Category Archives: Toronto Maple Leafs
Toronto Maple Leaf News and Rumors
Luongo’s stock skyrockets after Penguins snap-up Vokoun
Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis took a couple of days off this weekend to go fishing and clear his head for the decision-making process which is about to begin in earnest over the next couple of days. And while he did that, he and his team got lucky.
At least that’s the way it would appear to anyone watching the goaltending situation.
With the Pittsburgh Penguins snaring of Tomas Vokoun from Washington to back up Marc-Andre Fleury for the next two seasons Monday, and Tim Thomas announcing he was going to sit out next season, the chances of improving the return on any Roberto Luongo deal just took a significant leap forward.
Pens GM Ray Shero seemed to catch others who would have liked to consider Vokoun for their own organizations napping with his pre-July 1 strike, giving up just a seventh-round draft pick to leave teams like Toronto, Chicago and Tampa with their pants at half mast. And assuming Thomas does indeed wish to step away from the game as he says, this leaves the number of experienced available goaltenders depleted by two pretty good players.
The Leafs didn’t sign Tomas Vokoun for goaltending insurance. Pittsburgh traded for his rights from Washington and then signed him to be Marc-Andre Fleury’s backup next season. That means Brent Johnson, a UFA on July 1, will be moving on.
It’s the kind of move many believe the Leafs will be making to add some veteran goaltending insurance to their roster. Vokoun, at 35, is not the perfect guy — he was injured, then lost his job in Washington to Braden Holtby — but he was one possibility. The Leafs, in fact, looked at him last summer but were disinclined to offer a two-year contract.
There are quite a few other UFA goalies coming on the market. The best for the Leafs might be Scott Clemmensen, who they’ve had before and played very well for Florida both this year and in the playoffs. Clemmensen is a solid citizen who might be the perfect and very affordable stabilizing element while the Leafs continue to evaluate the progress of Scrivens and James Reimer. A similar choice might be Johan Hedberg of the Devils, although he’s 39 while Clemmensen is 34.
That, of course, is one of the issues at hand if the Leafs were to try and swing a deal for Roberto Luongo. They’d essentially be writing off the futures of Reimer and Scrivens as possible starting goalies because Luongo would take the position for at least the next five years.
It took until last week, four-plus months into the season, but the Maple Leafs finally had their projected A-list roster on the ice last week when Colby Armstrong and John-Michael Liles made it into the lineup. Now we’ll see what GM Brian Burke can pick off prior to the deadline to avoid the franchise’s seventh straight DNQ. Keep in mind, he has added skilled forwards (Phil Kessel, Joffrey Lupul) and a Robocop defenseman (Dion Phaneuf). The missing piece is the power forward. Which probably makes Anaheim’s Bobby Ryan No. 1 on Burke’s checklist. And maybe Corey Perry No. 1A.
Rumors are swirling once again about the Toronto Maple Leafs, and their struggles as of late: the penalty kill is where it’s been for a good part of the season, in last, and the goaltending has been troublesome. Let’s think about Jonas Gustavsson for a second: he’s signed until the end of this season, and one would think he has no intention of resigning with his current team for many reasons: primarily the fans have not been kind to him, and perhaps he believs he has what it takes to be a starting goaltender. So, who’s in the market for a backup-with-potential? The Devils, Lightening, Blue Jackets, and of course the Islanders (lol) are all possible contenders. Let’s jump in and look:
If the Carolina Hurricanes are “sellers” at this month’s NHL trade deadline (Feb. 28), chances are, as Johnny Mathis would sing, the Flyers would make a serious run at Erik Cole.
Canes’ general manager Jim Rutherford told us he firmly believes his club will snatch the eighth and final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference. As such, that makes Carolina a “buyer” this month — not a seller.
For certain reasons the word around Toronto media is that Ron Wilson’s job is secured for the near future. Why? Well a few common reasons are cited:
1: This is a team in rebuild mode. You don’t want to fire your coach for doing poorly when he has nothing to work with.
2: Toronto has had a very poor core of players to work with. You can’t blame the coach if no one is producing.
3: Wilson’s system works. The quick, offensive minded attack and point-shot-screen powerplay gets the job done, it just needs to be executed properly.
4: And finally, Wilson is a close friend of Brian Burke. If anyone knows the team and the coach, it’s the GM; he makes the calls and should know when Wilson’s time is up.
its become apparent that the toronto maple leafs have went off course which some expected to take place threw the first quarter of the season, and given many online publications already posted the blame game comes out .
If the Toronto Maple Leafs organization was smart than they would trade all of the players for which they can obtain draft picks in the first round, and trade them now. In doing this Brian Burke should be hoping to hell that he can fix his mistake of trading away his 1st round draft pick for 2011.
– An ego like Brian Burke couldn’t possibly bare giving up two top lotto picks in consecutive season…… there is still time to salvage the season
Look, Brian Burke insists he is not looking at bringing Marc Savard to Toronto.
“The rumor – what I read anyway – is that Boston is looking to move this player,” he said. “We have some options presented to us over the weekend, trade wise, that do not involve this player (Savard) that we are looking at.”
Fair enough. If Burke says it, I believe it. The guy is a legendary straight shooter.
Billy Sweatt, a 21-year-old prospect from Colorado College, officially became an unrestricted free agent when he failed to reach a contract agreement with GM Brian Burke and the Maple Leafs.
Toronto acquired Sweatt’s rights from Chicago in the offseason trade that sent Kris Versteeg to the Leafs
When you have missed the playoffs for a fifth consecutive season and are void of high draft picks, there’s not much hope to sell in an NHL off season.
So many Maple Leafs fans will buy into the notion that Canada Day truly could be free-agent frenzy for the team and that their wheeling-dealing general manager will somehow do something to spin this thing around.
Reality, on the other hand, is considerably more sobering.
So last season wasn’t a great thing to watch for leaf fans (actually it was quite abismal) but things should be looking up with a future with players like these:
Dion Phaneuf:Still only 25 and one of the youngest leafs to be named captain
believe me this guy IS NOT a one and done.
Luke Schenn: 21 and will feed off of the captains lead