Archive for October, 2010

Tyler Bozak: Should The Maple Leafs Re-sign him?

October 31st, 2010 No Comments

Given the lack of depth at the centre position within the Toronto Maple Leafs organization it would seem to be a no-brainer to re-sign pending restricted free agent Tyler Bozak to a new long-term contract. Originally signed as a free agent by the Maple Leafs in 2009, Bozak made a quick ascent to the NHL, spending all of 32 games with the Maple Leafs AHL affiliate Toronto Marlies before joining the big club where Bozak put up 27 points in his first 37 NHL games (eight goals, 19 assists). Blessed with playing alongside Maple Leafs sniper Phil Kessel, Bozak’s rookie season was deemed a success, all but earning him the first line centre position in 2010-11. At a “cap hit” of $3,725,000 (his actual “salary” is only $875,000) Bozak is the Maple Leafs second highest paid forward (again, cap-wise). (all

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Will The Toronto Maple Leafs End Offensive Slump Vs. The New York Rangers?

October 30th, 2010 No Comments

Having lost four out of their past five games the Toronto Maple Leafs will look to get back on track when they host the New York Rangers at the Air Canada Centre this evening. Tonight’s tilt will mark the third time that these two teams have met this season, with both teams taking a game thus far. While the Maple Leafs continue to get strong efforts from their goaltenders the forward group is quite another story. Phil Kessel and Clarke MacArthur currently lead the team in goals scored with seven and six goals on the season respectively, but outside of those two, the entire team seems to be struggling to light the lamp. Outside of MacArthur and Kessel, only two Maple Leafs have scored more than one goal on the season—Tim Brent (2) and Colton Orr (2). As great as

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Tyler Seguin Shines In Bruins Victory Over Maple Leafs

October 28th, 2010 2 Comments

Heading into Thursday night game against the Boston Bruins many Toronto Maple Leafs fans were anxious to see Phil Kessel play his first game against Tyler Seguin—the player the Maple Leafs could have drafted had Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke not made the deal to acquire Kessel. While nobody expected to be able to end the debate of which team won the trade (which saw Burke give up two first rounders and a second round pick in return for Kessel) we all felt it sure would be fun to watch the two players collide. Handicapped by a roster that did not include Colby Armstrong (hand injury) and Kris Versteeg (back issues) the Maple Leafs were already heading into Boston at a disadvantage, add the fact that Boston dominated the Maple Leafs last season and you had yourself a recipe

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The NHL’s Best Duo Over the last Five Seasons

October 26th, 2010 No Comments

Is there a better twosome that plays on the same line in the NHL these days, than Henrik and Daniel Sedin? I mean who knew that the Twins would evolve into such consistent scoring machines. Being picked in the 1999 NHL Entry draft as the number two and three in the first round, was in itself a great accomplishment. That will go down as Brian Burke’s best drafting move he’s pulled off to date. Not that the Vancouver fans took to them in their early years, as they were unceremoniously dubbed with some unflattering titles, such as the “Sisters”.

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Who’s winning The Carey Price/Jaroslav Halak “Situation”

October 25th, 2010 1 Comment

During the 2009-10 NHL playoffs Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jaroslav Halak led the Habs to two impressive upset series wins over the Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins. With Halak demonstrating the ability to win the big games it was thought that the debate over whether the Canadiens should keep Halak or Carey Price was over with the verdict being that Halak was in and Price would be shipped out. In a move that shocked many Canadiens fans and hockey experts en mass, the Canadiens chose to move their playoff hero to the St. Louis Blues in favor of keeping the inconsistent, oft-distracted, hard-luck Price in the organization. Given Price’s struggles, inability to make the big saves in the big games, troubles with the media and concerns over his off-ice activities it seemed as if keeping Halak over Price was a no-brainer.

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Nikolai Kulemin Replaces Kris Versteeg On Maple Leafs’ Top Line

October 25th, 2010 No Comments

With his team losing three games in a row, Toronto Maple Leafs head coach Ron Wilson has opted to start struggling winger Kris Versteeg on the second line in Tuesday nights game against the Florida Panthers. Earlier in the week I had speculated that a move to the second line might be just what the doctor ordered for the snake bitten Versteeg, who, through seven games, has netted just one goal, missing numerous opportunities from in close along the way. The ever-improving Nikolai Kulemin (who has one goal and four assists through seven games) is expected to take Versteeg’s place on the first unit alongside Tyler Bozak and Phil Kessel. Kulemin, who brings a little more size to the table than Versteeg, plays a similar style of game that Versteeg, battling in the corners, getting to lose pucks and creating

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