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Dion Phaneuf

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More than ever before, NHL management involves getting out of bad contracts. Always better to move a contract a year early, than a year late. When the full season lockout lifted, free agency was an event with the capacity to shift team’s trajectories and quickly push them up or down the ranks. For example, the Anaheim Ducks signed Scott Niedermayer, their Captain, when they won the Cup. The Blackhawks—and Red Wings—signed Marian Hossa, who was a key piece in their Cup quests. Other teams did not win the Cup, but the Philadelphia Flyers signing Peter Forsberg; the New York Rangers signing...
Dave Nonis Leafs

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The evaluation period might not be over, but the reality has hit Leafs Nation. This team is not very good, and it needs a face lift. Not a face lift to the bottom six this time, but to the top players on the team. The real question, though, is who is going to do it? The Leafs have nine players making at least $3M as a capped-out, lottery team, and current-GM Dave Nonis signed every one of those deals save for the JVR contract, which is easily the best bang-for-the-buck deal the team has locked in. Talk around town...

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The other day, over at my hockey analytics blog, I wrote an article on the relationship between Possession/Corsi (CF%) and Shooting Percentage (Sh%) in 5v5 close situations. I figured I'd piggy back on that analysis a little and take a look at the Leafs over the past three and a half seasons spanning the Randy Carlyle era. In my HockeyAnalysis.com article, I showed that, while some elite level teams or truly bad teams can break the trend, there is generally a strong negative correlation between a teams CF% and shooting percentage. Recall that CF% stands for Corsi For Percentage, which is the percentage...

Toronto Maple Leafs - Recent Posts

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The reality for both these teams is that the trade deadline and draft positioning have become the only real talking points of relevance down the stretch. The Devils are trotting out a roster that was best suited to contend just after the 04-05 lockout. The Leafs have one win in the year 2015 and are now without a top pairing defenceman; the current solution with Phaneuf out is moving Korbinian Holzer over to his weak side and playing him on the top pairing with Cody Franson. The Leafs do have Leo Komarov, expected to start with Kadri and Kessel, and Peter Holland, expected to play with Winnik...

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Tuesday Practice Lines: https://twitter.com/jonastsn1050/status/560126412078993408 https://twitter.com/markhmasters/status/560131498968641536 https://twitter.com/markhmasters/status/560131954671362048 Injury Updates: https://twitter.com/jonastsn1050/status/560141020491702272 Wednesday Links: Elliotte Friedman: 30 Thoughts -- Leafs & Mike Richards (Sportsnet.ca) Calgary and Toronto were reported to be the two teams most involved in a Richards trade. I do believe the Dion Phaneuf-Richards idea was seriously considered, although other pieces were going to be involved. I don’t know which team asked, or how the overall package was going to look, but word is the Kings ultimately said no to any deal because they were unwilling to include either Tanner Pearson or Tyler Toffoli. Jonas Siegel: Franson unsure of Leaf future as trade talks swirl (TSN.ca) Already looking tight with next...
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Peter Horachek speaks with members of the media following Wednesday's morning skate.

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Monday's happenings: D Dion Phaneuf is expected to be out "week-to-week" with an upper body injury (hand, from last week's fights). D Stephane Robidas left the ice before practice started. F Leo Komarov is expected to return Wednesday against the Devils, while F Joffrey Lupul and F Peter Holland remain day-to-day. D Petter Granberg and F Josh Leivo were recalled from the Toronto Marlies Practice Pairs: https://twitter.com/markhmasters/status/559839038438662144 Can you say yikes... Tuesday Links: Anthony Petrielli: Will NHL Teams Start Using NBA Cap Relief Ideas? (MLHS) This is the way the league is going, and it is prevalent to a Leafs team that will possibly/probably want to move guys like David Clarkson, Dion Phaneuf,...
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Peter Horachek speaks with members of the media following Tuesday's practice.

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Much, if not all, of the grief he received this weekend was in good fun. Still, it seems odd how many people forget that Kessel deserves the respect of … you know, a perennial All-Star. Monday Links: James O'Brien: The hockey world's been awfully hard on Phil Kessel (Pro Hockey Talk) As amusing as some of this stuff is, perhaps it should also prompt a moratorium on Kessel mockery. Let’s face it, the 27-year-old’s been receiving a disproportionate amount of grief for basically his entire NHL career. Kevin McGran: Maple Leafs push centennial wishlist at All Star bash (Toronto Star) The Maple Leafs, with...

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In late November, Canadian hockey fans mourned the passing of legendary coach and player Pat Quinn. He was a two-time NHL Coach of the Year, with the 1980 Philadelphia Flyers squad and the 1992 Vancouver Canucks in 1992. He never brought home the Stanley Cup as a coach, but he did lead Canada to Olympic gold. When people talk about Pat Quinn, they speak of him as a good man and a good coach. However, they also remember Quinn the player, and the thing they remember most is the 1969 hit that knocked out Bobby Orr. Although he and Orr...

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Toronto Marlies head coach Gord Dineen on William Nylander's debut in last night's 3-0 loss to the Hamilton Bulldogs: Saturday Links: Maple Leafs Hot Stove: Eventful night for Phil Kessel at the NHL All Star Draft (Video) The player least interested in the spotlight took center stage again at the NHL All Star Draft. Mike Zeisberger: Phil Kessel wants to remain a Leaf, says 'I love Toronto' (Toronto Sun) Yet, through all the scrutiny, all the Phil-bashing, all the white noise coming from the outside, Kessel is steadfast in his desire to remain in Toronto. Sean Gentille: NHL All Star Draft -- Finally, it was fun...