Archive for October, 2011

Ugly Stats Still Haunt Toronto Maple Leafs

October 31st, 2011 2 Comments

On the surface, when you consider the Maple Leafs are 7-3-1 on the season there is little to complain about. Sniper Phil Kessel is off to a hot start, Dion Phaneuf looks to be back as a dominating force on the blueline and Joffrey Lupul looks to be a nice surprise early on. As good as the Maple Leafs have been through 11 games, there are a few statistics that continue to haunt the Blue and White. In 2010-11 the Maple Leafs owned the 27th ranked penalty kill with a success rate of 77.4 percent. As bad as their PK was last season, things are actually worse this season as the Blue and White are currently sporting a 72.3 percent success rate on the PK, five points worse than 2010-11’s success rate. While Toronto has employed an aggressive forecheck on

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Brian Burke’s Moves Paying Dividends

October 30th, 2011 1 Comment

The Toronto Maple Leafs beat the Pittsburgh Penguins by a final score of 4-3 Saturday night, solidifying their place atop the Northeast Division. The Maple Leafs 7-2-1 record through ten games gives them 15 points, good enough for third overall in the standings. While it is only ten games into the 2011-12 season, Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke has a lot to brag about, much of which can be attributed to the many moves he has made over his tenure with the Blue and White. Burke’s rebuild started with the much maligned acquisition of Phil Kessel from the Boston Bruins which saw two first round draft choices (2010, 2011) and a second rounder (2011) exchanged for the sniper. While it is still early to award either franchise a winner in the trade it appears as if both clubs are

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Cody Franson: Is He A Good Fit With Edmonton Oilers?

October 28th, 2011 No Comments

The Edmonton Oilers have announced that defenseman Ryan Whitney will be out of the lineup with a sprained knee. The injury is expected to keep Whitney out for three weeks. Whitney had already been out of the Edmonton lineup for four games this season with a ankle injury. A pillar on the Edmonton power play and their best puck-moving defenseman, the loss of Whitney will hit the Oilers hard, which may all but erase their impressive 5-2-2 start to the season. With the Oilers off to a great start there is every reason to believe that Edmonton may look to acquire a defenseman to fill the void of losing Whitney. According to capgeek.com, the Oilers currently have a payroll of $60,442,838, which leaves them with $3,857,162 in cap room. While Edmonton is not known for spending right up to the

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James Reimer To Sit Against New York Rangers

October 27th, 2011 No Comments

In what is quickly becoming an issue of concern for the Toronto Maple Leafs, starting goaltender James Reimer will be out of the lineup Thursday night against the New York Rangers and possibly longer as he was placed on the Injured Reserved list today. Reimer suffered an apparent whiplash-like injury earlier in the week when one of the Montreal Canadiens forwards collided with Reimer’s head. Always looking to be quiet on these subjects, the Maple Leafs have not called Reimer’s symptoms a concussion, but there is the suspicion that Reimer may very well be suffering from just that—a concussion. Reimer practiced Wednesday and by all accounts looked ready to go for Thursday nights action, but is said to have felt poorly after practice, which caused Maple Leafs head coach Ron Wilson to err on the side of caution, keeping Reimer

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All Hands On Deck: James Reimer, Tim Connolly, Tyler Bozak Expected In Lineup Against New York Rangers

October 26th, 2011 1 Comment

The Toronto Maple Leafs are expected to get a trio of injured players back into the lineup Thursday night when they prepare to do battle against the New York Rangers in New York. Goaltender James Reimer is expected to be back in the lineup after recovering from whip-lash like symptoms, Tyler Bozak is ready to go after injuring his foot while Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke’s prized off-season signing Tim Connolly looks to be ready for game action, recovering from an upper body injury he sustained falling into the boards during training camp. For Connolly, it will be his first regular season action with the Maple Leafs. His arrival has been a long time coming and with his arrival comes great expectations that he will give Toronto what it has been missing since Mats Sundin left—a true number one

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Toronto Maple Leafs Looking For Change?

October 26th, 2011 No Comments

A few weeks ago we speculated that Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke was seeking a trading partner. At the time, the Leafs were undefeated, but the feeling was that with so much depth at the centre and defense positions that Burke would attempt to address his need for a shutdown forward and/or another top-six forward. Mike Komisarek, Nazem Kadri, Tyler Bozak, Cody Franson and even Carl Gunnarsson have all been the subject of a number of early season trade rumors, but up to now nothing has emerged as more than fodder. While there is no more concrete evidence that Burke is seeking a trading partner today than there was ten days ago, the recent play of the Maple Leafs (two bad loses in their past three games) and the news that off-season signing Tim Connolly is close to

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