Leafs Post-Olympic Report Card

After the Olympic break how are the Leafs doing, how are their players and management doing? I

have compiled a report card to show you:


Jason Allison:A-, people have been criticizing Allison

since the start of the year, but think about this. He

has played in almost every game this year and is going at a point a game pace. So all you critics go

and shut-up!

Eric Lindros:B+,up until he got injured he was playing great hockey. He is due to come back after the Olympic break so playoffs here we come.

Alexander Steen:B, This rookie is having a great year and will be great in Toronto’s future. After his thumb injury his play has dropped and so as his mark.

Matt Stajan:B, Matt Stajan is having a great year and plays his heart out every game. The only problem is that he isn’t capitalizing on good scoring


Mats Sundin:B-, This guy has been dissapointing the

enitre Leafs fans base and management. At a $6.8

million dollar salary he has been under-achieving.

Enough said…

Kyle Wellwood:C+, You must be wondering why he has a low mark. He can skate, shoot, and has great

puck-handling skill but he is a puck hog. Every night

he tries to take the puck through a wall of players instead of passing it. On a 2-1 he always shoots!

Right Wingers:

Nik Antropov:C+, it is really sad when the best right winger on the Leafs is only a C+ player. This guy has just been a dissapointment to all.

Jeff O’Neill:C-, when this guy was brought in he was expected to have a 70-point year, we all know how that is going.

Tie Domi:D, Tie Domi cannot play in the new NHL.

Teams don’t need an enforcer who doessn’t enforce

anymore. Hey Tie, when was the last time you had

a fight.

Marius Czerkawski:N/A, I can’t really give this guy a mark since Pat Quin isn’t playing the guy.

Left Wingers:

Darcy Tucker:A-, he has been over-rated. The only reason he is getting so much hype is because he is leading the Leafs with 30 goals. He’s like 20th in the

NHL. But still, he is having a great year, by his standards.

Alexei Ponikarovsky:B, he is having a career year and leads the league in shorthanded points. Enough said.

Chad Kilger:B, he is finally looking like the 1st round draft pick he is. Message to JFJ, re-sign the


Wade Belak:F, I have one question for the NHL, how

the hell did he get in?


Bryan McCabe:A, his play has dropped over the past few weeks before the break. He still has a great sht but struggled during the Olympics.

Tomas Kabere:A, thank god the Leafs re-signed this guy. He is an offensive weapon and unlike Mcabe is good defensivly.

Carlo Coliacovo:B, to bad he got hurt cause he was playing awesome defensive hockey. He is still young and will be a future all-star.

Ken Klee:B-, He has been very good defensivly. He is the type of defenseman the Leafs need.

Alexander Khavanov:C+, he is having a pretty good

offensive year, uhh…I don’t wanna go on.

Aki Berg:D+, the mark says it all.


Mikael Tellqvist:B+, he is having an awesome year but hasn’t been tested with a head goalie schedule.

But is still having a pretty good year.

Ed Belfour:C+, Eddie, Eddie, Eddie. What happened,

where did the old Eddie go. He has been to in-consistent to get anything above a “C+”

22 Responses to Leafs Post-Olympic Report Card

  1. 92-93 says:

    In some ways, I am hoping the Leafs will lose their next 3 games against the Caps (at home), the sabres, and the sens. the last 2 are locks that they’ll lose. but why would i wish this on my leafs?

    the reasoning circulating around the Leafs is that they are going to keep Belfour as long as they are still in contention and while losing the next 3 games won’t push them that far out of playoff contention, it will maybe put some panic in JFJ to try and trade Allison, Belfour, Klee, etc. – anyone who other teams might want – for some young players in return or picks or whatever.

    now, why would we want to trade these guys? two reasons – with the emphasis on the second one:

    1) it would make toronto a better team in the (near) future if they got a young defenceman like Leopold, or goalie like Toskala, or forwards like Malone and Arnason in return. it would also get JFJ some return on guys who are free agents in the offseason. finally, it would also open up space for the current young guys on the Leafs – especially on D (Harrison, Kronvall, etc.) and in net with Telly.

    2) which leads to my main point: it would make the leafs better NOW!!! yes that’s right, the leafs would win more games this year by playing without these older, slower, players (although Allison i will make an exception for – he has played well).

    if the leafs continue to play inconsistent .500 hockey like they have all year – they’ll miss the playoffs and this current squad aint going to cut it. if they make the playoffs – they’ll lose in the first round. why not take your chances and trade some of these guys?

    what i don’t like about the recent panic among leaf fans and the gloating among non-leaf fans is this: when they were well above .500 earlier in the year, i said that they were too inconsistent and were going to come down soon. and now that they have come down, everyone is shocked – except, of course, non-leaf fans who say the leafs suck even if they are in first place.

    as for the article, a little harsh on Berg – who is a career #6 d-guy and who hasn’t been playing that badly (he is not much worse than McCabe defensively and yet you give McCabe an A, just because he puts up points). Agree with the criticisms of Wellwood, Domi, etc. but at least wellwood has an excuse: he’s a rookie. As for giving Allison an A and Sundin a B – sorry no way. Allison has been good, but poor in his own end. Sundin has been decent in is own end, and just isn’t hitting the net. Still puts up points and is still the Leafs best forward on the ice most nights.

  2. toronto77 says:

    it’s good that wellwood is a hog and that he shoots on a 2 on 1, the leafs always pass on a 2 on 1 even when they having a good scoring chance, it’s always pass, pass, pass. i’d give him a B.

    Eric Lindros- was only playing good when sundin was injured, then since he came back he only had like 1 goal and played like shit, but for the times when sundin was gone i’d let him keep that B+.

    Czerkawski- doesn’t play alot but in the games that he did play in i’d give him a B-. Quinn is an idiot for not playing this sniper.

    Ken Klee- B-? the type of defencmen we need? lol, wow way off, this guy has to go he is slow, and shows a lazy effort. C-

    Harrison and Wozniewski- in the last month playing with toronto they have used thier size to stop players like Jokinen, Lecavalier, Richards, St.Louis. They have really stepped up to help the teams defence. give them both B+.

  3. GoalJudge says:

    I have already published that I think many other players should be moved. But overall I believe that almost everyone has had a lackluster year. I would let go czerkawski, belak, berg, and O’neil just because we could get something more than a bag of pucks. As for Klee, he is old but he is stable. He was the leafs most well rounded and stable player last season, but is now 2 yrs older. He is not bad at #3-4 defenceman and even better at #5-6. he does make more money than these positions dictate but he is up for renewal i believe, and we won’t get much for him outside of a package deal if Toronto were to start dumping.

    I like San Jose’s Toskala, Buffalo’s Biron (unlikey with us still in the run), Pittsburgh has lots to offer as well as Nashville. the most vaulable prospect out their right now in my opinion would be Jussi jokinen, as he puts up solid numbers and is a shoot out genius, this puts him way up in my valuations, especially since Modano is down and Dallas may start a big slide without him.

    Arnason is ok but he is a Center and we already have enough.

    thats enough speculation from me though.

    Overall I think its a fairly accurate evaluation however I still think tucker is overated. People who read my articles and comments will think I’m a hater, but i just think he could be used very well to acquire someone lives up to what we want tucker to be.

    I think that if we miss the playoffs we should dump who we can that is not stable or consistant and get as many 1-2rnd draft picks as we can. this years draft is not considered to be very rich so acquiring picks won’t be hard and could be a good way to acquire a lot of mid-level talent for the future to build a club around. After all this year has proved that even our prospects and back-ups can’t be doing any worse than our starters. Might as well develop.

    but thats Quinns choice.

    Oh what i would give for bowman to come out of retirement, but thats my pipe dream, unlike others who dream of blockbuster trades that make no sense or feasibility,eh, Blue (cough) and (cough) white (cough).

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Burnsy come back for another kick at the can. but thats jsut me.

  4. BleedinBlueEH says:

    Aki Berg should have a higher grade than Klee and Khavanov.

  5. 93213 says:

    Man I totally agree with you. With where we are and what is to be expected. dumping Belfour would be a great idea as so many teams would pay for him.

    And it would most likely make us better now, the worst thing I’ve heard is that Khavanaugh and Klee are healthy….

    The shitty thing i heard is that JFJ has been told to make the playoffs, so he may end up making the usually trade of 2 rookie and a pick for a guy who’ll be injured by the playoffs type of deal the Leafs are famous for.

    which will suck.

  6. 92-93 says:

    i hope JFJ isn’t that stupid and i dont think he is – but i won’t be surprised if he tries to go after a guy like Witt – which makes no sense at all. but i feel for JFJ because of the stupid pressures he is getting from all directions. too bad he can’t just stick to his vision – whatever that is – and rebuild and remain competitive.

    as for Belfour, Spectorshockey.net continually states that ‘the leafs won’t trade belfour unless they are out of contention.’ well guess what, there are only 3 games for the leafs between now and the deadline – so i guess that just won’t happen. i disagree with Spector anyways – having Belfour in net doesn’t necessarily mean that the leafs are going to be any better off down the stretch or in the playoffs! and besides, the leafs aren’t going to do anything magical this year anyways so i just don’t understand this reasoning!!!

    its frustrating that’s all, this stupid logic: “oh, we got to keep Ed, and Klee, and Allison, and etc. etc. just in case we have a shot at winning a couple of games in the first round … and who knows, maybe we’ll beat Philly this year unlike other years, maybe we will be Ottawa , and Carolina, and TB, and Buffalo…”

    it just NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. so why not try and make these moves?

    of course, the thing that might prevent JFJ is the contracts of Allison and Eddie. if that’s the case – fine. but if its a matter of JFJ thinking the leafs have a shot this year – then that is just absolutely retarded.

  7. whitee_boi says:

    What theory did you use to give Steen a B and Wellwood only a C+…They both are equal with 31 points, give Steen credit he’s played 6 less games. Look at the plsu minus. Steen is a -9 where Wellwood is a +5 thats a differential of 14. Also Steen usually plays on the top line with Sundin and Tucker. Where as Wellwood gets tossed around wherever their is room, usually on a line with the likes of Domi and Kilger. I’m not saying Steen doesnt doeserve a B, I’m just saying Wellwood deserves a lot more credit then a C+

  8. 92-93 says:

    lets take a look at the remaining 25 games left for the leafs who are 1 point out of 8th …

    The reality for Toronto is that they’ll have to finish with at least 90 points in order to have a decent shot at 8th or 7th. the bad news is that they might need even more than this, who knows.

    the good news is that teams above them – NJ, TB – could start to fall (although I don’t see TB faltering any time soon). the bad news is that there are no fewer than 5 teams the Leafs are battling with for the final spot: Mtl, Bos, Atl, NYI, and Florida. The last 3 teams I don’t see doing very much (no, not even the Thrashers). It is Montreal and Boston that I am more concerned with.

    The Leafs have to play over .600 hockey the rest of the season to hit 90 points. I think that if they can get the eqivalent of 32 points – for a total of 91 points – over the last 25 games, they’ll not only get 8th, but they might even have a good shot at 7th and maybe even 6th too (depending on the play of TB and New Jersey). that means the leafs have to have any combination of wins and OTLs to get 32 points in 25 games (i.e.: 16-9-0 or 14-7-4, etc.).

    In terms of TIE BREAKERS there is more good news: the leafs have more wins then all the above teams (they only have 5 OTLs). Also, the other tie breaker – points obtained in games against tied teams – they’ve are leading in the season series with most of the teams they are battling with …………………………………………….

    Montreal (Toronto has 7 points while Mtl has 6 … with 3 games remaining)

    NYI (Toronto has 2 points while the Isles have 0 … with 3 games remaining)

    Atlanta (Toronto has won the season series with 8 points and the Thrashers 0 with no games left)

    Florida (Toronto has won the season series with 6 points and the Panthers 0 with only one game left)

    New Jersey (Toronto has won the season series with 6 points and the Devils 0 with one game left)

    Tampa Bay (Toronto is losing the season series with 3 points and TB with 4 with one game left)

    Boston (Toronto is losing to the Bruins with 6 points while the Bruins have 7 … with 2 games remaining)

  9. 92-93 says:

    Lets breakdown the 25 games————————-

    February – March___________________________

    The Leafs end off Feb. with a must win game against the Caps. the Leafs have to beat teams like the Caps and Pens and get the 2 points from these teams. they cannot afford to throw away points and opportunities like these.

    March features 14 games in a span of 25 days (!!!) and begins with a road game against the Sabres and then a home game the next night against the Sens. There is a strong possibility that the leafs will lose both games – sending Leafnation into a frenzy of – ‘fire quinn’ ‘fire JFJ’ ‘trade Sundin’ , etc. but if the leafs can get a point out of these two games or at least compete, that might be a momentum-builder.

    The Leafs then take on the Habs for the first of 3 March meetings in a must-win home game. Once again, back-to-back games occur on a friday and saturday against the Isles and Lightning respectively. the leafs should win both games and should start Telly in one of the two games too. During this week of March 6th – March 12th, the Leafs should win all 3 games and come away with 6 points.

    A crucial must-win home game against the Bruins (making it 4 wins in a row) and then its off for a 3-game road trip in mid-march against 2 tough teams – Rangers and Buffalo – and the Pens. the leafs should try to get at least 4 points on this trip and 6 points in total (which includes the home win against the Bruins).

    The Leafs return home for a game against the Canes. the way Carolina is playing – this game will hopefully feature a leaf team that at least makes it close. A point would be great, 2 points would be amazing (they did defeat Carolina in OT on home ice earlier this year), but the leafs will probably lose this game in regulation.

    The Leafs end off March with a 4-game road trip that will pretty much deterimine if they are in a good position heading into April (re: 7th or 8th) or out of position. The Leafs play the 2 most important games of the month – back-to-back – in Montreal. The Leafs MUST WIN BOTH GAMES THERE – regardless of whether it is in OT or in regulation (although the latter is preferable). They then head to NJ and Philadelphia. Again, a total of at least 2 points are needed from these 2 games.

  10. 92-93 says:

    Breakdown of the 25 games————————-


    If all goes to plan in March, the Leafs head into the month of April with at least 79 points – meaning that they have to get 12 points out of their remaining 10 games (so a combination of 6-4-0 or 5-3-2, etc.).

    April begins tough with back-to-back set against the Sabres. the Leafs need to get at least 2 points out of these two games and this – along with the earlier back-to-back wins in Montreal – will be their toughest accomplishment. They follow their Buffalo game with a must-win game against the Islanders, and a road game against the Bruins and a Saturday night home game against the Flyers. the Leafs need to pull 4 points out of those 3 games against the Isles, Bruins, and Flyers.

    The Leafs then have a must-win home game against the Panthers – who should be out of a playoff spot by this point. They follow that with a must-win away game against the Isles. On Saturday night, the Leafs take on the Sens which will likely result in a loss. The next night they are in Buffalo – again, another loss considering that they are playing in Buffalo. 4 points from these 4 games against the Panthers, Isles, Sens, and Sabres should be a reasonable expectation.

    Finally, the last game of the season are against the cellar-dwelling Pens and Crosby. the leafs must win this game in order to reach the total of 91 points.

    All in all, the Leafs’ remaining 25 games can be broken down into three categories:

    1) 10 games against the cup contenders (Buffalo x5, Ottawa x2, Carolina x1, Philly x2) … with an expectation of 2 total points (a home win against Buffalo in early April).

    2) 8 games against teams in playoff contention (Montreal x3, Boston x2, NJ x1, TB x1, NYR x1) … total of 16 points (all must-win games)

    3) 7 games against teams that the Leafs SHOULD beat (NYI x3, Florida x1, Pens x2, Washington x1) … total of 14 points (all must-win games)

    in the first category, with the exception of the lone home win against buffalo in early-April, any points they get are bonuses and can be used to fill in any points they don’t get from teams in the second and third categories (which are going to happen because the leafs are not going to beat everyone in the 2nd and 3rd categories). this means that the leafs are going to have to find a way to beat the Canes, Sens, Flyers, etc. at some point).

    The third category are all must-win games. these are points that are not ‘easy’ but are definitely games that the leafs have to come away with 2 points. Again, for every loss or OTL against these teams, the leafs have to make it up with a win or OTL point against the contenders in category #1.

    the second category is the most important one. for tie-breaking purposes and for playoff purposes the leafs have to win the head-to-head matches against these 5 teams who are battling with them in the playoffs.

  11. 92-93 says:

    so in review:

    Feb 28 HOME Capitals …win

    Mar 3 AWAY Sabres …lose

    Mar 4 HOME Senators …lose

    Mar 7 HOME Canadiens …win

    Mar 10 AWAY Islanders …win

    Mar 11 HOME Lightning …win

    Mar 14 HOME Bruins …win

    Mar 16 AWAY Sabres …lose

    Mar 18 AWAY Rangers …win

    Mar 19 AWAY Penguins …win

    Mar 21 HOME Hurricanes …lose

    Mar 23 AWAY Canadiens …win

    Mar 25 AWAY Canadiens …win

    Mar 26 AWAY Devils …win

    Mar 28 AWAY Flyers …lose

    Apr 1 HOME Sabres …win

    Apr 3 HOME Sabres …lose

    Apr 5 HOME Islanders …win

    Apr 6 AWAY Bruins …win

    Apr 8 AWAY Flyers …lose

    Apr 11 HOME Panthers …win

    Apr 13 AWAY Islanders …win

    Apr 15 HOME Senators …lose

    Apr 16 AWAY Sabres …lose

    Apr 18 HOME Penguins …win

    but boy i would love to see the leafs beat the Sens just once this year and play real well against the Canes, Sabres and Flyers.

    In terms of precendence … the leafs enter the playoffs as low as they entered them during the 2000-2001 regular season. The Devils finished first in the conference and the Sens second. Behind Washington, Philly, Buffalo, and Pittsburgh the Leafs finished 7th (ahead of Boston). The Leafs went on to sweep the Sens in the first round and then take on and lose to the Devils in the second round (while the Flyers defeated Pittsburgh). will this happen this year? probably not. if the leafs take on the sens the sens will beat them in the playoffs. but it has happened before.

    the key to all of this is that the leafs have to WIN against teams that are around them and below them in the standings. for every point they give up to these teams, the leafs have to make it up by beating or achieving a point against teams like the Senators, FLyers, Sabres, Canes, etc.

  12. 92-93 says:

    “Lindros echoed the team target of 16 wins down the stretch. ‘You look at what you need to get in the playoffs and 90 points is about the standard,” he said. ‘So we have to play .680 or .700 hockey.'”

    well there you have it. i guess i wasn’t that far off in terms of the Leafs goals to make the playoffs.

  13. rcichard03 says:

    khavonov suck really bad

    trade him and berg and klee get some sorta picks and use your kids in the minors like harrison wozy and maby ian white

  14. 92-93 says:

    another bad 2nd period, another bunch of fluky, bad-luck goals, more squandered opportunities.

    what can i say?

    the good news is that it might keep JFJ from being complacent when it comes to trade time.

    in any case, this was a must-win game … and now toronto must win one of their two games on the weekend and that will be tough considering their opponents (Buffalo and Ottawa). hopefully Emery will be starting in net for Ottawa and will be his typical, inconsistent self. but then again, the Leafs could not beat Brent Johnson tonight. i have a feeling that they would even have trouble beating Patrick Lalime.

    good news: TB loses and so does NYI

    bad news: NYI loses to Montreal, and Florida looks absolutely awesome against TB

    should eric lindros be playing considering that he is not that effective and can’t really shoot the puck … NO. but nothing makes sense in leafland nowadays – they send down guys like Harrison and play Khavanov on the top-pairing with McCabe and keep Woz up with the big club.

  15. 92-93 says:

    well, the lost the must-win game against Washington meaning that they had to make up that game with a win against either buffalo or ottawa. and they didn’t beat buffalo tonight so its hopefully a win against ottawa tomorrow. that being said, it would be fitting that any turnaround that could occur with just 23 games remaining would occur with a win against Ottawa – who the leafs are 0-6 against this year. but it is clear that no single game is going to turn things around. the leafs are going to simply bear down and play more consistent and tougher over a stretch of games and build on those games.

    when a team comes out in the 1st period in a game that has the leafs with their back against the wall with playoff implications, and they get outshot 13-3 as well as outworked and outskated … you begin to realize that this Leaf squad simply just isn’t that good. when they can’t play well when their lives depend on it, they’ve got nothing. or so it seems.

    again, the 2nd period kills them and the turnovers in the 2nd period are killing them. they played well for most of the period, but again, towards the end, its the last half of the period that gets them in the end. taking bad penalties and getting bad calls against them are KILLING the leafs right now – especially when they ruin any man advantages against them.

    Telly had a good enough game in net which should make it obvious to Quinn and JFJ that Telly should be the starter from here on in because you go with who keeps you in the games the best. it should – but it won’t. watch Belfour come back tomorrow night and get blown out of the water by the sens. hmmm – maybe in the EIGHTH game against the sens, the leafs can FINALLY put Telly in. he is better than eddie and he is better than Emery.

    Poni continues to play well for the leafs and he – along with steen, stajan, and wellwood – are the future of the leafs. Sundin has 43 points in 46 games but he can only do so much (he was very strong on the puck tonight). its good that Poni is on a line with him, but if the leafs won’t or can’t trade Sundin, they might as well go out and try and get Elias to play by Sundin’s side for the next year or two. again – and here is the point that a lot of leaf fans have trouble understanding because of their original, unreasonable expectations of this leaf squad up until Dec: the play of Poni and Telly in tonight’s game should be enough to brighten these kinds of losses.

    i have said previously that if the leafs lose both games against the Sabres and Sens this weekend – and they probably will – that “Leafnation [will be sent] into a frenzy of – ‘fire quinn’ ‘fire JFJ’ ‘trade Sundin’ , etc. but if the leafs can get a point out of these two games or at least compete, that might be a momentum-builder.”

    this is true. but combined with a Washington loss, the loss to the sabres tonight, and losses against Ottawa and Montreal (making 6 straight losses) – it should probably force JFJ’s hand in trading guys like Belfour, Tucker, Allison, Klee, Berg, and yes McCabe. but i guess we’ll see. Aetherial has said that in the long run losing these games before the deadline might be the best thing to happen to the leafs because it might force JFJ to make such moves and take pressure off him (from MLSE) to keep certain guys in order to make the playoffs and have TWO home playoff dates (geesh).

    that being said, what is interesting is the recent comments by JFJ which suggest that he is really had enough with this Leaf squad. perhaps he is so pissed off that he finally makes a move or at least tries to make a move – any move – by the deadline.

  16. 92-93 says:

    Toronto’s best game in a month. but that doesn’t matter. at this point in the year, there are no ‘good losses’ – they needed to win this one and they didn’t. obviously this sets up the Tuesday game against the Habs the big game of the year. but in my opinion, regardless of what happens, the leafs aren’ t going to make it. they’ll finish 9th – but that’s it. and even if they did make it – they’ll be done in the first round (either against Carolina or – yuck – Ottawa).

    yesterday i said that losses to Ottawa and Montreal “should probably force JFJ’s hand in trading guys like Belfour, Tucker, Allison, Klee, Berg, and yes McCabe. but i guess we’ll see. Aetherial has said that in the long run losing these games before the deadline might be the best thing to happen to the leafs because it might force JFJ to make such moves and take pressure off him (from MLSE) to keep certain guys in order to make the playoffs and have TWO home playoff dates.”

    the fact of the matter is that the leafs were supposed to lose these 2 games – according to my plan and according to most people’s predictions. but it is the Washington loss – and the wins by Montreal in the meantime – that have been so deveastating. the fact of the matter is, if montreal loses their next game against Philly in regulation (a game that represents their game-in-hand against toronto – but Philly is struggling badly lately and especially against the Habs this year) and then lose in regulation to toronto on tuesday night, the situation is that the leafs are 5 points back with both teams having 21 games remaining. by no means is this a terrible situation that the leafs can’t get themselves out of (especially considering the possible trades/moves that could be made which might improve the leafs NOW).

    in the montreal game, the leaf’s best players have to finally play like the best players. it might be the last game for some leafs as well. Hopefully Telly will get the start, but it will probably be Belfour between the pipes (unless he is traded). Sundin has got to continue to play well but he has to put some pucks in the net himself. Allison and Kaberle have got to start scoring again and Steen and Wellwood have to continue playing well too (wellwood has to start scoring some goals too). it is surprising to see the leafs have 5 guys with 40+ points – not to mention 7 with 30+ points. finally, Matt Stajan – a solid player every night – needs to start putting some offense on the board (outside of his wonderful PK work).

    refs were terrible as usual (surprisingly with Shick and VanMassenhoven) – missed high stick in the first few minutes, then the Ottawa goal in the 2nd that shouldn’t have been considering the toronto player that was taken down going the other way.

    Lindros going down is not a surprise and not that big of a blow (although you’ll see some leaf fans consider this as ‘the sign’ that means the leafs won’t make it – LOL). it will put an ineffective/injured guy out of the line-up and give more icetime to those who deserve it. it will also probably be his last game as a Leaf (hopefully). A MORE IMPORTANT INJURY: Jay Harrison going down with an injury with the Marlies. Maybe that means White will come up. maybe that will – for some unfathomable reason – prevent JFJ from trading either Berg or Klee or McCabe. but Harrison BELONGS ON THIS TEAM and now he is done for this year. this is much worst than Lindros going down. Antropov is also gone for a while (hence why i’ve included him as trade bait for next year or in the offseason in my plans)

  17. 92-93 says:

    as for my suggestions for March 9th:

    Tucker to Calgary and Klee for Leopold

    Belfour to Edmonton for Conklin, Ulanov and a pick

    Berg to SJ or TB for draft pick

    However, I do not see Belfour getting traded and Allison NOT getting dealt. I also don’t see McCabe being dealt.





    [injuries: Antropov, Lindros; possible call-ups: Battaglia, Newbury]




    [possible call-up: Wozniewski, White]



  18. 92-93 says:

    wow – talk about a big week. 5 straight losses, NYI a point back, the habs 7 points ahead, TB 9 points ahead, and Boston and Atlanta lurking in between. the leafs next 3 opponents: Montreal, Isles, TB.

    in terms of a short-term outlook, this is a big week for the leafs if they want to make the playoffs. but in the long-term, these 3 games don’t mean much because 1) even if the leafs did make the playoffs they won’t last long 2) the March 9 deadline is – potentially – the most important date for this season considering the opportunities they have to improve their team.

    According to my plan – the leafs have to win all 3 games (preferably in regulation). even if they were to do that, they would still have to make up their loss to Washington with a win against the Canes or the Flyers or Sens when they meet those teams next.

    if the leafs come out of this week with 3 wins, they’ve got 65 points – probably good enough for 9th in the conference and good enough to be within 5 points of 7th and 8th spot. not bad. but still not in the playoff picture.

  19. 92-93 says:

    how many times can a team give a goal in the last minute of a period – or worse yet – in the last second of a period? Well lets see if the Leafs can set a record here. the leafs got some fortunate calls, they got a full 2-man, 2 minute advantage that they didn’t capitalize on in the 2nd period. if the leafs scored on some of these powerplays, it wouldn’t be a one-goal game going into the 2nd.

    at the beginning of the third i thought to myself: if the leafs try to sit on this lead throughout the 3rd (like they’ve done all year long and like they’ve done countless times this year) and not put a lot of shots on Huet in the 3rd (a.k.a. keep playing), then they will lose the game in regulation – easily. why? well Huet is playing behind a horrible Montreal D (always being outshot and giving up 35+ shots on goal) and yet he always keeps them in the game. also, if the leafs sit back, the Habs will eventually get that 3rd goal and probably a 4th. meaning the leafs needed to score at least 2 goals to win this game in regulation. well they did just that – they capitalized on their opportunities in the 3rd on a tired Montreal team. all i know is that these two teams have TERRIBLE defences. the only difference is that Montreal’s goaltending has bailed them out while the Leafs’ goaltending hasn’t (tonight Eddie did the job however).

    the big players were big tonight: Belfour – awesome, Kaberle – glad he is here for another 5 years, Sundin – good AS USUAL (some leaf fans don’t know what they are talking about), and the rookies chipped in too (Ondrus had an chippy and an aggressive game; Steen matches the point total of Prucha in just 4 more games played, and Wellwood becomes the 9th leaf to hit double-digits in goals). Allison – slow and gave the puck away numerous times as usual – yet he still had 2 points (51 points in 57 games).

    so what does this game in mean in the short-term (re: east standings) and long-term (re: trade deadline)???

    well, short-term: the leafs move within 6 points of Montreal for 8th (both with 61 games played). If the Leafs can keep themselves within 4 pts of the Habs, it would be a good idea because they’ve got back-to-back games against them at the end of this month in Montreal. The Isles won and the Bruins lost so the Leafs are a point up on each of them with the Leafs and Isles both playing 61 games and the Bruins with 62 GP (the Bruins next game: Montreal, the Isles: Toronto). The Thrashers were idle tonight and the Leafs are 3 points back with a game-in-hand (and hold the season-series tie breaker in their favour). The Lightning gained two points on the Habs tonight and are still qutie susceptible to falling out of playoff contention (the leafs are 9 points back of TB with a game-in-hand, not to mention a head-to-head match-up this coming Saturday night; the Lightning also have a tough 5-game road trip ahead of them: Buffalo, Toronto, Montreal, and Ottawa).

    Long-term consequences: something tells me that if the leafs lost 10-0 that Quinn, JFJ, and MLSE would still be chirping that the leafs have a shot at the playoffs and the Cup. This win will probably mean that the leafs think that they shouldn’t be sellers … WRONG! The leafs should BE SELLERS AT THE DEADLINE. but they won’t be. i just don’t see it happening and it sucks. I hope Allison, Belfour, and McCabe will be traded – but its not going to happen because either other teams don’t want them (the first two) or the leafs aren’t willing to move them (McCabe).

  20. 92-93 says:

    Good news: Ondrus played and Domi was scratched.

    Bad news: Belfour gets the start and will probably get the start over Telly on Saturday night too. Also, Quinn decided to pair up Kaberle and McCabe – a gruesome pairing to say the least when it comes to playing smart in their own end.

    who had to have a big game: well, Belfour obviously – and he did (except in the shootout – as usual). but besides Eddie – Sundin, Kaberle, Steen, and Wellwood need to continue their solid play. also, Antropov and Stajan need to elevate their game beyond the PK. Sundin made some good plays but didn’t lead the way in OT.

    1st period: seemed kind of lame for a team battling for its playoff life (and playing against a team that has supposedly thrown in the towel in terms of making the playoffs). Good start to the second, finally capitalizing on a PP. i know it was a good ‘road game’ but the leafs needed to get the jump on the Isles and generate more shots on goal. they didn’t, and therefore they went to the Shootout, where they typically lose.

    there was a comment on the radio that ‘the leafs should be grateful that they have gotten it to the extra period to get at least a point. but that is BS. its BS because a team who’s backs are against the wall should not ‘just be happy’ for such a result. they should have won this in regulation. Also, my thoughts going into the OT – if this goes to the shootout, the leafs are toast – the Isles are great when there are no defencemen around and you are given a bunch of breakaways. too bad the refs didn’t see the massive high stick to Steen in OT.

    Sundin – no goal

    Poni – no goal

    Tucker – no goal

    the leafs in shootouts: 2-5

    the leafs if the game goes to OT but not the shootout: 5-1

    Last month I had stated that “The Leafs take on the Habs for the first of 3 March meetings in a must-win home game. Once again, back-to-back games occur on a friday and saturday against the Isles and Lightning respectively. the leafs should win both games and should start Telly in one of the two games too. During this week of March 6th – March 12th, the Leafs should win all 3 games and come away with 6 points. A crucial must-win home game against the Bruins (making it 4 wins in a row) and then its off for a 3-game road trip in mid-march against 2 tough teams – Rangers and Buffalo – and the Pens. the leafs should try to get at least 4 points on this trip and 6 points in total (which includes the home win against the Bruins).”

    well. its not a 6-pt week. at best – with a win at home tomorrow night – they’ll have a 5-pt week. this is simply not good enough at this point. again, the leafs had to have a 4-game win streak going into their road trip next week. now, with their loss to Washington and OTL to NYI, they have to not only win against TB and Boston, they have to pretty much win all their road games next week (not going to happen against the NYR and Buffalo).

    as for the standings, on the whole – bad news on most fronts. 7 pts back of Montreal and 8 pts back of TB. the leafs gain on the Thrashers who lost to Ottawa and are 4 points back with 2 games in hand (just two fewer games and 2 fewer losses).

  21. 92-93 says:

    best game in a month for the leafs. they’ve given up 8 goals in their last 4 games – against tough teams (Ott. Mtl. TB – and not so tough NYI). big games from the big guys. my opinions on Allison keep changing. tonight he was dynamite with Steen and Tucker on his wings. And as for my future plans for the Leafs, from here on in I want Ben Ondrus on the Leafs’ 4th line or as an extra forward. this kid has got everything the leafs need – offensive skills? no. heart, passion, rough play – yes. they have him listed as a RW. as far as i am concerned, i’d rather see him, Suglobov, and Battaglia get a chance with the club then continue to see O’Neill and Domi play on the right side.

    the leafs’ #1 player tonight was clearly Tellqvist. Ondrus was strong as well. do we see a pattern yet? will Ondrus get the nod over Domi or O’neill in the next game – probably not. will Tellqvist get another start over Belfour in the next game – probably not. do we see another patter here? sure Eddie has been OK in his past couple of games, but Tellqvist deserves more starts.

    at this point in my plan that i posted on Feb. 26, the leafs were supposed to have 67 points but because of the loss to the caps and the OTL to the Isles, the leafs have 64 points – meaning that they have to make up those 3 points against teams like the NYR and Buffalo next weekend. Boston is a must-win game on Tuesday. the leafs are at home, taking on a struggling team. it should be a win but nothing is simple with this leafs squad. lets hope harrison and/or Kronvall will be able to play that night.

    the habs won tonight with another Shoutout victory with Huet between the pipes. they are now in 7th, 7 points up on the leafs. TB are 6 points up with the leafs having a game in hand (the HUGE thing about tonight’s game: the leafs win the season series with the Lightning – which is the 2nd tiebreaker, points obtained against a tied team. the leafs have 5 points in 4 games, TB has only 4 points). The leafs are 2 pts back of Atl for 9th with a game-in-hand (the leafs have won that season series as well). the Isles are tied with the leafs for 11th. On Monday the habs take on the Lightning. here’s hoping for a TB regulation win to keep Mtl in shooting distance of the Leafs.

    as for the remainder of this month. next week its Boston, at Buffalo, at NYR. the week after: at Pittsburgh (rare sunday game), Carolina, and back-to-back games in Montreal.

  22. 92-93 says:

    I am curious at how some people hyperbollically dismiss the Leafs’ playoff chances (which are admitedly slim) and yet consider the Thrashers such a serious playoff threat, or even TB – considering that the leafs are only 2 pts back of the Thrashers (with a game in hand) and 6 pts back of the Lightning with TWO games extra left to play?

    oh wait, i know – because they are the toronto maple leafs and they are the most overly-hated and overly-dismissed team in hockey.

    as for tonight’s game, Mats Sundin continues to prove his critics wrong and i am proud to say ‘i told you so’ to all the leaf fans and non-leaf fans who continue to doubt him. 51 points in 51 games this year (i don’t count his 2-minute game against Ottawa when he got hit in the eye as a game like the NHL does). Sundin and Tellqvist were the only reasons why the leafs won tonight – oh, and the Bruins penchant for dumb penalities. its disconcerting that the leafs made so many mistakes on a night that should have been an easy win. but there are no more easy wins i guess in the new nhl.

    McCabe seems to be getting back into his (offensive rhythm) with 19 goals and 59 points. Kaberle continues to be the best passer among defencemen in the NHL adding two more assists tonight for a total of 46 assists and 53 points (the assists are 3rd among NHL D-guys and the point totals are 5th). Also, Allison seems to be hitting his stride with 55 points in 60 games and a few goals in the last couple of games (along with a few turnovers).

    stats aside, the leafs need a better effort against the sabres and Rangers. these two games were predicted to be losses according to my ‘plan’ but with their OTL against the Isles and their loss to the Caps two weeks ago, the leafs need to grab at least a point or two from these two elite squads (meaning an OTL, SOL, or an actual win). then, on sunday, the leafs must beat the Pens to stay on course for challenging for the playoffs in April.

    As mentioned above, the leafs are not that far back of TB and Atlanta but are 5 points back of the Habs for 8th with the same amount of games played. the good news: they have 2 games against the habs left. the bad news: both are in montreal, against hot goalies, AND the habs have ‘easy’ matches before and after they meet the leafs where the Leafs have very difficult games (Rangers, Sabres, Canes, Devils, Flyers, etc.). Also, the Isles just won’t go away. the islanders, right now, are doing precisely what i thought the leafs would do if they traded some of the vets for young guys or to open up spots for AHL guys. they are scoring and winning with those AHL guys (Tambellini for example). the leafs meanwhile are finally using Ondrus and Telly (thanks to what i some reports are calling a bad back for Belfour). hopefully the Leafs will play better in front of Telly for the Sabres game on thursday. oh, and the Sabres have won 7 straight. great.

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