A Theory on the Leafs poor play and trade rumors.

I know what you’re thinking….ARGH….another Leaf article. Sorry but I have to get this out there.

First off it is refreshing to see and hear Maurice get angry with this team. One of the bright spots last night was seeing Maurice loose his mind after pulling Toskala. What is the last team any of us seen that the goaltender was pulled so much for reasons that were not his doing? This is crazy. My buddy looked at me last night when we were watching the game and said…I have never seen a shoddier defensive team in my life. That is saying something as we watched the Colorado Rockies play…and not the baseball team. It is time for everyone to start taking the blame here. From JFJ to Maurice and Sundin to Kaberle , no one playing in a Leafs uniform looks like they have a clue in their own end. I have more of a clue on dollar drink nights then the Leafs do. They look completely lost in their own end.

That being said… Nick Kypreos had a great point today on the radio about this. Yes I said Kypreos. He summarized how I felt in a two minute clip. He said this team looks as though they just don’t care. That they were playing with no heart and no identity. That there is no cohesiveness to the team. He was right. They have no heart and they don’t care.

Think of this. Would you see Colorado, Detroit, or Philly (as examples) get hammered 7-1 and just go through the game like the Leafs have been? Do you think any self-respecting team would let that happen without cracking some heads? Trying to instill some emotion in the team? Of course the answer to all this is no. But the Leafs just play out the game careful to not check someone and ruffle any feathers.

It is this team’s lack of emotion that I find hard to take. They look as though they just don’t care and if they are loosing they just play it out and leave their goaltender out there to get slammed with puck after puck. Toskala already this season has seen more rubber then road kill on the Trans Canada Highway.

It isn’t like the Leafs don’t have character guys. Where is Blake, Tucker, McCabe or any other self respecting teammate? How can they watch Ovechkin put on a celebration after potting a goal in a five to one game? If Wendel Clark , Doug Gilmour, or George Armstrong were playing on this team then heads would be rolling. On both benches!! Seeing a score of seven to one would make Tie Domi go mad and give this team the lift they need to at least make the other team think that the Leafs are not going to roll over and die.

Blake for example would not get away with the effort he is giving lately if Nolan is behind the bench. Maurice needs to fire this team up. Stop playing the good guy. Come in the dressing room before games with some fire and brimstone.

We need Krusty (Tucker) to put on a show like the old days. Get this team woken up out of the comas they are in. Sundin is playing well but leading by example is not working. Stand up in the dressing room and be vocal….yell and scream. Kick some A doule S in there. Even watching this team come out before a game is mind numbing. All their heads down…praying they don’t screw things up.

Bottom line is that this team has no emotion in their game anymore. They don’t care and it is obvious now. If they cared they would start playing with a sense of urgency and desperation. This team simply does not compete night in and night out.

Another thing I wanted to mention was what is in the head of JFJ and Maurice to waive Gamache . They should have waived Devereaux, or Battaglia before this guy. Neither one of them contribute much to the team and are slow of foot. Gamache is younger and has a lot more upside then these two relics. Gamache has great speed at the very least and showed me more talent then either of these two.

But it is another case of JFJ doing his Pat Quinn impression. Size is the only thing that matters in the NHL. Keep the vets as the kids don’t know how to play.
I am having a flashback of the way Sullivan was treated by Quinn. Not that Gamache is another Sullivan…at least not yet anyway as another team has not picked him up yet.

Lastly I see that Eklund has been stirring the pot with rumors that the Leafs are close to a huge trade with Colorado. He said the Leafs were going to send Kaberle and a prospect to Colorado for Svatos, Liles and a pick(it had better be a first rounder). He also said that Phoenix wanted to get both Raycroft and Kubina. I just seen it is on there again today about Leaf trades but he did not mention anyone like past articles. Just thought I would pass this along.

68 Responses to A Theory on the Leafs poor play and trade rumors.

  1. MtlHabs09 says:

    Your username says it all, thank you for a refereshing Leaf article that doesn't fall into the trash category.

  2. TheDonkey says:

    Maybe they just suck.

  3. MtlHabs09 says:


  4. MtlHabs09 says:

    Nice input retard

  5. RealisticLeaf says:

    Maybe you should have submitted this. Thanks for the obvious.

  6. RealisticLeaf says:

    just out of curiosity…what did you like best?

  7. MtlHabs09 says:

    First of all I like your creative metaphors for the Leafs play. I liked the Rockies comment (although the Devils did turn out OK). I liked how you agreed with the Kypreos bit even though I find it was a rare exception from Sportsnet trash (maybe it's because he wasn't on Sportsnet).
    Of course the frequent 7-1 poundings made you bring out Gilmour, who I fell in love with when he came to Montreal, nevermind the fact he was being payed over 4 million to be on the 3rd or 4th line. And the bit about Gamache was refreshing as well, because he deserves to play unlike Devereaux or Battaglia.

  8. RealisticLeaf says:

    Thanks also like what you wrote about Koivu in the other article. Well done!!

  9. muckies says:

    The Leaves care and they try hard, but they have eggshell thin  confidence, certain players don't trust certain players on the ice, and they lack a player on defence that has a excellent hockey brain that can lead the group (a Neidermayer, Lidstrom, Markov, Ohlund type) and clam it down when the other teams have the momentum.

    players like Wellwood are clear examples of floaters that are not in great shape and are given minutes by the coach because there are no other otpions. 

    And they have just enougn skill to get them to the 85-93 point level, maybe they will make the playoffs, maybe they won't.  Leaf fans have to realize what they are and what they have, a team that has not made the playoffs for 2 years. What Did They Expect this season??????????

  10. neilios says:

    Leafs can use one of Canucks defesive minded Dmen the Canucks can use some of the Leafs scoring and Leafs can use a Dman who can play some D.What about a deal something like this.

    To Leafs-MItchell,Cooke,and 1st rounder=5mill
    To Canucks-Kabrele and Stajan=5.2mill

    Halps both teams out the Leafs get more defensive minded and Canucks get some offence.

  11. MtlHabs09 says:

    Welll thank YOU for that compliment lol. I also remember you speaking up on my behalf about a Bernier trade I made. You called it 'realistic' lol.
    And I think I speak on behalf of almost everyone on this site that Saku is a hero for what he has done on and off of the ice.

  12. TheStryker says:

    Very good article. In my humble opinion, this team needs to be blown up. And in my mind there are very few untouchables. Tulusty,Ponikarovski,Kaberle,White,Steen,Stajan

    It’s time to give up on Antropov, even though he has 8-9 goals. He has no heart and rarely uses his size to his advantage.

    McCabe is like Souray, just a guy with a gun. He’s no longer a physical player anymore

    Hal Gill tries hard he just doesen’t have the wheels to play in the new NHL

    Tosakala is still a good goalie, but it’s obvious that with a sub par defense, he turns into a sub par goalie

    Mats… Can’t really bash Mats, but he’s been there for years, and nothing has really changed around him but very ordinary wingers

    Can’t bash Blake either. No matter what he says, the fact that he has cancer, he can’t be fully focused on hockey

    Wellwood is just injured so often you can’t count on him

    So here are a few trade scenarios I came up with. No need to bash them just my opinion

    To Kings for
    Brown,Frolov,2nd pick

    To Penguins for

    McCabe,Tucker,Raycroft,2nd pick
    To Sharks for

    Just my opinion

  13. MtlHabs09 says:

    Just wanted to say that the Kings said they will not trade any prospects so I doubt anyone will get a deal done with them. I like the Pens deal especially, Letang is an awesome young D-Man (maybe since he's my friend's cousin I think that way) and I could see the Pens with Sundin now, HOLY S-H-I-T!!!!

  14. 29teamsrock says:

    ARGH another Leaves artical.
    This gets posted but my editorial about The All Star Game dosen't? This site BLOWS go visit http://www.habsblog.com for a real site.

  15. Clearly says:

    Yeah, lets get rid of a red hot Antropov, a future solid defensemen in Stralman, Toskala who is much better than his stats show; and Wellwood a solid 2nd-3rd liner with soft hands which makes for a good PP.

  16. Duecey says:

    This team needs blown up fast and not just the roster, but the execs upstairs as well. The only way that you can possibly rebuild this team the right way is through the draft. They need to fire Fergie first and get a new GM in there. I'd go with one of the assistants around the league perhaps Jim Nill of the Red Wings. Then have the GM revamp the scouting dept. and get some new blood in there. Lastly, I'd flip half of these so – called "professionals" on the roster for draft picks and let the scouts do their magic.

  17. RealisticLeaf says:

    Sorry if the Leafs are a hot topic and the All Star Game isn't. Didn't mean to upset you. Thought I did a good job of saying what I wanted. But thanks for the honesty.

  18. MtlHabs09 says:

    Or maybe you just can't write or read? This was a very rare strong article from a Leafs fan, and in my opinion itis very simple to get an article posted, I think something like 18 of my 19 have been posted…
    A suggestion from me wold be to proof read it for spelling errors (because too many look ridiculous) and consider the relevancy of the article. And I'm gonna hazard a guess and say that you ripped off James Duthie's idea for a shootout showoff in the All Star game? If you did then just source it and it will get posted.

  19. RealisticLeaf says:

    I have been saying that for the last two years. Glad you noticed it as well. You are right…from the top down…needs to be worked over.

  20. RealisticLeaf says:

    Thanks for the support MtlHabs09. I was thinking the same thing but wanted to be unpartial. Guess we will have to wait for him to be posted. Then treat his article as he does others.

  21. 29teamsrock says:

    LOL but it refered to the fact that the players that were chosen to get vote onto the All Star Team are a joke. 

  22. 29teamsrock says:

    Trust me you made me laugh not upset me in the least. I didn't even waste my time to read what you wrote except for your opening line.

  23. RealisticLeaf says:

    As the article states…i get what they are…just POed with the lack of emotions. Also it was Maurice and JFJ that stated in the media that they were a playoff team and that sucks a lot of people in to believe the same. Still don't feel that they care as their play does not show it.

    thanks for the views…appreciate it.

  24. getzlaf15 says:

    I am not trying to be unrealistic or anything, but if the Leafs make a couple of trades like sending off Kaberle or Sundin you can really get some good prospects or draft picks. I am predicting to Leafs won't make the playoffs so that is a good time to fire GM John Ferguson.

    Who knows, maybe the Leafs could pick up a first round pick or two. Select a guy like Steve Stamkos who in fact picks the Leafs as his favorite team. That would get you rolling. Then use some of the extra money from players traded such as McCabe or Kubina to sign a top free agent centre or winger.

    Here's what they'll look like heading into next season.








  25. wingerxxx says:

    A couple of things….none of us knows what exactly goes on in the Toronto locker room.  So if Sundin isn't standing up in the middle of the room and letting the team have it, not only would we probably not know about it, but expecting a guy to change his demeanor overnight is just not going to happen.  This is where your coaching staff earns their salary.  It amazes me how much criticism Sundin gets, even when he's playing well, which is usually the case.  You can rant and yell and scream all you want, but if you don't back it up on the ice, that's really all it is.  Ranting, yelling and screaming.  The best captains say and do the right things, and back it up on the ice.  Something Sundin has always done. 

    I haven't read that trade rumor involving Colorado, but if the Avs do that trade, they are getting ripped big time.  And I mean, big time.  And I hate to say it, but Liles right now, is a one way defenseman.  I really don't think that he is what the Leafs need.  It just makes no sense for either team.  Giving up on Svatos is also a very stupid idea for the Avs. 

  26. senators101 says:

    Good article.  First, Eklund is an idiot and that trade isn't happening.  Colorado gets ripped off.
    Tucker stinks this year, he can't even throw a body check without falling down himself.  He looks like he has lost the pest in him and can't do anything.  However, you're right.  Somebody has got to step up and do something.  I saw Redden getting emotional in the first game of the season with 2 fights and that alone made up for his sub-par year (last year). 

    The Leafs are plain and simple, too slow.  Why Gamache was waived, I have no idea.  At least he had speed.  That speed difference between Ottawa and Toronto really showed last night.  And that was also ottawa's third game in 4 nights.  The only guy that can't outstake any player on the leafs is Richardson.  Everyone else is as quick or quicker than anyone on the leafs. 

    The 5-1 scoreline actually makes toronto look good.  If ottawa didn't take so many stupid penalties, it looked like it was going to be 8 or 9 goals.  Everytime they scored, they took a dumb penatly or two and lost their momentum.

    Even if Sundin doesn't say anything, because that might not be his personality, someone has gotta step up.  The coach cannot do it all the time.  I'm not a bandwagoner, but I am a Red Sox Fan.  They were down 3-1 in a series this playoff and it was 2 guys (neither of which were captains, but both were older guys) that called a players only meeting and talked about it.  They came back, won the series and the rest is history.

    I watched an interview from Maurice after last night and I liked what he said… I got a lot of respect for this guy.  He said they weren't defensive mistakes, they were bad decisions.  I couldn't agree anymore.  Mistakes happen once or twice.  These errors these defense are making are happening all the time.  But the reason nobody can get in there and light a fire under their asses is because EVERYONE is making the mistakes.  If they aren't going to listen to the coach, they definitely are not going to listen to other players who are playing equally bad.

    Leafs Objective: Sign players that can skate like the wind but those who aren't floaters.  They need a few guys on the Sens like Fisher, Kelly, Vermette.  They should consider signing some old guys to fill a role-playing position (Mcammond).  These guys can add experience and try to fix these youngsters.

    Wrote a lot more than I thought I would.  Anyways, good article again..

  27. RealisticLeaf says:

    Ya EK is always floating rumors….just thought i would pass it on for those who don’t read it.

    Your are pretty much on the same page. Kewl ideas. thanks!!

    Hope your Sens win the cup and bring er back to Canada!!

  28. senators101 says:

    I hope so too lol.

  29. leafy says:

    Trying to examine why the Leafs are playing poorly is like trying to find out why there's crime in society.  It's a highly complex problem.  That's why the good GMs and coaches get paid the big bucks.

    But you hit upon many good points.  Clearly the Leafs look as slow as a 95-year old woman walking through a swamp waist-high in quicksand.  But a lot of this has to do with the team not playing as a unit or in synch, rather than having 20 slow players per se.

    Also, the lack of heart this team shows almost every game is nothing short of pathetic.  Indeed the effort is simply not there from many players.  That's why I agree with several posts that Maurice hasn't been a good fit with this team.  This is absolutely inexcusable.

    Talent wise, the Leafs have some pretty good players on their roster, but the talent is simply not being used effectively for reasons that are still unknown.

  30. KingCanada says:

    Give Welly a break hes had his groin injured for quite some time and the groin is key, not to mention is was his first game back.

  31. KingCanada says:

    PS wether you think Toskala is tradable hes actually untouchable because JFJ has JUST traded for him, gave up 3 picks to get him, he wont just trade him away right after signing him to an extension.

    PS Bernier is also untouchable for the Sharks and wont be traded.

  32. KingCanada says:

    Ive never had an article refused eigther and i aint even that great of a writter if u ask me.  So is habsblog.com a site for wanabe writters who cant write? haha im jus playin

  33. KingCanada says:

    In order to have a shot at Stamkos we have to be one of the bottom 5, duuuuuuuuh.  It dont matter which team he prefers hell play for whoever drafts him unless he pulls a Eric Lindros which is doubtful.

  34. lukeleim says:

    Eklund is so fu*king rediculously annoying. He probably doesn't even have any sources and just makes these rumors up himself. as for the Lineup against the Buffalo Sabres this friday, they will look like this:

    Alexei Ponikarovski – Mats Sundin – Jason Blake
    Boyd Devereaux – Kyle Wellwood – Nik Antropov
    Jiri Tlusty – Matt Stajan – Alexander Steen
    Chad Kilger – Mark Bell – Darcy Tucker

    Tomas Kaberle – Pavel Kubina
    Bryan McCabe (possible) -Anton Stralman
    Hal Gill – Ian White

    Andrew Raycroft

  35. leafsfan86 says:

    You want realistic? Here……WE SUCK. Now if you need me i’ll be watching the Raptors game. Atleast they know the meaning of the word WIN.

  36. leaffaninva says:

    Right now they're playing like senior citizens having sex – Slow and Sloppy

    There is one thing that missing and probably, the cause of all the leaf's woes this season – PRIDE

    Even the bottom dwellers in the standings this young season have not been outplayed 8-1, 7-1, 5-1 every other outing.

    How could anyone, as a player or coach, night out stand in front of the cameras and repeat the same ole "we should have played better, we made a few mistakes blah blah blah blah blah……."

    If the players have already given up on the season then Maurice and (If my prayers come true) JFJ should just outright resign.  There is some talent on this roster and as an old NHL coach (I think Arbor) said "don't worry about what you as a team DON'T have and just deal with what you do".  There are plenty of other teams in the past that have dealt with their own lack of speed, scoring etc. and have changed thier play to at least put out a competative product on the ice and not look like a bunch of pylons.
    At least they're improving by staying out of the box but with no power play to speak of, it's kind of a moot point.  JFJ first mistakes like trading away young talent, making poor long term signings and then, hand picking Maurice to replace Quinn is all coming out to rear it's ugly head.  At least with Quinn behind the bench – we wouldn't be watching the Leafs get blown out every other night. 

    And finally, trading Sundin would just implode any chemistry this team has this season.  He's the one player ever since that first blowout that has improved his defensive play and is racing just as fast as the two "caught pinching" defensemen in getting back to his own zone. 

    Maurice keeps bringing up "OUR IDENTITY" and the lack there of – mark my words, it's a lack of PRIDE that's making this years leafs go out on to the ice every night and "go through the motions" instead of playing like the professionals they're expected to be.

  37. jarcpitre says:

    Nice article and your right, they are not playing with emotion at all. The leafs have great size but don't use it, I mean they have to be one of the softest teams in the NHL right now, making them easy to play against. One of the main problems for instance is the D-man come up dump the puck in and then chase it themselves, when did you ever see this. The only D-man that really stays home is Gill, probably because he knows he doesn't have the speed to get back. White does have potential, but he has to be sat out a game or two in order for it to sink in that D comes first. The Leafs have to play a dump and chase game and force the play down low. The majority of penalties that the Leafs draw are from behind the net and when they are cycling. Woz is not NHL material, honestly I would rather put Belak back there, at least he adds the intimidation and the othe night I thought he played well. Again the Leafs are way too soft and have to start hitting. For some reason the do not respond to Maurice and some changes have to be made.

  38. Milohabs says:

    Good article. I can see your frustration. Although I am a Habs fan, I’ve watched almost every Leafs game this year. I can tell you something as an unbiased observer.

    The biggest problem right now with the leafs is coaching. Most will disagree, but at the end of the day, on paper, this team SHOULD be a playoff team, and having played more games than any other team in the east (meaning EVERY team has games in hand on them) and they are still sitting on the outside in 9th, and showing no signs of improvement. The team is just not responding to the coach at this point, and this is the first and easiest change to make.

    JFJ is another issue, and he will be gone by next year. The problem is, that he’s made some really bad signings that are going to hinder this team for years. Everyone posting above about trades and blowing the team up…..keep dreaming. Very few of these players will be wanted by other teams especially with the contracts, and JFJ certainly isn’t good enough to swing any deals.

    If I am Leafs upper management, I’d fire JFJ tomorrow morning. I’d let the new GM (whoever that may end up being) decide the fate of Maurice. I would trade Sundin at the deadline. many teams would drool to get this guy in their lineup for the post-season and Toronto could demand some decent talent or prospects for him.

    Beyond that, there is not much more that they can do in the short-term. As contracts expire, they’ll have to make smarter signings and really think about what identity this team should have moving forward. I think they need to start building around Kaberle, Steen, Stajan & Wellwood. Problem is that Wellwood is always injured.

    I’d hate to be a Leafs fan right now, and the sad truth is that it willmost likly get worse before it gets any better.

  39. AntropovGoodIToldUSo says:

    This article pretty much sums up how I feel about this team.
    Although I don't view Devereaux as a useless old relic.

    If you are going to get bombed at least have the balls to stand up to them physically.
    Appropriate response is to make some shit happen.
    Show you care. Show your frustration. Show your passion. If you have it.

    Rolling over is for weak cowards! It's good to blow a gasket from time to time you might even inspire your team mates.
    Bell showed a little of it, but it was his first game. Is he the only one with this sort of character on the team?
    If that's the case we are in for another long season of no playoffs and potentially no rebuild.

    This team needs to work hard and possibly play a defensive system.
    I don't care if it's boring as long as they get the 2 points. Win baby!
    That's all, buy in to the team concept or gtfo of here!

    Show us you care! The problem isn't that you lose, it's how you lose and the poor character you show in the process!
    You all look like you don't give a shit!

    WAKE UP!

  40. AntropovGoodIToldUSo says:

    You're f*cked four ways from Friday!

  41. leafsfan86 says:

    I wanna know why all the Leafs fans are *****in’ about our team not winning..like we’re the only losers in the league. Edmonton 5-10-0, Buffalo 5-7-1, New Jersey 5-7-2, Washington 5-9-1, just a few examples. Buffalo and New jersey were both in the playoffs last year but you don’t hear their fans whining like little girl scouts. We are clearly not the only ones. We are one month in and for some odd reason most of the Leafs fans start to panic like it’s the end of the world. PLEASE JUST SHUT THE HELL UP. Let them play the game, if they don’t want to win that’s up to them. I just hope that the Leafs fans with some common sense don’t spend their money on tickets or merchandise until this bull**** turns around.

    Just my 2 cents.

  42. leafsfan86 says:

    RealisticLeaf…i gotta say this…you are THE MAN. The truth is what 99% of Leafs "fans" do not want to hear. I think that's the only way things are gonna change around here. Thumbs up on the article as well. I'm not spending a dime of my money supporting the management until they turn things around. I will go watch the Raptors for the next 10 years if I have to. (I'm not implying it will take 10 years to turn the franchise around)….lol

  43. turdfergusson says:

      Why not blame Sundin? At least a little bit. He's the captain and good captains carry their teams when they need it. Not saying he's floating but this is when a team needs their captain the most to make everyone on the bench say , "holy jeepers, he's 36 and i'm 25. Maybe I should uhh get rolling here."  Mats Sundin has to challenge his players out on the ice in front of everyone not just in the dressing room after a lousy performance. 

      Yes, he is the epitome of class but his teamates have hung themselves on the rope they've been given because of this. If Leaf fans wanna call someone out then look no further than # 13 . 

       Everyone's chewing the coach's ass for treating his players like men and letting Sundin walk between the raindrops . He can't do no wrong in Leaf nation and this is a problem.  

  44. RealisticLeaf says:

    I think you are mistaking frustration with crying. It is the lack of emotion in the team that is killing everyone. The fact the team goes belly up every time the other team scores a goal. No pride in themselves and just sit there to take a beating. I know other teams are getting beaten as well but they are not doing it like the Leafs. Also they are having more pride in their team and not simply going through the motions. From the feedback i am seeing no one till now hit the nail on the head. It is just frustration. The Raptors played well last night eh? They had a nice comeback but Parker who is too cold right now shot the ball too much. LOL

  45. JuicemaN says:

    and then we'll trade all the players we got from those trades to the Penguins for Malkin and Crosby…then perhaps Washington would just give us Ovechkin to be nice, because after all it is the Maple Leafs and everyone wants to play there, so I think Washington would definitely do that.

    After all that is done, perhaps Vancouver would let us use Luongo for the rest of the season while they still pay for his contract.

    After all this is done we could submit a new logo request to Gary Bettman that changes the name of the league and the logo to read TML-NHL – the Toronto Maple Leafs National Hockey League.

  46. JuicemaN says:

    I know it's a tough concept but if you don't want to read a leaf article……THAN DON'T CLICK ON IT.

    I've submitted tons of articles about various topics, if you write it well or make it interesting it will get posted.  Your article obviously was neither.

    Besides, no matter how good your article was written, nobody cares about the all-star game, it's a waste of time and a plain and simple money grabber for whtever city holds the game.

    Maybe that's why it didn't get posted.

  47. JuicemaN says:

    But the all-star game doesn't matter, it means nothing…why would anyone care who gets put on the ballot?

    How about we talk about the actual season and the teams within it…you know; the stuff that actually matters.

  48. JuicemaN says:

    Agreed, I've pretty much said the same thing in my "I'm done with the Leafs" article but I tend to do it in a way that pisses people off.  Realisticleaf cleary did a better job wording his thoughts than I did,

    Great job realisticleaf!

  49. JuicemaN says:

    oh but could you imagine how pissed the entire league would be and how bad the other 5 canadian cities would boo him if he pulled a Lindros and insisted he'd only play for Toronto…man that'd be hilarious.

  50. JuicemaN says:

    You're right, it is coaching, clearly their offensive style isn't working…he hasn't even tried to become a defensive minded team for a couple games to see how it works.

    He's a good coach but not for this team…I read someone pitching the thought of Pat Burns coaching this team and I'm not a fan of bringing back the past but this time I think it would actually make sense.

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