Morning Mashup: Liles recalled

158

Good morning Leafs fans, another week is upon us and it sees the Blue & White heading west to take on Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver.

Bozak has been placed on the Injured Reserve, which – regardless of what you think about the de-facto first line centre – is a blow to this Leafs team. I would expect Kadri to continue to fill in at his position for the time being, but I’m also hoping that a little more ice time combined with a higher quality set of linemates leads Kadri to get in a bit of a groove. Kadri is the team’s most-skilled centerman, and he needs to produce if this banged-up team is to continue to build on their strong start.

Elsewhere in the Atlantic division, the Buffalo Sabres traded Tomas Vanek to the Islanders in what is likely the first of many trades as the Sabres dismantle their team and aim low for a good draft pick this season.

Breaking News: The Leafs have just recalled John-Michael Liles from the Marlies – an extra defenseman for the Western road trip and a nice opportunity to get back among the team for Liles, who took the whole demotion thing pretty well. Likely means Kulemin will remain on LTIR for the time being.

Some links on this sunny Monday morning:

Mirtle’s piece on the opportunity Kadri has with Bozak out of the lineup
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/leafs-beat/leafs-injuries-open-hole-for-kadri-to-shine/article15113075/

Shoalts’ post-game article on Saturday’s win over the Penguins
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/leafs-beat/shoalts-leafs-get-shutdown-effort-from-bolland-and-phaneuf/article15103105/

TSN with a quick injury update on the Leafs
http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=435154

Ulmer’s blog on MapleLeafs.com about often under-appreciated Carl Gunnarsson
http://blog.mapleleafs.com/the-invisible-man-the-carl-gunnarsson-story/

TSN’s story on the Vanek trade
http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=435220

 

  • The_Irv

    djamon The_Irv I believe it does…. The 925k in savings from burying a contract essentially gets Mason Raymond on the team. 
    It’s not the only reason sure, but I’m sure it plays a part. I think he looked better than Ranger in pre season.

  • B_Leaf

    Optimustic 
    That explains it

  • Uncle Otis

    DeclanK 
    I could beat Naz’s record of a minute
    #puck bunny

  • Dan39

    CanuckUKinToronto The showcasing aspect just makes too much sense…

  • Mind Bomb

    CanuckUKinToronto Prolly because  some NHL team wants to see Liles for a couple games before they make the deal :)

  • vinoa

    djamon B_Leaf I don’t know about that. Right now Ranger’s averaging just under 20 minutes with over 30 hits, 3 assists, and a +3 over 12 games. Komisarek can barely crack the Canes’ lineup. Paul Ranger may not be a stud, but to say he’s playing like Komisarek suggests that people must either have serious blinders on or people forgot just how bad Komi was for us.

  • Dan39

    CanuckUKinToronto Last two games he has been better than Brennan. Over the course of the season, Brennan has been better.

  • The_Irv

    B_Leaf The_Irv 
    I agree physicality is important. But I think the team is having to bail this guy out too often. Komisarek was physical, but he couldn’t keep up with the game. 
    Don’t get me wrong I don’t mind giving Ranger a look, but I think Fraser will be more effective when he is healthy. 
    IMO Ranger is getting this long of a look because they want to give him a chance to play the way he had in Tampa. If his mistakes continue beyond 20 games or so I would not be surprised to see him out of the lineup.

  • GreekGod

    Dan39 GreekGod TheCanucksnaphook B_Leaf 
    Lots of guys play well in the AHL but can’t do shit in the NHL. We’ve given Ranger quite a few games to find himself. What happened to accountability? If you don’t play up to your standards then you need to sit. And the thing is, we aren’t asking much from Ranger. Play the body and make that first pass. That’s it. Dude was skating behind his net trying to stop Gaborik when all he needed to do was pin him against the boards… Jake Gardiner and Morgan Rielly have been doing it. Why can’t a 215 pound Ranger not??

  • djamon

    vinoa I’m not necessarily saying he’s been as bad as Komi…just that some people are saying the same thing we were saying about Ranger as we were saying about Komi back then. We had no idea how bad Komi would end up being, but we held out hope for well over a year.

  • Optimustic

    Thanks, here’s the boxscore if you’re interested. http://theahl.com/stats/game-summary.php?game_id=1011215

  • Mind Bomb

    CanuckUKinToronto Mind Bomb nice lets hope its true, Liles is a NHL D man, would be good for everyone

  • B_Leaf

    The_Irv B_Leaf 
    In no way am I suggesting Ranger over Fraser. Fraser is a lock in my mind. But I could actually Gunnar, Ranger, Rielly or Gards rotating in and out of the line-up depending on how they play.

  • .JVR.

    Burtonboy 
    I’m thinking Kessel should have probably gotten 1st Star of the Week.
    5 goals compared to Stammer’s 3 goals.  Although, Stamkos did have 4 assists to Kessel’s 1.

  • Burtonboy

    .JVR. Burtonboy Bolts won all their games so that might be a factor as well

  • djamon

    The_Irv That 925k savings is basically the same for any defenseman sent down to the Marlies. There is no more savings sending down Liles as Ranger…or Brennan.

  • The_Irv

    B_Leaf The_Irv 
    Fair enough… I guess depending on speed/physicality type game you may want to use some more toughness depending on the team.

  • B_Leaf

    GreekGod Dan39 TheCanucksnaphook B_Leaf 
    C’mon, Ranger has been physical. You have to look at  the whole picture. He physically man handled getzlaf in the Anaheim game and led directly to the winning goal. He hit Malkin hard on Saturday. He has had some good offensive plays too. He has rang to laser beam shots hard off the post…if those go in he is probably being praised by everybody.

  • djamon

    Dan39 Not everyone thought he was awesome last year with the Marlies.

  • GreekGod

    B_Leaf The_Irv 

    What you mean by toughness? So far Reilly and Gardiner have done a better job pinning guys against the boards or pushing them to the outside and keeping them there. Gunnar is up against top lines every night. Ranger is getting sheltered minutes and is still struggling.

  • Dan39

    GreekGod Dan39 TheCanucksnaphook B_Leaf It’ll be interesting to see what they do. I think Fraser has to come right back in when he’s ready. Even though Ranger plays physical, we need more physicality and Fraser’s solid, low-risk play. I think Ranger does get a longer look though. He was out for 4 years… It’s not unreasonable to expect it could take him 20 games or so. You’re saying give up on him. To me, there’s too much potential there to give up on so soon. Especially when he is improving. If he stalled, it would be different.

  • vinoa

    Dan39 GreekGod TheCanucksnaphook B_Leaf Honestly, he should just pack it in. I’m all for giving the guy a chance to play where he wants to, but I don’t think he deserves this crap. We wonder why free agents and GTA players don’t want to come here. Why would anyone? It took the media so long to realize what we have in Kessel. So far this season, Ranger’s stats are better than Girardi, Ferrence, M. Staal (pretty much the entire Ranger’s D), but those are all guys that would somehow stabilize our D over Paul Ranger.

  • B_Leaf

    TheCanucksnaphook B_Leaf 
    I have seen some issues but not the same as you. Our whole team has played like crap way too many nights. Gunnarson has had some horrid games. Our forwards have been deplorable in their own end some nights.

  • ShotgunCharlie

    DeclanK Phil doesnt seem as introverted as everyone has been saying

  • Dan39

    djamon Dan39 Yeah, Pent_House said he was shit. I don’t know how many games Pent House saw but not as many as me. I’m not a stats guy, but if you look at his stats and ice time you realize it all adds up to him being the best defenseman on the team most nights.

  • http://mapleleafshotstove.com/ DeclanK

    Stamkos, Kessel and Kesler named ‘Three Stars
    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=688856&navid=DL|NHL|home

  • B_Leaf

    GreekGod B_Leaf The_Irv 
    Well you are entitled to your opinion. I didn’t mean to be critical of anyone else. Rielly in particular has shown a lot of physical strength. Gards is doing a much better job physically last few games.

  • vinoa

    djamon vinoa We got Komi when he was coming off of an All-Star year. He had solid numbers with Markov right before we got him. Ranger on the other hand left the game for his own reasons and was brought back in by Leafs’ management. I think it’s safe to say that a guy who’s coming off of a hiatus shouldn’t be compared to a guy who finished an All-Star worthy season just months before we signed him.

  • The_Irv

    djamon The_Irv 
    Correct, however I believe there was a hope that a team would want to claim Liles saving the Leafs more cap space overall than a contract like Brennan’s or Ranger’s. (There were many teams looking for defenceman). 
    The Leafs were probably hopefully Liles would be claimed when they sent him down because A) they wanted to save cap space if he was, and B) They believe he should be playing in the NHL
    And I believe Ranger could be claimed on waivers so he wouldn’t be sent down because t hey wanted to see if he could regain his form from his days in Tampa. 
    I hear what you’re saying but for these reasons I’m fairly confident his contract had something to do with him being sent down. 
    If Ranger were claimed the Leafs lose his potential to regain form, and gain very little cap room. With Liles the Leafs know what they may be losing but think its fair to him, and will hopefully gain them cap space.

  • GreekGod

    B_Leaf GreekGod Dan39 TheCanucksnaphook 
    I have looked at the whole picture and it’s clear that he is a step behind everyone out there from time to time. So he’s hit the post once and hit Malkin… Great, kadri hit malkin 4 times last game. At the end of the day, all our other defence men have out played him and once Fraser is back Ranger will be sitting until another injury occurs… Which I hope it doesn’t :)

  • djamon

    TheCanucksnaphook He fucking loves it.

  • GreekGod

    Dan39 djamon 
    Stats also said that Colton Orr was better then Malkin, Crosby, and Kessel on saturday night…

  • Dan39

    GreekGod B_Leaf Dan39 TheCanucksnaphook Oh yeah, so Carlyle is giving him all that ice time for what? Have you looked at the TOI stats?

  • .JVR.

    TheCanucksnaphook 
    Interesting stat in all this is the fact that Moulson actually has more goals over the past three seasons than Vanek.
    However, that is mainly due to the fact he has been playing with one of the best centres in the league, while Vanek has been playing with crap in Buffalo.
    I wouldn’t be surprised at all if Moulson resigns with the Islanders next summer anyways.

  • vinoa

    Gilbey93 There’s a parody on Youtube called ‘Took It in The Bottom”, hope CBC uses that as the Sens/Habs victory song. Also, Drake sucks.

  • Dan39

    GreekGod Dan39 djamon Colton had a great game. And I just said I wasn’t a stats guy and my opinion was based on watching games – not stats. Just saying the stats support what I saw.

  • The_Irv

    djamon The_Irv Not to mention it was even stated (I’m paraphrasing) that Carlyle had a hard time sending him down because he did everything that was asked of him.
    Liles actually had a pretty good pre-season.

  • djamon

    vinoa Exactly. The leash should be shorter in Ranger’s case.
    It’s far more likely that a has guy just lost it after being out of the league for 4 years, than a guy was trying to justify his new contract and is temporarily sucking.

  • dlb eh

    “regardless of what you think about the de-facto first line centre – is a blow to this Leafs team”
    thank you.  that’s all i need.  that’s all i’m saying.

  • djamon

    TheCanucksnaphook He’s a proven producer…he doesn’t need to be hard.

  • .JVR.

    Gilbey93 
    Do you mean the Raptor’s victory song?

  • vinoa

    djamon vinoa Komi didn’t temporarily suck. He still sucks. Ranger has been steadily improving. He may never regain the form he had when he was a top defender in the league, but I mean is he not better than Kotska, Holzer, and some of the other AHLers we had in our lineup last season?

  • .JVR.

    Gilbey93
    Out of those four, I can respect what Celine has done, but doesn’t mean I have to like her and I actually don’t mind Nickelback.

  • Uncle Otis

    CanuckUKinToronto 
    I’m going to guess Wiski

  • .JVR.

    Gilbey93
    Was just wondering, because Drake’s voice should never be heard at the ACC during a hockey game!

  • dlb eh

    .JVR. 
    you got closet fan written all over your face haha

  • vinoa

    Gilbey93 TheCanucksnaphook Read that list again. If that is not the list of the worst sounding “musicians” in the history of sound, then I dunno what it is.

  • Mind Bomb

    Gilbey93 TheCanucksnaphook  Dude Anne Murray is our Biggest artist !!!!

  • Leafs rule

    Gilbey93 TheCanucksnaphook We aint 18 anymore ,and dont like gangsta rap ? lol

  • vinoa

    .JVR. Gilbey93 Didn’t he do the halftime show at the Sens’ All-Star game the other year?