for Roberto Luongo and Zach Kassian.
The Leafs buy out John-Michael Liles and Mike Komisarek. They still sign David Clarkson, and still acquire David Bolland. With the extra money, they also sign Ryane Clowe. Kessel, not amused with the Leafs’ denial that he has post-concussion issues, waits for the season to play out before deciding on a new contract. Toronto falls into a tailspin, and Kessel struggles.
The Leafs don’t trade him with the feeling that the hope they can sign him on the cheap, but both him and Dion Phaneuf walk away on July 1st. The Leafs resign Bolland and name him their new captain, and trade Jake Gardiner and Nazem Kadri for Erik Johnson and Max Talbot in an effort to shore up the team for 2014/15. Randy Carlyle is fired, and in an effort to re-invigorate the casual fanbase, Doug Gilmour is named head coach.
The season plays out as an absolute disaster, even worse than it already has. The Leafs win 14 games and the draft lottery, and the Vancouver Canucks pick Connor McDavid 1st overall.
Thanks for missing, Matt.
@NickReinholdt asked: Brewer/Kostka/Holzer who would you say has looked the worst as a leaf?
Mike Kostka was in over his head, but played modern hockey.
Korbinan Holzer looked physically capable of playing in the NHL, but in an archaic style that isn’t beneficial today.
Eric Brewer is in over his head and doesn’t play modern hockey. He also makes more money than both. However, he’ll probably play fewer games here than either of the others, so it’s not all bad.
@YakovMironov asked: Who would be better, Phil Kessel with Zach Sill’s heart, or Sill with Kessel’s skill?
@HellblazerVice asked: Who would win in a fight, a Jeffler sized Lawson Crouse, or a Lawson Couse sized Jeffler?