A Monster Mash

The Leafs are up to their old tricks. Remember the days of giving up leads, in 2 goal scoring flurries over a span of two minutes. Well those days aren’t entirely gone. Vesa Toskala let in 17 of 24 shots faced on Sunday night. While some may argue that this is only the preseason, the leafs had a defence corp that was all vets besides Carl Gunnerson (who played well). Meanwhile in 3 periods of play Jonas “the monster” Gustavsson has saved all 22 shots facing him, against a better team. He looked solid, but once again this is nothing to really compare the two goaltenders with.

What we do know is that Vesa was out of shape last year, had his worst year ever, then had surgery to correct all of this. While coming out of the gate with pressure in the goaltender position Vesa hasn’t exactly shined. Of Macdonald, Gustavsson and Toskala, Toskala has played the worst this preseason. So right now our best goalie is an un NHL proven 24 year old.

Meanwhile at forward we have the “frat” pack of Stahlberg, Hanson, and Bozak who have been the big guns for the leafs this preseason who have “deserved a spot” but havn’t “pushed anyone else out of theirs”. Instead Colton Orr will be taking a spot ( I thought the rule was on fighters is that they should be cheap and come from within your own system *cough* Deveaux/Rosehill)

Well on the 7th worst team in the league you think that they would have a lot of open spots. The problem is that Burke would like a playoff team yesterday, not today or tomorrow but last season. So this season he has tried to put one together. The problem?

The last time an 8th placed team won the cup was over 20 years ago. Instead now the leafs will be back into the limbo of not being quite good enough to make it, or just squeaking in, either way two positions that don’t help to “rebuild” a team.

On defence we have 9 NHL defenders plus Gunnarson and Oreskovic waiting for their real shot. Once again no real spots open after signing Beauchemin and Komisarek. The same komisarek who had a career worse plus minus on a better team. 4.5 mil for a checking defenseman with suspect defensive skills is certainly NO bargain.

Basically once again the leafs have mashed together a team in hopes of proving successful, rebuild? Yeah we did that it just takes a new GM, Coach, low expectations and a summer of free agent signings…

79 Responses to A Monster Mash

  1. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    fyi, the reason ovechkin is better than malkin is he's a LW. Malkin and Crosby are Centers. High scoring elite centers are a dime a dozen, wingers are not.

  2. the_word says:

    Conn Smyth and cup ring. As for Mats… Well I'm sure he had a lot of inner beauty.

  3. lukeleim says:

    Oct. 1
    Alexei Ponikarovsky – Mikhail Grabovski – Niklas Hagman
    Viktor Stalberg – Matt Stajan – Jason Blake
    Rickard Wallin – John Mitchell – Lee Stempniak
    Jay Rosehill – Wayne Primeau – Colton Orr

    Tomas Kaberle – Mike Komisarek
    Luke Schenn – Francois Beauchemin
    Ian White – Garnet Exelby

    Vesa Toskala
    Jonas Gustavsson

    Trade Mike Van Ryn to the Columbus Blue Jackets for the Blue Jackets`fifth round draft pick of 2010 and Stefan Legein

    Waive Jamal Mayers


    Trade Lee Stempniak to the Nashville Predators for the Predators`second round draft pick of 2010.

    Viktor Stalberg – Matt Stajan – Phil Kessel
    Alexei Ponikarovsky – Mikhail Grabovski – Niklas Hagman
    Jason Blake – John Mitchell – Nikolai Kulemin
    Jay Rosehill – Wayne Primeau – Colton Orr

    Tomas Kaberle – Mike Komisarek
    Luke Schenn – Francois Beauchemin
    Ian White – Garnet Exelby

    Jonas Gustavsson
    Vesa Toskala

  4. mojo19 says:

    I hate the '04 lightning. Richards' stats were misleading and he is the least deserving Conn Smythe winner of all time.

    I don't feel like getting into this whole thing again cuz I've had this discussion many times on this site and in person with people who have agreed and disagreed with me.

    But do yourself a favour, actually watch Richards play, I mean really watch him, and if you still think he's a good player, we're not friends anymore. I'm sorry, THAT is how strong I feel.


  5. cam7777 says:

    ahh, i see.

    i got owned in that draft.  i got killed in the SOG department. 

    how does it work exactly?  is every shot on goal a point?  and every penalty minute a point?  or do you just get one point for beating out your opponent in that category?

  6. the_word says:

    I'm not going to watch him until he's a Leaf.

  7. mojo19 says:

    ya i hate those kinds of pools. i only like pools for straight points. These pools have a lot to do with luck and who gets a SH goal on a specific night, or who stays active enough to make sure they dress the right guys each day.

    I dont know, to me, picking the guys who will lead the league in scoring is the only kind of pool. Call me old fashioned.

  8. mojo19 says:

    If he becomes a Leaf, I will be a reluctant fan, and I'll boo him at the games.

    $7.8 million cap hit for a 2nd line centre

  9. mojo19 says:

    Wait before you say we should trade Stempniak. He is primed to have a really good year. You'll see.

    But I also feel that the Predators would be the best team to want to pick up a decent scorer. There was rumours that they tried to land Poni at the deadline, so maybe he could be an option.

  10. cam7777 says:

    both deals were reportedly on the table.  given that sundin eventually chose vancouver, i think there's some evidence that suggests that was the case.

    with all the other things we got back in other trades, im sure we could have fanangled the kubina trade to include clowe (who was, at the time, uncertain to play the rest of that season anyways).  people forget that clowe only made a name for himself that year in the playoffs. 

  11. cam7777 says:

    they wanted Poni because he would have had another year left at an ultra-affordable 2.105 million.  Stempniak actualy costs 3.5 million despite his cap hit, and his contract expires at the end of the year.  It is actually more likely they'd be interested in Blake, who has 2 years left after this, and only makes 6 million total.  They don't care about the cap since they'll never breach it.

  12. cam7777 says:

    yea, i don't like that datsyuk isn't a great pick because he doesn't shoot very often, or take any penalties.  if those stats are going to count, there should be a separate area for that or something.  like the tsn draft where everyone takes a rookie.  everyone could take a fighter, a rookie, a pure shooter, and a defensive specialist (+/-).  The rest should just be points.

  13. leafy says:

    I remember him. He was a nut!  Armstrong and Keon are obviously Leaf greats, but the guy was exaggerating like a seven year old.

  14. mojo19 says:

    True, Blake's contract is the most attractive for a team like Nashville, and he's arguably the best player of the three.

  15. leafy says:

    Khabibulin easily could have been MVP. It was one of those years where it was a coin toss.

    Having said that, the 04 Lightning….only for that season….were absolute dynamite.

  16. leafy says:

    Going back to 2004, I was absolutely crushed when Roenick scored that goal to eliminate the Leafs.

    Also, I really believe the Leafs very easily could have won the Cup that in '04 if Alexander Mogilny, Joe Nieuwendyk, Owen Nolen, and Ed Belfour were all completely healthy.

    I think even many Leaf fans don't realize how close the Leafs were in '04.

  17. leafy says:

    I agree, they have to make sure he's too good for that league before they call him up. I'm still wagering he's going to be a good one.

  18. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    i prefer points and wins only leagues…but heres how head to head works;

    Each stat category is its own. you go head to head with 1 playr every week to win as many catagories as you can. datzyuk is actually a great pick because he will be huge in P, G, and A wich makes up 3 stat catagories. Plus he's no slouch in +/-, or PPP.

    so if its me vs you, and theres 12 stat catagories, and you win 7 and I only win 5, then you win the week…get it?

  19. cam7777 says:

    We're not getting a return like that for VanRyn right now.  If he comes in and plays ten solid games – puts up points on the powerplay and is sound defensively – then he will have value again.  Columbus won't be interested unless they are returning salary in the deal.

    There are several teams running with a bunch of youngsters and unknowns in their defensive lineups.  After a month or so, there will be injuries, and ti will become clear that a lot of these guys cannot withstand the toll it takes to go a full 82 game season, and a vet like VanRyn migth look pretty nice.
    I still think Columbus is a good fit, in a three-way with Nashville.  Stralman had a good camp, and Methot and Russell are supposed to see improvement, but none of those guys would be as effective as a healthy VanRyn.  Let's just give it some time, and something will materialize with him.

    The rest of the trades are pretty tricky because they are so dependent on a series of events occurring.  For instance, for Stajan to be traded, the team needs to be in about 10th-12rh place, and Bozak has to be ready to take his job.  They won't move him if they're doing better than that, because you don't trade your veterans when the playoffs are in sight.  They won't trade him if they're outside of 12th either, because he's the best bet for giving the bruins the worst possible pick we can muster.

  20. cam7777 says:

    yea, i got ya.

    i don't know if we're going to be able to agree on an Ovechkin blockbuster…

  21. leafy says:

    You gotta go with Ovechkin. The best player in the league for my money.

  22. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    likely not. usually I play in bigger leagues and am able to find someone dumb enough to take my top players, for a shitload of really good players (Traded spezza for both sedins one year in a big league, almost got rejected).

    Unless someone is willing to overpay for ovie, I'll keep him. He's gonna make me win the SOG category every tyime….

  23. cam7777 says:

    I'm working on a package that may entice you.  You're not getting both Thornton and Sedin though. 

    I think I'm actually pretty satisfied with my crew.  Both Antropov and Wheeler should see most of their stats increase significantly this year.  Wheeler will be counted on all the time in Boston with Kessel out of the equation, and Antropov and Kovalchuk have some pretty sick chemistry.  So I'm set at right wing.

    My left wing is pretty weak wtih David Booth as my only depth behind Daniel Sedin though.

  24. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    the wings are always the trick. You can always pick up defensemen who can rack up PIMS but the wing is tougher to handle.

  25. cam7777 says:

    I imagine that's tough to predict week to week.  Look at a guy like Bryan McCabe and how his PIM's have changed over the last few seasons.  Even a guy like Braydon Coburn – does he put the same stas with Pronger eating up ice-time like a madman?  These guys are going to have weeks where they dominate those stats, and weeks where they are no where to be found.  Tough.  Definitely adds another dimension.

  26. leafy says:

    The Leafs played a good game tonight.  It's not who wins the first game that's important. It's how teams progress from here.

  27. leafy says:

    Matt Stajan is on pace to score 164 goals this year, setting a new NHL record.

    I love looking at stats early on. Stajan tied with Ovechkin for the goal scoring lead.

  28. the_word says:

    Trade him while his stock is high.

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