Archive for the ‘Teams’ Category

Matthew Lombardi and Cody Franson Join Toronto Maple Leafs Via Trade

July 3rd, 2011 1 Comment

All the hoopla over Brian Burke visiting troops in Afghanistan doesn’t seem to be hurting the Toronto Maple Leafs’ chances of landing a couple of pieces to their 2011-12 roster. Saturday, Brian Burke and the Maple Leafs signed free agent centre Tim Connolly to a two-year, $9.5 million deal, Today, Burke and Company acquired centre Matthew Lombardi and defenseman Cody Franson from the Nashville Predators in return for defenseman Brett Lebda and forward/prospect Robert Slaney. The deal also calls for the Maple Leafs to give up a fourth round draft choice contingent upon Lombardi playing 60 or more games over the next two seasons. The Predators will give the Maple Leafs a fourth rounder should Lombardi fail to play 60 or more games. Signed as a free agent by the Nashville Predators last summer, Lombardi suffered an early season concussion,


Tim Connolly Signs With Toronto Maple Leafs

July 2nd, 2011 2 Comments

Having lost out to the New York Rangers in the Brad Richards sweepstakes the Toronto Maple Leafs signed free agent centre Tim Connolly to a two-year, $9.5 million contract. While Maple Leaf prospects Nazem Kadri and Joe Colborne appear to represent the Maple Leafs future down the middle, Brian Burke and Company are hoping Connolly can fill the gap until the two youngsters are ready to assume the first line centre duties—that is if Burke fails to land another centre via the trade route. Connolly, who is known as a set-up man, notched 13 goals and 42 points through 68 games with the rival Buffalo Sabres. Injuries, including back, hip, groin and nasal issues, have taken their toll on Connolly, limiting his games played and overall numbers. In ten NHL seasons Connolly has had few seasons in which he played


2011 NHL Free Agency: Where Will Brad Richards Land?

June 29th, 2011 No Comments

With Chris Drury expected to accept a buyout from the New York Rangers on Friday, New York looks to be positioning themselves to take a good run at the NHL’s premier free agent, Brad Richards. Richards is expected to have as many as 20 different NHL teams interested in him, but in the end there are only a few teams that have the cap room and competitive roster in place to attract the likes of Richards. At 31-years old Richards is no spring chicken. That said, there is no other free agent player in the class that Richards is. That is why Richards is expected to garner a contract in the $6.5-$8.0 million range with a term as high as nine years. Richards looks to be set on playing for a Stanley Cup contender, regardless of the money thrown at


Toronto Maple Leafs select Josh Leivo In The Third Round

June 25th, 2011 No Comments

Void of a second round draft choice, Brian Burke had to settle for making his third selection of the 2011 NHL Entry at the 86th slot selecting left winger Josh Leivo. With undersized forwards Rocco Grimaldi (33rd overall) and Daniel Catanacchi (77th overall) and  American born Brandon Saad (43rd overall) already gone (three players many fans expected Burke to take a run at) Burke turned his attention back to Canada. In Leivo the Maple Leafs get a 6’1”, 180 pound forward who is known as a good skater. Through 64 games Leivo scored 13 goals and added 17 assists as a member of the Sudbury Wolves. Leivo followed his underwhelming regular season up with a monster effort in the playoffs, netting six goals and seven assists (13 points) through eight games. Clearly, the Innisfil native has his work cut out for


Stuart Percy ,Tyler Biggs Drafted By Toronto Maple Leafs

June 24th, 2011 1 Comment

After making a move on the draft floor (trading his 30th and 39th pick to the Anaheim Ducks for the 22nd pick overall) Burke used that pick to select U.S born 6’2” 205 pound Tyler Biggs. When you consider the Maple Leafs organizational needs its no surprise that Burke made the move to bring Biggs into the fold. Burke has always liked Truculence, pugnacity and testosterone—three attributes Biggs will bring to the Maple Leafs someday. Burke followed the “Bigg move” up by selecting defenseman Stuart Percy with the 25th pick overall. Percy, who stands 6’1” and weighs in at 185 pounds, is a great passer, who is know for his high hockey IQ. A solid all around game should see Percy project into a solid top-four defenseman in the coming years. With so many forward talent still on the board


Tyler Biggs Drafted By Toronto Maple Leafs

June 24th, 2011 No Comments

It’s been a busy week for Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke. Earlier in the day Burke pulled off a deal with the Colorado Avalanche which saw the Leafs ship a 2010 second round draft choice (acquired in the Tomas Kaberle trade) in return for veteran defenseman John-Michael Liles. On Thursday the Maple Leafs were involved in several other trade rumors, including the Mike Richards and Jeff Carter deals which took place on Thursday. Burke failed to bring either Richards or Carter to Toronto, electing to hang on to his picks and, if the rumors are true, prospect Nazem Kadri. When you look at the Maple Leafs organization two soft spots stick out—a lack of legitimate number one centres and a real need for skilled wingers. Burke made a move on the draft floor, trading his 30th and 39th