Archive for September, 2010

Does Francois Beauchemin Still Fit Into The Maple Leafs’ Plans?

September 7th, 2010 No Comments

When Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke brought defenseman Francois Beauchemin into the fold via free agency almost every Maple Leaf fan applauded Burke for signing the veteran defenseman, regardless of the high price (three year deal worth an average of $3.8 million). At the time of the signing, Burke described Beauchemin as a “rock solid, steady defender that will add character to our team.” With a full season in the Blue and White behind him it’s safe to say that, while decent, Beauchemin was hardly the rock solid, steady defender the Maple Leafs thought they were getting. Truth be told, Beauchemin struggled with the Leafs last season, posting just five goals and 26 points. While his point totals were not terrible, his career-worst plus minus rating of minus-13 jumps off the stats sheets at you. At minus-13, Beauchemin

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Columbus Blue Jackets-Nikita Filatov-Where is he?

September 6th, 2010 2 Comments

By Louis Pisano Nikita Filatov was the highest ranked European player in 2008 and was drafted 6th overall by the Columbus Blue Jackets, since then has only played in 21 NHL games. In two U18 World Championships he has a gold and silver medal and in three World Junior Championships he has two bronze medals along with being named to two tournament all-star teams. He was the captain of the 2009 WJC Russian team. Last season he and then head coach of the Columbus Blue Jackets Ken Hitchcock didn’t see eye to eye to say the least and Columbus allowed him to go back to Russia and finish off the season with CSKA Moscow of the KHL. He recieved KHL best player of the week award week of Nov 22nd and KHL best newcomer of the month award for Nov.

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Toronto Maple Leafs:Luca Caputi:Home Town Kid Ready for a Break Out Season?

September 5th, 2010 No Comments

By Louis “KingofRoncesvalles” Pisano Last year Luca Caputi came home to Toronto Ontario and the team he watched growing up after playing in Pittsburgh’s organization since being drafted in the fourth round in 2007 111th overall. Caputi spent time with Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins in the AHL and the Wheeling Nailers of the ECHL. In his 28 NHL games with Toronto and Pittsburgh combined Kaputi has registered three goals six assists for a total of nine points along with 16 penalty minutes. No numbers that really wow by any means. Looking back to his last year of junior with Niagara Ice-Dogs of the OHL the numbers certainly have a wow factor, 66 games 51 goals 60 assists for 111 points and 107 penalty minutes. Sometimes when players end up out of their elements and away from home it can be overwhelming,

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Mikhail Grabovski: Second Line Centre For The Toronto Maple Leafs?

September 4th, 2010 No Comments

They say in order to determine a person’s future the best indicator is their past. For Mikhail Grabovski, his past is spotty at best, which begs the question, does he deserve a shot at the Toronto Maple Leafs second line centre job? Through 137 career games as a Maple Leaf, “Grabo” has accumulated a total of 30 goals and 83 points. Along the way Grabo has demonstrated an ability to create offense and a nose for the net. Unfortunately, Grabo has also demonstrated a number of bad characteristics, including mediocre play in the defensive zone, a penchant for holding onto the puck (or being a puck hog—remember Sergei Berezin???) and a compete level that often comes in spurts. With youngsters such as Nazem Kadri nipping at Grabovski’s heals for the number two centre job, it is tough to say whether

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Toronto Maple Leafs Depth Chart, 2010-11. Got Questions? We Got Answers?

September 4th, 2010 1 Comment

Last week we offered to answer your questions concerning NHL hockey, and the response was excellent with over 50 questions forwarded. This week, “bevanthony” asks, “Hey I was wondering. If u could show me what the leafs depth chart would look like top 9 forwards, Thanks!” The depth chart will likely depend a lot on on-ice chemistry between the players that is developed at training camp and within the first 20-25 games of the regular season. There really isn’t a lot to choose from guys like Nikolai Kulemin, Colby Armstrong, Mikhail Grabovski, etc, any of these guys could be second or third liner. That said, here is how I see things projecting: Forwards: Versteeg     Bozak     Kessel Kulemin      Kadri       Armstrong Caputi    Grabovski    Sjostrom (injured right now) Brown      Hanson      Orr  Defense: Kaberle    Komisarek Phaneuf    Schenn Beauchemin    Gunnarsson Lebda    Lashoff Finger  Thanks for

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Ilya Kovalchuk Deal Accepted By The NHL

September 4th, 2010 No Comments

In what was becoming a never ending story, it appears as if the NHL and NHLPA have finally come to an agreement on Ilya Kovalchuk’s contract. Rumors were swirling this morning that the NHL and NHLPA were working on an amendment to the rules within the Collective Bargaining Agreement that would allow for the Kovalchuk deal to be accepted, which is exactly what has transpired. In a move that is unprecedented, it appears as if the NHL and NHLPA worked together to make the amendment to the rules that govern long term contracts. Under the new rules, it is believed that several loopholes of the prior agreement have been closed, allowing Kovalchuk’s 15-year, $100 million deal to be accepted by league standards. While this newest deal is for slightly less money than the 17-year, $102 million deal, there is no

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