Leafs prepare for trade deadline

The Maple Leafs wrapped up a couple of days of pro scouting meetings in Tampa Bay this week with an eye to the Feb. 28 NHL trade deadline.

“I remind our guys that anything can happen,” vice-president of hockey operation Dave Poulin said.

“Zdeno Chara has won a Norris Trophy in Boston, but he has also been traded once and signed as a free agent once. The same with a guy such as Marian Hossa.

“In some cases, when a name comes up on our screen, we’ve been watching the player since he was 16. We have a curve and a full ratings scale on them.”

Poulin was joined by senior VP David Nonis, assistant GM Claude Loiselle and pro scouts Mike Penny, Steve Kasper and Rob Cowie. GM Brian Burke dropped by on the last day. Penny and Cowie usually cover NHL and minor pro games in the Western time zones, Poulin and the others in the East.

“By now everybody has seen everybody,” Poulin said. “I saw about 180 games last year, but that’s amateur games as well (those scouting meetings were last week). We’re gathering and deciphering info all the time. If you look at the afternoon Marlie games in Toronto, you’ll see many team scouts there (who then go to watch the Leafs).”

Though all NHL games and some in the AHL are on the tube, Poulin says there is no substitute for scouting a game live.

“The TV camera will only show you what’s happening around the puck,” he reminded. “Most of us will go to a game and sit on the side of the rink that faces the benches. You want to see how the player does away from the puck, what his interactions are with the coach and others.

“Being there also gives our team a presence. A guy like Mike Penny has worked at every level and knows the equipment guys up to the GMs. Steve has been a player, a coach and an agent. Cowie knows so many people in the game.”


176 Responses to Leafs prepare for trade deadline

  1. reinjosh says:

    That's what I thought…Can't answer a simple question. Classic troll move.

  2. reinjosh says:

    Apparently a majority of NHLers agree with you lol.

  3. mapleleafsfan says:

    Yea because Kaberle and gustavsson are so overpaid..

    This is why everyone calls you a troll.. you only come on here to say negative things about the leafs.. there`s never any other comment about any other team.. you flame the leafs more than you talk about the habs.
    get out of here clown
  4. coyotes_bettman says:

    either way your comments make you sound like a moron and I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt that you're not one – women abuse joke, why don't you and Lafleur team up together and crack some homo jokes about Wendel Clark while you're at it.

  5. coyotes_bettman says:

    yeah yeah my mistake! I forgot that it was the same Mike Richards who nearly took David Booth out of hockey with his "late hit" who was talking about respect!

    But thanks for the nod I personally thought that Subban brought the place to life.

  6. canucks4thecup says:

    I guarantee you the leafs WILL NOT have 3 or 4 30 goal scorers this year. Your nuts. Theres no way Kulemin or Macarthur will get their this season sorry buds….Grabo and Kessel thats it


    Islanders have Grabner, Oilers have Hall, Pathers have Kolikov, Flames HAD Iggy but he pulled out cause of family reasons…. Every team needs at least one person at the All Star game.. If they have a guy in the young guns that counts, man I thought you knew a thing or two about the NHL?


    Are you claiming that Kessel makes his linemates better? Ever since the Leafs acquired him they have tanked, and whats with this "limitless potential" he had 55 points last season and this year hes on pace for 57 points!!!

  9. reinjosh says:

    You realize that players don't stop growing at 22 right? No you probably don't

  10. reinjosh says:

    I found my new Bbruins. I'm going to have a lot of fun pissing you off.

    Look how great Montreal is. They had a rookie make it because no one else on the roster was good enough.


    You make yourself sound so dumb.. Carey Price made the team… he had more votes than anyone on the WHOLE Toronto team…


    You're an idiot who doesn't know how to read… I've pointed out "stats" like Boston and Toronto's records since the Kessel trade, I've even pulled DIRECT quotes reinjosh wrote on HTR the day before and after the trade, I also found on HTR archives ALL Leafs fans bashing that trade, see I judge trades on if they made that team better or worse.. Ever since Toronto made that trade, they are actually worse, wereas Montreal has a better record since the Gomez trade…. Plus I've never said the Gomez trade was a good one, I think it was a stupid trade..


    3.29 GAA and a SV% .890 for Gustavsson, and is on his way to the AHL, and 2 goals for Kaberle who is one of the top offensive dman in the NHL… you're right they're not overpaid my bad, I guess Toronto fans have lower standards than the rest…..

  14. mapleleafsfan says:

    You're right.. being on par for over 50 points on a basement team is useless.. There isn't a team in the league who would take kaberle with that massive contract… And yea, under 1.5 million for gustavsson… that's basically the depietro contract.

    I guess Montreal fans are slightly more retarded than the rest…..
  15. hockey_lover says:

    The best part of the draft was listening to Burke cry like a girl when Kessel got picked last. Seriously Burke? Seriously?  Great hockey mind .. cant take anything away from his hockey sense .. but MAN, is he a *****.

    SOMEONE had to get picked last. If it WAS Stasny, Burke wouldnt have said a thing. But because it was Kessel, he comes out with this "the last 5 names should be in a hat" nonsense. Utterly ridiculous and childish. You dont NEED to protect your players ALL the time Brian. Sometimes its OK to just not talk.

    Kessel however, handled it with such "grace" that I have a new respect for him.  I have heard that he is a douchebag in the locker room (mostly from bruins fans, mind you – then he got traded – so who knows) but he handled this situation well. In my personal opinion .. who the heck cares if you are picked last. Oh no .. im 50th best out of 800 players in the league .. how unfortunate. If something like getting picked last at an all star game hurts your ego, you need to get some therapy.

    Its all for fun and the all star game is a joke anyway. It would have been awesome if Kessel would have went up to the podium and said "actually, Im refusing to report to this team" or "hey team staal, can you try to claim me on waivers" or rip off his suit and he's wearing a KHL jersey" .. all with a HUUUGE shit eating grin on his face. THAT would have been so many kinds of awesome.

  16. reinjosh says:

    I was kind of annoyed Burke did that. I understand its his job to protect the players and I know he probably knows how Kessel is going to take it, but yeah you make Kessel look like a little schoolgirl that way.

    I agree with you. I wasn't sure how he'd take it but he seemed perfectly fine. I'm not entirely sure where all the douchebag comments came from because he's always been known as a quite player and those types of guys are rarely douchebags. I also think in scouting reports, he was said to have a good personality, one that helped make him a better. Correct me if I'm wrong but usually douchebag and becoming a better player don't usually go hand in hand.

    I think those options would have been hilarious haha. I like the refusing to report option. Take a shot at the teams, the all-star game and Nabokov lol.

  17. hockey_lover says:

    It makes them BOTH look like school girls. It was just so pointless and childish. Again, SOMEONE had to go last. There were a number of players there that it could have been. It could have as easily been Giroux, Elias, Karlsson, Marc Staal, and Stasny. Without checking the numbers specifically, I would bet all of these guys have relatively the same numbers, within + or – 5 points. Coming last, compared to those guys, is 100% a toss up.

    I understand wanting to protect your players .. but for something like this? For the all star game? There is no need. If Burke was smart and had ANY sense of humor at all, he would have said something like “Its ok .. he’ll score a hat trick in the game as payback” .. again, while smiling a huge grin. Make fun of it for gods sake. Ugh.

    I have no idea man. Again, I dont know what Kessel is like anymore than I know what any other player is like. I heard rumours that the Ottawa dressing room was full of cocaine addicts. OK easy. Yes, its well known that Redden and Emery had their party habits. But the whole room? Likely not. So, I take these rumours about Kessel being a douche with a grain of salt. They seem much more unlikely now that he was so non-chalant about his last pick. He seemed genuinely like “meh, what am I gonna do?” and smiling. I enjoyed it very much.

    All those moves would have been hilarious and also added some sizzle to an otherwise BORING affair. And I think because Phil is on Toronto, it would have gotten the most media attention.

  18. mojo19 says:

    I have to agree that Phil is better than Backes but definitely not better than Eriksson.

  19. mojo19 says:

    I'm reluctant to listen because of that loser Augello, but I'll listen to a bit of later tonight.

  20. mojo19 says:

    Only two players didn't get at least 1 point for Team Lidstrom: Keith Yandle and…. Phil Kessel.

  21. mojo19 says:

    I never heard what Burke said or anything so I'm just gonna comment based on what you guys are saying, but I think Burke maybe was out of line and did come off a bit whiney, but at the same time I think it happened because he genuinely felt bad for Phil, and Burke is an emotional guy so in the heat of the moment he might have been caught letting off a little steam. He also really has a lot invested in Phil so you can see why he might have took this heart.

  22. mojo19 says:

    It would be nice if Cam came back before the deadline, he comes up with some interesting trade idea's and some of the things he writes turn out to be really close to actual deals that are made.

  23. Leafs_the_word says:

    Again, at 23 minutes in, listen to this….


    They address the issue, Kessel is just being made into the media's whipping, even if his GM says something in support of he gets blasted.  The only other player that has taken this much bs is Price and he didn't handle it with the grace Kessel has.

  24. reinjosh says:

    Well I see it more as him trying to protect his investment. I know a lot of people don't like Burke because of his habit of talking but you would be foolish to think it was him just saying things without thinking. When Burke says something, he has a very good reason to do it. He is very good at protecting his players and thats a big part of his job. He is arrogant on purpose. He says things like this on purpose.

  25. Boston_Bruins says:

    Haha funny that his name came up right before that poll was released. Do you remember the percentage he got? It seemed like a pretty decent chunk if I remember correctly. That's gotta be a huge honour for him.

  26. frankinboltonleafs says:

    Leaf fans, (I'm guessing you're a leaf fan), and media eat their own. We'll never win a Cup. Here's the positive to what you wrote: Kessel 0 pts +1….Kesler 0 pts -1. I have a greater respect for Kessel after that ex-game nonsense.

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