Wilson issues new threats

By LANCE HORNBY

Looking for an early Christmas present for your favourite Maple Leaf?

How about a game night alarm clock with the snooze button ripped out.Coach Ron Wilson is getting so peeved with his club’s stumbling starts, surrendering the first goal in 16 of 18 games and falling behind by two in nine of them, that he’s threatening sanctions for stage fright.

“I have to be a lot more adamant and take ice time away from guys who don’t do the right things in the first shift or two,” Wilson said yesterday at the MasterCard Centre, before the flight to Ottawa for tonight’s game.

It wasn’t that long ago that Wilson wanted to ease all that outside pressure on the team, letting them frolic with tennis balls in practice or play on a three-quarter ice surface. At least the Leafs were getting points for a bit, but now the early deficits, coupled with 25 even-strength goals out of 45, has snapped the coaching staff’s patience.

PICK UP THE PACE

At one stage during offensive drills yesterday, assistant coach Tim Hunter shouted: ‘Wakey, wakey’ at the line of Mikhail Grabovski, Jason Blake and Niklas Hagman, a trio with 11 combined goals.

“Our power play is doing great, our penalty killing is starting to do better, but even-strength, we have to find a way,” Blake said. “You don’t have to be great in every area, but you have to be pretty good.”

http://www.torontosun.com/sports/hockey/2009/11/17/11771506-sun.html


162 Responses to Wilson issues new threats

  1. bbruins37 says:

    no im saying the way it looked when it happened would lead me to believe that it wasnt in. upon closer review, it did look in. but when everything is so fast paced and you see huet stretching out with his whole arm on the line, it looks like a save.

    i cant comment on hte dallas one because i didnt see it.

    basically the reffing has been going downhill every year since the 2005/06 season. during that season, the reffing wasnt great, but you did see alot more consistency with the calls. the refs were told to make calls everytime a player put his stick on another player, and they did an ok job of it, which made the offensive numbers alot more gaudy as there were so many PP.

    now theres no consistency in the calls. you'll see players hacking at other players and not getting called, then you'll see alot of phantom calls too. i know that it might get really annoying to see a powerplay for everything, but i think its kind of got to be an "all or nothing" situation for making calls. otherwise, theres just way too many backbreaking non-calls (or calls) that can change the outcome of games.

  2. leafshockey says:

    Say what you will, but there are bounces in a hockey game, and each one goes one of two ways. And this whole season, the Leafs CANNOT get a *****ing bounce. The refs, while i won't say they'repart of some conspiracy against the Leafs, are not making calls that they should. Missed calls against the opposition or complete crap calls agaisnt us are pretty much the norm.

  3. cam7777 says:

    well, this is exactly it.  it seems to me there are different rules for different refs, different rivalries, different teams.  as a player, or a coach, how do you prepare yourself when you don't know what the refs are going to be like?  can ron wilson, for instance, in good conscience say "go out there and hit everything in sight boys!" if he thinks the referees might decide that boarding is the flavor of the hour?

    it's not just the leafs clearly, because it's all over the league.  i'm watching the sharks/flyers game right now, and even the american broadcasters did a piece about the bullshit the referees have been spewing.  they showed the clip of the NHL saying that the intention of the referee is what stops the play.  they then showed a goal against emery where emery appeared to have the puck in his pads, and the far angle camera catches the referee move his whistle to his mouth, and nearly blow the whistle when Emery is run over and puck flies into the net – he moves he changes the motion of his hand mid-motion and calls it a goal.  It's absurd.

    They obviously need to take it out of the referees hands right now.  It's got to be a challenge flag system on certain calls, and goals should be goals regardless of what the referee thinks. 

    Things that need to change:

    1.) the High-sticking rule
    2.) Referee discretion on controversial rulings
    3.) Intention play stoppages
    4.) Lack of ability to challenge the call.

  4. bbruins37 says:

    oh right, i forgot you could see into the future

  5. HABSSTAR says:

    "At the Bell Centre, the crowd is amazing and drunk.  I loved it."  Priceless!  

    I get what you mean, especially about the two teams.  In an ideal world I want both to be at their best, I just want the Habs' best  to be better than the Leafs' best. 

    We get that to a degree already, it never seems to matter where the teams are in the standings Leafs/Habs games always seem to be a good games.  As both teams are usually able to put aside any problems they may have to face their rival. 

    Here's to some day seeing a Leafs/Habs Eastern Confrence Championship… and then a Habs Stanley Cup that same year! lol

  6. cam7777 says:

    Yea, we do get that, it would just be amazing if the game actually meant something.  The closest thing we've seen in recent memory is that shootout of a final game of the season where the playoffs were essentially on the line.  Of course, the Islanders had to ruin the hysteria of the moment.

    And likewise, except obviously, with the Leafs prevailing and advancing to the Stanley Cup final.

  7. mon167 says:

    Sorry but I have to say a lot of your trades and other people's waiver suggestions just won't happen. I mean not only does Toronto have bad players they have big salaries. It is going to be tough to probably even impossible to get rid of some of these players like Blake and Finger.

    Having said that I think the leafs will just have to accept that they might have to keep some of these losers.
    I think you can forget about trading any players this season cuz no one would want them. However, if you wait until the summer and let all of these contracts expire, with the money you free up you may be able to put a pretty decent team together. Gustavsson in nets, like you said:biron added to that.
    then there are some pretty good names that could probably hit the free agents market like Marleau and Frolov. If your lucky Niedermeyer and Kovalchuk too. I think its a better bet for Toronto to go about things that way than thinking they are going to trade away some of these bad contracts. And as much as getting players like Versteeg and company would help, i dont think it is worth it for you or anyone to do so by taking on contracts such as Huet's. I mean that is a worse contract than Toskala for a goalie who is probably just as bad.
  8. cam7777 says:

    Ha, no one would want them.  You're such a tool.  I bet they're dieing to get their hands on the Kostitsyn's though, right?

    No one would could use a 2nd/3rd line center on pace for 56 points? (Stajan)
    No one would want a 2nd/3rd line left wing on pace for 32 goals?
    No one would want a solid all-around depth player at the deadline, who is two seasons removed from 27 goals, and is on pace for a 40 point outting? (Stempniak)
    No one is going to want to add veteran grit to their lineup at the deadline? (Primeau, Mayers)
    No one wants a depth defensemen who can deliver punishing, sometimes game-changing hits? (Exelby)

    You're a joke if you think that just because these players can't combine to make a go of it in Toronto means that no one would want them.  It is hardly any of their faults that the team lacks a true 1st line.  When you lack that crucial element of a team, the effect trickles down through the roster. 

    But as I suggested in the trades, Stajan would instantly become a far more effecitve player concealed behind Toews, Kane, Hossa, Sharp, Byfuglien, Versteeg, and others.  Likewise, Stempniak is far more useful playing alongside quality veterans, as he has proven before (when he played with Kariya and Boyes).    The Leafs don't have any of those, but lots of teams do.  He is a complimentary player, and teams need those quite often.  Even Blake – do you really think a guy who has scored 20 goals every year since 2001 (save the year he had cancer) can't find a job anywhere in the NHL?  Imagine Blake on the New Jersey roster, playing 3rd line behind Elias, Zajac, Parise, Rolston, Langenbrunner, Clarkson, etc…  Suddenly, he becomes a dynamic scoring threat, because other teams won't have time to focus in on him – much like Gionta.

    You Montreal fans are hilarious.  Stajan is performing better than Gomez, but Stajan is the one with no value, despite the fact Gomez makes 4.2 times as much money.  lol.

  9. mon167 says:

    Buddy no one was talking about the habs players so i don't know why your talking as if that was even part of this. second of all Darren Dreger says the same thing and i'd be hard pressed to say he's not more of a leafs fan than a habs fan.

    And you can think what you want but 4 M for blake and 3.5 M for Finger, get out of here! Do you read? Cuz its not my opinion but the opinion of most that Toronto is totally getting screwed on those contracts! And Unlike you, other teams aren't dumb and they can see that Andre Kostitsyn (while not yet) will be better than any of your joke players, the skill and size are there. Its simple. You have to look into the future and not just the present for players like Kostitsyn. And yes, some of the leaf's players may have some potential that they aren't showing with the leafs or aren't showing yet in their careers. But as i wrote..i was talking especially about your ridiculous Finger and Blake ideas.

  10. mon167 says:

    Just cuz two GMs are friends doesn't mean one is gonna just help the other one out and screw himself. Out of pure benevolence! lol

  11. the_word says:

    Big salaries? We have one contract that is over 5 million dollars and then Mike Komisarek is our highest paid player at 4.5.

  12. cam7777 says:

    Gomez – 22GP, 2G, 9A – 7.357 million dollars 
    J.Blake – 20GP, 2G, 11A – 4.0 million dollars (but 3 in actual salary)

    With lesser minutes and linemates, and at half the price, Blake provides better offense than Scott Gomez, who was also thought to be untradeable.  You're one to talk about unmoveable contracts.  You have absolutely the worst contract in the league in Montreal.   

    Dreger actually didnt say anything like that.  He said that he expects Stajan, and the rest to be traded.  He said that Ponikarovsky and Stempniak may be resigned, but expects the rest to be traded.  He said nothing of Blake or Finger, but if you can move Gomez, you can move Blake. 

    Other teams have literally laughed out loud at Gainey at the notion of taking on the Kostitsyn's.  They are totally, and utterly worthless right now.  Unlike Blake, they do not have 10 years w/ 20 goals or more on their resume either.

    How are those Finger/Blake ideas ridiculous?  You do realize that Pandolfo and Preissing are almost worthless to their current clubs, right?  The Leafs are taking on bench fodder so they can buy it out a year sooner than they would be able to Blake and Finger (or bury it in the minors).  Blake and Finger make slightly more (500K and 750K), but actually play and contribute.   

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