During my interview with Scott Gordon, the Leafs assistant coach said something that caught my attention when he noted: “This year our top six is [made up of] guys who have had pretty good track records of scoring goals.”
The injury to Joffrey Lupul for the majority of the shortened season really put the lineup out of whack. As Grabovski played a shutdown role, the Leafs second scoring line was basically MacArthur-Kadri-Frattin for quite some time until Lupul returned and the line turned into Lupul-Kadri-Kulemin, a unit which no doubt did some serious damage.
This summer the Leafs threw big money at David Clarkson to round out the top six forwards while adding some jam to the group, and it’s pretty safe to say the Leafs top six wingers will be Kessel, JVR, Lupul and Clarkson to start the season.
I thought it was interesting of the Leafs to allocate so much cap space to the wings and for Gordon to then bring up their track record with us at MLHS. With that, I wanted to see how the Leafs stacked up against teams across the league. Here are the results based on the 2011-12 and 2013 seasons (max GP/player within these parameters is 130):
|Teams||Top Six Wingers||Goals/Points/Games||Total Goals||Total Points||Games||PPG||Total Cap Hit|
|Tampa Bay||St. Louis||42/134/125||110||310||384||0.81||$15,500,000|
Note: Not every team has a clear cut group of top six wingers. If I wasn’t sure about who to fill out the group with, the general rule of thumb I went by was taking the next highest scoring winger on the team; to me, that best indicates the fire power a team has. For example, with Pittsburgh I’m betting Beau Bennett eventually claims the final top six winger spot, but going into camp that spot is up for grabs between a bunch of players such as Bennett, Matt D’Agostini and Jussi Jokinen (yes, I realize he played mainly center in Pittsburgh, but he can do both). I wrote in Jokinen since he was the highest scorer. Even for the teams where I’m fairly confident about the composition of their top six wingers — like Yakupov in Edmonton over Hemsky — I stuck with the guy who has more points to better represent the scoring prowess of teams across the league.
– First thought: If the Bolland line is the excellent shutdown unit the Leafs seem to think it can be, the Leafs should win enough games. They have good goaltending and can clearly score, so they should be in good shape if they have those two things and an excellent shutdown line to complement them. That seems to be the plan.
– The Leafs’ 0.80 PPG ranks them second to only Tampa Bay’s 0.81 in scoring by top 6 wingers. Their $20,150,000 allocated to their top 6 wingers is sixth most league wide. Their 167 goals stand second to only Pittsburgh.
– Would be nice if Lupul could stay healthy. He’s missed 48 of the last 130 games.
– Kessel is unbelievable. If you didn’t catch this stat, he is tied with Martin St. Louis for the most points by a winger over the last two years.
– You can see why the Ducks want Teemu Selanne back.
– New Jersey probably surprised quite a few people with their ranking. Their top six is old, but they still know how to score. The Devils have a strong one-two punch down the middle with Zajac and Henrique, plus they have Schneider now. I believe they will be better than people think.
– Winnipeg’s problem is goaltending, but most people have known this for a while.
– For one reason or another, I thought Ottawa would be higher. Ryan is a big name, MacArthur is a decent scorer and Michalek has been good when healthy, but who the final top six winger will be is unknown. Michalek hasn’t been able to stay healthy either which has hurt them.
– Not that it’s all the current GM’s fault, but Columbus sure spends a lot of money on subpar(?) production from their top six wingers.
– Even though the top three teams on this chart are elite, I don’t necessarily believe there is a strong correlation between having a high scoring group of wingers and winning. That said, it’s nice to see those teams rank well because the Leafs are clearly putting their eggs in this basket.
lol http://forum.calgarypuck.com/showthread.php?s=766c3eb37a6dcc82ed40ef4c1a1c39a5&t=86158&highlight=phaneuf+trade+stajan&page=2 when phaneuf got traded to us
It astounds me how @Greg Fenton can laugh and ridicule us for saying how much we love Kessel and how he's a franchise player, and then when we call him out he claims it wasn't him.
I'm bored and although I doubt anyone really cares, I decided to look with a little more detail at the claim (made several times by the Leaf organization) that the Leafs close the gap in being outshot when it comes to quality shots. Yesterday I looked at the Playoffs and posted it somewhere in this thread. I did the same thing just now.
I looked at shots from the top-middle of the circles to the goal line, justifying this as a quality shot. Because I got bored of doing this, I only did March and April.
MAR - Shots For = 328 --- Shots Against 382 --- Diff. -54 (0.86)
Qual. Shots For = 163 --- Qual. Shots Against 176 --- Diff. -13 (.93)
APR - Shots For = 275 --- Shots Against 403 --- Diff. -128 (0.68)
Qual. Shots For = 148 --- Qual. Shots Against 193 --- Diff. -45 (.77)
I did not do this to start up a Corsi debate. Just lonely and looking for some positive outlooks. In terms of quality shots they do fare better (7-9%). Does this mean anything at all... Who knows? GO LEAFS GO.
Holy ,I just discovered a site On Facebook called Leafs Rule and they welcomed me after I told them it was purley accidental ,Leaf fans abound everywhere lol
Toronto Maple Leafs, National Hockey League of Nations
(Ed. Note: Welcome to the Puck Daddy 2013 summer project, the National Hockey League of Nations.We’ve recruited 30 writers/blogs to identify the best player in their favorite team’s history for each major nationality that creates the fabric of our beloved NHL: Canada, USA, Russia, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Sweden, Finland and The Rest of The World. It’s their criteria, as long as they can justify it. Read, debate and enjoy! If you want to do so on Twitter, it's #NHLoN.)http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/toronto-maple-leafs-national-hockey-league-nations-194253374.html
How did it work on the cap with Tim Thomas when he decided to not show up for the last year of his contract? I know the Islanders elected to keep the cap hit on the roster, and that's why they "acquired" him, but did the Bruins have the option of suspending him and removing his cap hit?
Im really liking USAs team...
Parise Kane Ryan
JVR Pavelski Kessel
Callahan Kesler Pacioretty
Brown Stepan Galchenyuk/ Okposo
AAnd take your pick for goaltending WOW
Quick, howard miller, Anderson
Another great write up Anthony, thank-you.
I'm very curious to see what kind of impact Bobby Ryan has in Ottawa. He has shown flashes but to me he is a bit of an under achiever and is not overly physical. Then again the only time I see Anaheim is an occasional play off game.
@lukethenuke So awesome. Just barely getting into it...can't wait until they learn who they get.
@Spayde_D so it looks like they did close the gap, but are still significantly behind the other team. Although, can't rely just on stats.... but this confirms our suspicions that Reimer is indeed a great goalie
@DeclanK lol ,u beat me posting this ,I was surprised re the history and the humour
Yes the Bruins had the option of suspending him and removing the cap hit.
@Cameron19 well that's awkward....we usually look to you for answers....
Settle down. He's no lock to make the team, or even the top 6.
@dlb eh Yes he is awesome.......i LOVE KESSEL :)
@dlb eheven the great Chara struggles to shut Kessel down .yea and Kessel isnt afraid of no Chara ,he can suc it to lol
Bias aside, I'd put Kessel on the 1st line. That'd be a super fast line.
@lukethenuke Also, I won't be surprised if he makes it, but Johnson is terrible. I doubt Yandle plays on the top pair, too. He doesn't even do that for the Coyotes.
@lukethenuke There's no way Kessel is playing on the 2nd line in favor of Bobby Ryan. That said, it'll be Kane on the right wing on the top line - he's not a center. More likely:
Parise - Pavelski - Kane
J.V.R. - Stastny - Kessel
Pacioretty - Kesler - Ryan
Brown - Backes - Callahan
@lukethenuke holy crap that 2end line looks deadly for some reason
@Jantz It's important to note that he's been very unhappy in Anaheim the last two seasons. He could explode in Ottawa given the increased spotlight and his desire to earn the big bucks on his contract extension.
@DWCMLHS Michalek Spezza Ryan could be scary especially on the pn with karlsson
@Greg Fenton I agree with what you are saying about Kessel in general, but it probably applies to most goal-scorers in the league.
Why do you try to argue on here? From what I have seen it always turns into everyone circlejerking in how much they hate you (warranted hatred or not).
Here's an idea, instead of bitching about kessel, how about you put your ridiculous stat fetish to work by finding those exact stats about other players and then build an actual case with your evidence.