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The Maple Leafs were faced with a unique opportunity to keep their top prospect in Toronto playing in the AHL, yet they elected to send him back to Sweden instead. Since 2005, 14 players drafted in the top 10 have played their draft season across the pond somewhere in Europe or Russia. There is no exact science to developing prospects and every individual person is, of course, unique. That said, odds are that some AHL time will occur, even if only for a handful of games before graduating to the NHL, provided Nylander becomes the player they hope he can be. Nylander...
Jake Gardiner

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In my last post, I looked at which Maple Leaf players are producing their fair share of the offense. In the comments to that post, a few readers wanted me to take a look at the players defensively to see who is performing up to par in that aspect of the game. Today, I'll look at the defensive side of the game in conjunction with their offensive performance. It may be worth while to go back and read it now if you haven't yet read the previous article, but I'll remind you of the process below:  If you are not yet aware,...

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Dion Phaneuf's effectiveness always seems to be a popular matter of debate in the world of hockey. This shouldn't surprise anyone when citing a player who captains an NHL team in a hockey-crazed market like Toronto while carrying a beefy cap hit of $7,000,000 per annum. Last season, Dion was subject to incredibly difficult usage at the hands of head coach Randy Carlyle. His teammate Corsi For percentage of 43.4% was the 16th lowest among all defensemen since 2007-08, while his offensive zone start percentage of 37.7% ranks lower than all but 23 blueliners in the Behind the Net era....

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If you are not yet aware, I have recently launched a new hockey statistics website at Puckalytics.com. Long-term this will be the replacement for stats.hockeyanalysis.com, but not all features are implemented yet; for now, both will remain operational. There are some new statistics available at Puckalytics.com and one of those features is the ability to find the percentage of a team's overall statistic that the player was on the ice for. I call these '% of Team Stats' and they can be found here. To explain exactly what these statistics mean, let's look at % of Team TOI. Last season, Ryan Suter...

Toronto Maple Leafs - Recent Posts

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With back to back losses to the Detroit Red Wings in the rear view, the Toronto Maple Leafs now look ahead to facing the New York Islanders on Tuesday. Things won't get any easier —Toronto is taking on a Islander team that is on fire and appears to be the real deal with a 0.800 win percentage. Trying to take positives from a team that's coming off of back-to-back losses to the Wings, the Maple Leafs haven't held a team goalless in regulation in almost a full calendar year (Oct. 29th - 4-0 win vs Edmonton). You can see in fits and starts that the Leafs...

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This was a bit of an odd game, scoring chance wise. The Maple Leafs had a superior possession performance to what they managed Friday night, but -- particularly in the third period -- they weren't able to turn that possession into scoring chances, as they generated few shots from the 'home plate' area. Jonas Gustavsson had to make saves down the stretch, but wasn't tested nearly as stringently as Jonathan  Bernier was. This shows in the chances, as the Leafs were beaten by a similar margin to Friday night's game, despite the fact it was a better game from Toronto. It was...

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The Maple Leafs will have to settle for just one point out of four as the weekend back to back versus Detroit ended with a last-second OT loss at the Joe. And a Jonas Gustavsson shutout (smh). This was a fairly even game for most of it, with the Leafs actually edging the Wings in shot attempts, 54-48 in all situations and 45-39 at even strength (they were outchanced to my eye, however). High referee involvement made the game disjointed in the first 40 especially, but it gave way to a moderately entertaining third period and overtime session. The atmosphere was more...
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Randy Carlyle addresses media following the Leafs 1-0 overtime loss against the Red Wings on Saturday night.

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The Maple Leafs are going to have to manage the puck more effectively through neutral ice and find an answer for the Gustav Nyquist, Henrik Zetterberg and Johan Franzen (who may not play... game time decision after getting injured last night) line or else it could be four points dropped to a division rival in 48 hours. The Wings' top line scored all four goals on the Maple Leafs last night, with Justin Abdelkader getting in on the action in the third after taking Franzen's spot on the top line. Zetterberg walked away with four assists on the night. The...

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Leafs Links Game 5 Scoring Chances: DET 4 vs. TOR 1 (MLHS) Game Review: Game #5, Red Wings 4 vs. Maple Leafs 1 (MLHS) Randy Carlyle Post Game – Red Wings 4 vs. Leafs 1 (MLHS) Maple Leafs' Dave Nonis at Oilers game, fuels trade speculation (The Score) Leafs revert to troubling ways as Zetterberg dominates (Siegel) Dion Phaneuf disapproves of fans throwing jerseys (Sportsnet) Leafs almost dealt Franson for his next-door neighbour (Sportsnet) Maple Leafs' Joffrey Lupul insists he's not injury prone (National Post) Joe Bowen fan? Sign this petition to get him back on TV (Change.org) Leo Komarov providing spark for Maple Leafs (TSN) Game recap from enemy territory: Domination (Winging it...

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After getting a little momentum, winning two straight games and winning the chance count against Colorado, the Maple Leafs had a disappointing return to form on the first night of a back to back versus Detroit. After an uneventful first half of the opening period, Detroit took over. Toronto responded well in the second, and despite allowing another goal, were the better team in terms of scoring chances for the first two-thirds of the period. However, in the next 20 minutes, stretching over the period break, Detroit outchanced them 10-2 at ES, opening up a bigger lead and crushing the Leafs' hopes...

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Not a good first half of a back to back for the Maple Leafs, to put it lightly. Credit where it's due, this was a well played/coached game by the Red Wings. Mike Babcock's team effectively clamped down on the neutral zone, causing turnovers and giving the Leafs’ top guns nothing off the rush (line #1 for its part packed up its bags nice and early). The start was okay from the Leafs. They were about even with the Wings in shots and in the possession battle over the first 10 minutes, were exiting their own zone fairly well and showing a decent amount...