Carlo Colaiacovo

Ok, lots of people seem to think this guy is less then he is… I’m gonna go through a quick analysis of my own… hopefully some of you will see this guy the way I do.

Durability and Injury
Now… lots of ppl, who cheer for whatever team they cheer for seem to think this guy is easily injured. He isn’t.
He has been injured twice, both have been freak injuries.
The first was the biggest one… he tried to hit Varada, came at him really fast, but didn’t deliver the full hit, he clipped Varada, and ended up going spinning into the boards, hitting his temple. doesn’t matter who you are, hitting your temple at the speed he was going will give you a concussion… its simple anatomy and physics. Major concussions tend to lead to Post Concussion Syndrome… which he suffered from in training camp, leading him to be scratched from the lineup at the beginning of the season. Eventually he recoverd from his PCS (a testament to his durability, some players never recover), and got put in the Marlies for conditioning… He got hit in the hand by a shot and broke his thumb… very few players in the NHL can say that they haven’t gotten this type of injury… it’s very common, and has nothing to do with a player being frail or easily injured… it has to do with a piece of frozen, rock solid rubber hitting a joint at 90km/h(or is it mph? i never know)… remember ppl, these shots can knock over goalies, break the plexi glass, and have, in one case killed a young fan in the stands(god bess that kid’s soul)…they’re not to be taken lightly. Colaiacovo plays an extremely physical game, if he where easily injured, he wouldn’t be able to play the way he does.
Open Ice Hits… fun to watch, but this guy can change the pace of a game with one… He’s taken down Bertuzzi, no problem, Comrie, no problem, Guerin, no problem… and he’s had only 2 years in the NHL and isn’t as big as some of the guys he’s plastered… and lets not forget… even in the hit where he got injured… where he only clipped Varada… Varada still had to get some attention in the dressing room, I believe it was stitches but I’m not 100% on that. Even clipping a guy sent him to the dressing room… imagine if he had released the full force of that check on him, instead of the boards… he would have finnished the season with the Leafs, and it would be Varada recovering from Post Concussion Syndrome.
Playing with the Puck
His stats as of now may not show it… but he’s an offensive force to be reconed with. His hits turn the puck over, and he knows what to do with the disc when he gets it. He is still developing, but he’s forming Kaberle’s ability to move the puck into the zone, while also developing McCabe’s ability and willingness to shoot the puck from the blue line. His shot hugs the ice… and moves extremely fast… perfect when playing with guys like Tucker who love tipping shots in…
Playing without the Puck
He has excelent vision on the ice… he always knows where the puck is, and where it’s going… as I said before, he hits really hard… but he does so with regard to positional play. Other physical defensemen, like Danny Markov(another favourite of mine) will leave their position to get a guy… leaving another player open to get to the net… I said earlier that he’s getting Kaberle and McCabe’s skills with the puck… But he already has something much more valuable in a defenseman… Gill’s understanding of positional play… unlike Gill however, He’s good on his skates.
Colaiacovo can shoot, pass, hit, has execlent positional play, and can skate… he has everything you want in a defenseman packaged into a 6 foot 1, 200 pound package, and despite the common belief is not easily injured… in my opionion, it’s not unlikely that in the next few years, he will be taking Kaberle’s spot on the defensive depth chart.

41 Responses to Carlo Colaiacovo

  1. LeafsLegacy says:

    Agreed, I have always had faith in Colaiacovo!

  2. leafmeister says:

    I totally agree and I do believe that we can get Hejduk without trading him. Colarado's D is made of players like Colaiacovo, they do not have a guy like Kronwall. It is hard for me to part with him because I have seen what he can do when he is healthy and he is a swedish pillar of stregth. He is better defencively then Colaiacovo. Then however we would have to throw in White which I am fine with because as long as we can get Hejduk and keep Colaiacovo I am happy. I dream one day that the Leafs will have a top pairing of Stralman and Colaiacovo.

  3. LeafsLegacy says:

    that would be dope

  4. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    While I think Colaiacovo will be a top pair guy in the NHL, he will not take Kaberle's spot on the depth chart.

  5. thegenius says:

    Cola is probably our best defense prospect, trading him to get hejduk would be the stupidest thing JFJ would ever do, cuz when we play the team he goes too he'll score on us, or plaster a good player…of us.

  6. Hoondog2 says:

    I agree.  Colaiacovo has the potential to be a great defenseman.  I have always been 1 of the few supporters of JFJ, but if he trades Cola i'm done with him.  Young prospects like this are what makes it possible to move a higher paid veteran to save cap room.

  7. Nevyn says:

    First things first: If a player has had one concussion calling them injury prone is fair game, no matter how they got it.  No matter how hard a hit it took to give them their first one, having a concussions reduces the threshold it takes to get another. 

    Also, it really doesn't matter how many big injuries he has had.  What matters is that he's 24 and he has 73 career games  (less than a full season).

    His stats are decent but unexceptional, and fair or not, injury prone will follow him around until he manages to play most of a few seasons in a row.

  8. andrizle says:

    Colaiacovo stays.. end of story

  9. toomanymistakes says:

    Very Very good analysis of Coli's game I've liked him ever since the world jrs. way back when in Halifax my what a team check them out an see how many Nhlers there are… 

    anyway back to Coli everything u said is very very true if healthy is a force and with these trade rumos I think other teams are recognizing that with trying to pry him away.. and your right about anothr JfJ would be stupid to trade. Did anyone notice last year when with Mccabe it was Coli not Mccane who would usually be the one covering up the mistakes that Mccabe had (not bashing Mccabe just stating what i saw while watching leaf games) He is truly our number one young player ahead of Steen by a wide margin. I think that JfJ should let the teams Defence be last year was a transitional period for alot of them like Mccabe adjusting too not playin with Kabbs. Kubina adjusting to hcokey mad and we all know he was trying to hard trying to prove his contract later in the season he played his game which was great and yes he is worth the contract yoll see this year Mccabe will be too Gill was a rock on the pk and him and white are perfect Whie takes the puck Gill takes care of the man. 
    Leafs d is in very good shape I don't get those people who say trade Gill,Kubina,or Mccabe cuz just who is going to step in Coli and White have there jobs and will still needthe veteran patner to help them out every now and then they aren't seasonend enough to play with another rookie name one team i the nhl that has rookie parings??? none 
    Kaberle-Kubina = Solid if not should be one of the best 1st d pair in league not joking will handle big minutes 
    Mccabe-Coli = again Solid 2nd pairing Coli will better each game and mccabe will be better two soiid 2nd pair that will handle big minutes as well
    Gill-White =  again solid third pairing will handle the left over minutes efficently and effectivly
     I think A lot of people forget the Lumme and Berg days.. When no lead was safe with those two on the ice 
     For the first time since I became a leaf fan way back when I feel that with any pairing on the ice it will be effective 
    JfJ and P.M dont mess around with The D !!! 
  10. curtman96 says:

    They do have solid D but it would much better to replace an offensive defensemen with a solid defensive defencemen. Offensively I think Kaberle, Kubina, White, and Colaiacavo can carry the load. Although I like Mccabe, I like Kubina better cause he is solid both ways and he is also a bit cheaper and younger. But then again, I dont know if trading Mccabe to the Islanders would be the best idea because if he were an Islander he may hurt us on the PP with Toronto's not so great PK. How many times do we play the islanders next season?

  11. brianc689 says:

    i love colaiacovo and i agree that we should not trade him, but i have to say you are wrong on the injury front…he may only have two major injuries in the NHL, but the guy has been in and out of the lineup in the AHL which has prevented him from developing….i cant say them all because i dont remember them but i know he broke his foot at one point and had other injuries along the way as well…if the guy can stay healthy, he can definitely be a top 4 guy this year, top 2 in a couple years

  12. uniackesquare says:

    First of all, Colaiacovo IS injury prone, his concussin has caused that. A player being injury prone has nothing to do with how strong or how frail they are. It has to do with how easily they get injured, Would could just be from the way they play or from a concussion, which makes it easier for a second concussio to happen.

    And second of all, Colaiacovo isn't good positionally, when he goes to make bigs hit like all of the ones you have seen, he puts the team in a handicap defensive position. In the game where he nailed Guerin, the Starts scored on the same rush. And when he hit Bertuzzi, he left his defensive position and skated towards Bertuzzi who was in the offensive zone. Putting the team in a bad defensive position. Colaiacovo is just another version of McCabe, who may not become as good.

  13. Glucker says:

    do you watch the leafs?(not being a jerk, just asking)

    those few big hits where, I agree, irresponsible… but watching him play for the last 2 seasons, he is always in the right position to stop a play, and is really hard to beat 1 on 1. when he makes a hit that takes him out of position he gets back in position before the other guy gets up… and even if he doesnt… his hits USUALLY end the other team's play, sure, on the rare occasion they may score as a result of one of his plays… this past season i only saw 2 goals that where his fault, and they where in the same game(he had a bad game)… he's getting better.
    as for being injury prone… getting concussions don't mean you're injury prone. If that's the case then Kaberle is injury prone… as with half of the NHL… hell it means I'm injury prone too, i got one playing football(no, not a dumb jock)…. Concussions are easy to avoid, you just have to play smart(in my case, i went head first into a wedge at got hit by 3 guys at once… not that I remember, I was told that when i got up…minor concussion, didn't even notice it until later). Play heads up, make sure you know whats going on around you, and you'll be fine. Colaiacovo's concussion came because he failed to anticipate Varada's movements… he learned from that, won't repeat that mistake again. He's a smart player… he's safe from concussions. Mark my words.
  14. Glucker says:

    i think the way it goes is you play each team in your division 8 times, and each other team in your conference 4 times…

  15. Hockynut says:

    How old are u kid? can you not read an article? are even english speaking? do you even watch hockey????…..his concussion problem was serious at the time but not as serious as lindros or lafontaine where it is going to affect your career it was almost like freak post concussion attack at training camp if u actually watch hockey you would have seen the skill level this guy cometed at when he returned to the lineup

    Second, he isnt good postionally??? his open ice hits remind me stevens and if you can take a guy CARRYING the puck (like how bertuzzi was) and crush him AND get the puck back how is that putting your team in a bad defensive postiton?

    You wasted your time writing what you did especially the last part which im not even going to bother bring up….before you write sumthin be able to back it up and make sure you watch hockey u joke

  16. the_word says:

    Overvalue Colaiacovo much?  After reading the article you make it sound as if he has the shot of McCabe, the soft hands and skating ability of Kaberle and the physical presence of Scott Stevens.  So, the question is do we just give him the Norris next year or make him the first active player inducted into the Hall of Fame?  That's pretty impressive for a guy who has played a full season in the NHL (is he still technically a rookie again this year?).  Oh, and apparently he also the gift of overcoming post concussion syndrome with no long term concern for his health, it just doesn't effect, because his concussions were flukes, where players like Lindros planned their concussions ahead of time.  So Coli's next concussion won't even phase, he won't even miss a shift. 

    I like Coli, he definitely has huge upside, but his game is high risk and high reward.  Both Coli and White are horrible in terms of playing positionally.  If you've watch the Leafs play, you've seen Coli in the crease when pinching and you've seen him plenty of times in the rushing the neutral zone looking to make a big hit.   He may have shown some versatility in his game but, he also shown questionable decision making.

  17. aneesh2K7 says:

    I believe that Colaiacovo is the second best d-man in Toronto defensively next to Kaberle. He made many great plays many of which, stopped sure goals. So I wouldn't trade him because it will affect the team gravely. He is also a steal at only 1 mil. a year. However if a d-man needs to be traded I would want it to be McCabe. McCabe is horrible on defense, and he won't be as productive on the pp as he was in the 2005-06 season. This is because that season no one knew about McCabe's wicked one-timer, nowadays there is someone always guarding McCabe on the pp. So don't expect him to have a huge impact offensively or defensively. McCabe is also earning 7.25 mil. a season for being the leafs 4th best d-man. I think that Kaberle, Colaiacovo, and Kubina are are better d-men than McCabe. So if Toronto needs to trade a d-man JFJ trade him to the islanders seeing as they are the only team that McCabe will waive his NTC to. If a trade dose happen i want it to go like this,

    Islanders get:
    2009 2nd rounder

    Maple Leafs get:
    Trent Hunter
    Chris Campoli

  18. KingCanada says:

    Altho i do like Colaiacovo, i think the best young player in the organisation is Kyle Wellwood, yes hes a little soft but this year is his contract year, watch him explode onto the scene

  19. brianc689 says:

    i dont agree that mccabe is horrible defensively, he does make mistakes but hes not horrible and his cap hit is 5.75 not 7.25….but i agree that if i had to pick one d-man to trade it would be him

  20. DJTOKid says:

    I really don't like the idea of trading away Colaiacovo. All the things said about him in this article are true and the reason I love the way he plays the game. It would be really unfortunate for the leafs to give up on him, even if it was for Hejduk. At the same time people have to realize that one or probly two of the leafs defensemen are going to get moved. So if it happens to be Colaiacovo then we will have to live with it as we always do. But the idea of getting a player like Hejduk is very exciting. Blake, Sundin, and Hejduk would look very nice on a powerplay, plus it would add alot of depth to the leafs forwards. They would be able to roll four lines with the best of them, adn with a little goaltending could very well be contenders instead of the usual pretenders.

  21. micky says:

    You guys have completely lost it!! Hejduk for Colaiacovo??? Why not Crosby for Kubina?? or Iginla for Belak?? Stop Dreaming!!! Colaiacovo is nothing more then a 5th or 6th defenceman.  Remember these comments when he's working for a roofing company in 5 years! 

  22. Pony says:

    He's a risk taker for sure in his decisions but you need a few of those types on your team. Some people say liability, but you don't make the risk where's the reward?

    Those open ice hits are questionable in a positional sense, but it definately makes opposing forwards think twice. I was always taught to never let a team get comfy which is something Coli brings.

  23. Pony says:

    He's already top 4 with top 2 potential. Regardless is Colorado would except such a deal I wouldn't give Colaiacovo for Hejduk.

  24. mojo19 says:

    I agree, CC is a very skilled player and he throws big open ice hits. I love him!


  25. the_word says:

    I don't think Varada will have any hesitation around him, I find it hard to believe players outside of Toronto have heard of him let alone fear him on the ice. 

    As far a risk takers, Kubina, McCabe and Kaberle fill the Leafs' quota for offense from the back end, the Leafs need some sound defensive defensemen of the Hal Gill ilk.

  26. micky says:

    He's already top 4?? sure, on a non-playoff team who missed the playoffs again, or a defence with the likes of kubina, belak, white, gill and wozie.  Hell, I might even crack the top 4.  The reality is that he's 24 and still trying to find his way, stay away from injury's and learn and develop.  He does have potential, however to say that you wouldn't trade him for Milan Hejduk, is basically saying that you know absolutely nothing about the game..or that your a leaf fan, which essentially is the same thing!

  27. micky says:

    welcome to Canada!

  28. Pony says:

    I can garuntee I know more about hockey than your yourself. He's only top 4 on Toronto? Well tell me which teams would he slide down, they're few and far between.

    Let's see what TSN has to say about him,, wow top 4! You can't use injuries against him to say he's less of player. It affects his overall value but not his ability remains the same. When Carlo is in the lineup he is top 4 and is not still trying to find his way as you put it.

    Actually watch the Leafs before commenting fool. I wouldn't want another forward on the downslope of his career in Toronto. Carlo is exactly what I want, solid home grown youth with great potential, something dearly lacking in TO. 

  29. Pony says:

    Im not saying he's known around the league as a feared hitter or that players watch out when his on the ice. What I am saying is after being on the recieving end of one of those hits many times it throws you off your game limiting your effectiveness.

    That's what I like to see in players, taking away the other teams effectiveness, and great hitting can do just that. Oh and for the record Varada did leave for attention after that hit.

  30. the_word says:

    Yeah but Varada came back. 

    Turning the puck over and giving up odd man rushes play to all other teams effectiveness.  You can't simply judge Carlo by the upside of his game.

  31. micky says:

    Listen Moron, please read your own comments before replying!! The TSN article clearly states "top 4 potential"….This means that he has the potential to be a top 4 defenceman….the key word is "potential".  It's been 6 years since his draft year and leaf fans are still talking about "potential"…listen, if he hasn't made a significant impact yet, he probably never will!  Hejuduk is only 28 yrs old and will get you 40 goals consistently.  He is extremely durable and has never missed anytime due to injury…one more thing, Joe sakic has called him one of the games most complete players….You obviously know this, being a real hockey fan and all! keep supporting the leafs, and keeping filling the pockets of MSLE….hey, what's another 40 years loser! open your F****N eyes and smell the coffee!! The leafs will never be a competeive team as along as suckers like you continue to support them. 

  32. Pony says:

    Wow for calling me a moron you sure look like an idiot. I'm not even sure where to start.

    Ok so TSN say career potential as top 4, well they say the exact same thing about Hejduk, career potential first line RW. That must mean he can't be there yet, right? Colaiacovo is already at a top 4 level for skill and ability wise, will injuries prevent him from going further or staying at that level time will tell.

    You're right it has been 6 years since he was drafted and Leafs fans still talk, but it's also been 6 years for Svatos so Colorado fans have nothing to look forward in him. Makes sense.

    Hejduk is 31, check your facts, and never has been a consistent 40 goal scorer as you wisely stated. In 8 years in the NHL he broke the 40 goal mark twice, woah, both on stacked Colorado teams. He's also missed 32 games so far, though very respectable, it hardly qualifies for never missed any time. If Sakic said what he said good for him, back it up with a link.

    So there you have it in Toronto he would be nothing but a filler to come for a few years help out the team but nowheres near put it over the top and then leave. I would much rather keep homegrown young talent and wish that JFJ would bring in some more and build a real cup contender, if you had any sense you'd understand that.

  33. mojo19 says:

    you're wrong micky. Colaiacovo is already a top 4 defensman on a team with very good defensman. You listed Belak and Wozniewski who aren't even top 6 so I'd guess you don't know a lot about the leafs. I'll educate you here. Just to compare with another NHL team we'll use the Avs since they've already been brought up here:

    Leafs top 7 defensman:

    Kronvall/Wozniewski (however you want to look at it)

    Colorado top 7:

    Cumiskey/Finger (we'll see in training camp)

    As you can see, the leafs are much deeper and more talented at this position than the Colorado Avalanche.

    Don't respong back to this comment because I won't respond back to you, its not a debate, its fact, I win.

  34. Pony says:

    It doesn't matter if Varada came back or not the point isn't to injure but to play the body.

    I'm not sure what Leafs games your watching because his positional play is rather good. Even TSN thinks so:

     'Plays a sound positional game and rarely gets beaten one-on-one. Has plenty of offensive upside and puck-moving skills'

    Though I feel that's generous no doubt the kid does effectively judge when to pinch and rush, he still makes mistakes and coughs the puck up too much but not like some of the Leafs other defensemen. As his game matures he should learn better when to make his move and when to sit back.

    Carlo most definately has flaws to his game and is high risk high reward but you look too strongly at the negatives, I'm not only looking at his upside. He's a good two way defenseman with offensive upside that can lay the body, after all he is a plus player.

  35. the_word says:

    I disagree with TSN then. 

    If you've read my posts on this article or post about Carlo on other articles, you'd see that I have given much praise, I'm a fan and think he is one of the few Leafs (along with Wellwood) who has the potential to be something substantial in the NHL.  Carlo has all the makings of a top four defenseman, but he isn't there yet.  All I'm saying is we shouldn't expect him to be an all star or a top two defenseman, he has a long way to go in terms of his development and there are still significant holes in his game.  After reading over some of the post on this article you'd think Coli is Phaneuf, and thats why people get to call Leafs fans idiots. 

  36. micky says:

    The fact that you think Kaberle/McCabe/Kubina/Colaiacovo are better than Lile/Leopold/Hanna/Skrastins really concerns me! Other than HNIC and Coaches Corner, do you even watch hockey? That a boy……keep cheering for 40 years of disappointment!!!! You make Tannenbaum and Peddie real proud! Hey, I have some land in Stayner, Ont  that you should buy!

  37. Pony says:

    Hannan is the only one in that group I would even want on the Leafs. The only defensemen you named with any offensive ability is Liles and his career high of 49 pts is blown away by Kaberle and McCabe's 67 and 68 respectively.  Even Colaiacovo and Kubina can put up good numbers.

    This  goes without mentioning all of TO's top 4 are plus players. Three top 2 defensemen and one top 4. I would take the Leafs D core over the Avs anyday barring Hannan.

  38. micky says:

    Kaberle is the only solid dman on the leafs….just ask JFJ, who has been trying so desperately to trade McCabe and Kubina…without any success!  Too bad every GM in the NHL isn't as smart as you or they'd be lining up to pick-up these 2 pylons. 

    Trust me: Colaiacovo will be working for a roofing company in 4 years! It might even be the same company you're working for!

  39. Pony says:

    Good burn, too bad your not old enough to have a job. This also explains why you know nothing.

  40. Pony says:

    Oh and another thing why do our two 'pylons' have a better plus minus than your D core?

  41. Glucker says:

    I don't think he's currently at that skill level… but i think he has the right influences, and the potential to get McCabe's shot and Kaberle's puck moving, and he's already got lots of physicality. As for positional play, he does make mistakes due to lack of patience from time to time, but he's still young… he's already good, he'll get better.

    I don't quite get what you're saying about the PCS… cuz he did come back from it, and went right back to his old pace…  The concussion he got came on a really weird play… it wasn't that he got hit hard… its that he went spinning into the boards hitting his head hard… it was a freak injury because of a freak play, due to him not predicting how Varada was going to move… I believe he learned from that, and won't get involved in a play like that again…

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