Archive for the ‘Toronto Maple Leafs’ Category

Toronto Maple Leafs Power Play Key To Success In 2011-12?

June 23rd, 2011 No Comments

For most NHL teams the power play can make or break your season. In the case of the Toronto Maple Leafs the power play may, in fact, be the key to their success in 2011-12. Known for shoddy special teams all the way around, the Maple Leafs emerged from the 2010-11 season with the 22nd ranked power play in the league. It was an improvement on their 30thoverall ranking in 2009-10, but with a 15.95% success rate the Leafs power play wasn’t scaring off too many teams from taking a penalty. Case and point, the Leafs had a total of 326 power play opportunities last season, which ranked them 3rd overall. The Maple Leafs managed a total of 52 power play goals, which ranked them 15th overall. Anybody see the disconnect? When you consider the Leafs power play units one

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Toronto Maple Leafs Free Agency and Draft Strategy

June 20th, 2011 No Comments

With the 2010-11 NHL season officially in the books Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke is set to hit this summer’s free agent frenzy with the tenacity, vigor and testosterone that he expects from his players. Though his ability to land a top-flight centre may be limited, signing the likes of Brad Richards still appears to be at the top of Burke’s list. According to recent reports, the NHL will set the cap limit at $64 million with the bottom end set at $48 million. That’s a $25 million raise from when the NHL first instituted the salary cap in 2005-06 and a $4.6 million raise over last seasons salary cap, which should give Burke plenty of room with which to bring in some of the missing pieces. The Maple Leafs currently employ a total of 16 players for

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Should The Toronto Maple Leafs Buyout Mike Komisarek?

June 12th, 2011 No Comments

With free agency just around the corner there has been a lot of chatter about the pro’s and cons of buying out a number of players. Names like Chris Drury, Dany Heatley, Scott Gomez and Sheldon Souray continue to show up in reports, while, on the Toronto Maple Leafs front, the name of defenseman Mike Komisarek has found its way into a few buyout rumors. Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke brought Komisarek to the Blue and White via free agency in the summer of 2009. At the time of the signing Komisarek had just come off an impressive season with the Montreal Canadiens which saw him lead the Habs in blocked shots (207) and hits with 191. The Hockey News ranked Komisarek as the ninth most desirable free agent that summer, but also warned that “whichever team signs

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Toronto Maple Leafs: Ten Prospects That Could Pull a “James Reimer” in 2011

April 7th, 2011 3 Comments

Its official. With the Toronto Maple leafs 4-3 shootout loss to the Washington Capitals on Tuesday night our beloved Maple Leafs have now gone without a Stanley Cup victory for 44 years. While the Toronto Maple Leafs organization has had a number of bright spots along the way, the fact remains that, for the most part, the Maple Leafs have been an organization marred in mediocrity for over four decades. For many years the Blue and White ignored the NHL Entry Draft in favor of trading for grizzled veterans. Needless to say, given the lack of Stanley Cups, that philosophy never really worked, often leaving the team void of any homegrown star talent, which, in turn, was a major reason the organization has suffered for so long. Since his arrival Toronto Maple Leafs general manager Brian Burke has endured an

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Toronto Maple Leafs: The Phil Kessel Deal Was Worth It…Really!

April 4th, 2011 4 Comments

There have been a number of controversial NHL trades over the years. The deal that sent Wayne Gretzky from the Edmonton Oilers to the Los Angeles Kings immediately comes to everyone’s mind, while others remember the Joe Thornton trade that saw Jumbo Joe traded from the Boston Bruins to the San Jose Sharks. In their own way, each trade changed hockey. In Los Angeles, Gretzky put the Kings on the hockey map, while in San Jose, Thornton lifted the franchise from also-ran into perpetual Stanley Cup contender. While not on the same level, the deal that saw Phil Kessel traded from the Boston Bruins to the Toronto Maple Leafs has also been deemed highly controversial—especially here in Toronto where, prior to this season, many Maple Leaf fans deemed the trade to be a disaster. On September 9th, 2009, Toronto Maple

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Toronto Maple Leafs: Which Player Will Emerge As The Teams’ Best Player?

April 1st, 2011 No Comments

The Toronto Maple Leafs continued their charge towards a playoff birth, defeating the always tough Boston Bruins in their own barn by a score of 4-3 in a shootout. The game was a chippy affair, complete with some pretty offensive plays, a nice tilt between Milan Lucic and Jay Rosehill and a tremendous shootout winner from Leafs rookie Nazem Kadri. To be fair, there were several hero’s last night for the Maple Leafs, including the likes of Joffrey Lupul who scored two goals (one of which was on the power play) and registered an assist on the opening goal of the night. Luke Schenn, James Reimer and Phil Kessel (two assists on the night) also had good games in their own way, helping to lift the Maple Leafs within five points of the eighth place Buffalos Sabres who occupy the

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