(Thursday Mashup) Maple Leafs considering Tony Granato as potential assistant coach, Dave Nonis meets with media ahead of draft

(Thursday Mashup) Maple Leafs considering Tony Granato as potential assistant coach, Dave Nonis meets with media ahead of draft

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According to Darren Dreger, the Maple Leafs have been talking to recently let-go Pittsburgh Penguins assistant coach Tony Granato about filling one of three assistant coaching vacancies in Toronto.

The off-season following Pittsburgh’s Cup win, Granato joined Pittsburgh as an assistant to Dan Bylsma (also coached under Bylsma in Sochi). Granato’s focus was the forward units and the penalty kill, which for the most part was a success under his watch.

Granato would also tick off the box of having prior head coaching experience having taken over the Avalanche bench on two separate occasions (2002-04, 2008-09, amassing an 104-78-17 record). The Avalanche made the playoffs in both 2002-03 and 2003-04, but Granato was dismissed after 1st and 2nd round exits, respectively. A roster that included Peter Forsberg, Joe Sakic, Paul Kariya, Teemu Selanne, Rob Blake, Milan Hejduk and Alex Tanguay was expected to go deep and Granato was reassigned to an assistant’s role.

Granato’s exit from Colorado in 2009 was acrimonious, as GM Pierre Lacroix began pursuing Patrick Roy as his next coach while leaving Granato to twist in the wind, technically still in possession of the head coaching job which he took over from Joel Quenneville prior to the beginning of the 2008-09 season. Lacroix’s pursuit of Roy failed and he didn’t really have a choice but to go in a new direction, hiring Joe Sacco and letting Granato go. The Avalanche scored under 200 goals that year en route to the third overall pick (Duchene) in the draft.

If Granato is brought in, it’s likely to take over the Leafs‘ wayward penalty kill. His results in Pittsburgh suggest there’s some sense in that. The Penguins’ PK finished first in the League in his first season in Pittsburgh, 3rd the year after, 25th in 2012-13 (with a rebound to 92.3% in the playoffs), and 5th this past season (note: received a league-best .911 SV% in 4v5 situations, 15th in CF%).

Nonis Meets the Media Ahead of Draft

Shocking, months of talk about the Leafs trading up isn’t going to come to fruition. Worry not, big changes are a—

Nevermind.

Some good news for last:

Thursday Afternoon Links:

Alec Brownscombe is the founder of MapleLeafsHotStove.com, where he has written daily about the Leafs since September of 2008. He was also the editor of the 2009-12 Maple Leafs Annuals. You can contact him at [email protected]
1289 comments
Kouba
Kouba

Is Ehlers a bad pick at 8th? I have seen some footage and it seems like he can control the game on his own, we would need Roberts for him in the offseason though :)

Leafs_17
Leafs_17

Just get Komarov signed so I will have something to cheer for

Cloud09
Cloud09

Leafs are going to spend right to the cap again aren't they? 

deedrag
deedrag

Maybe there was something more to the Burke, Nonis and Dion charity event?

Cloud09
Cloud09

WTF is up with Leafs looking at Michalek?? Don't understand how there is a match there.

Cameron19
Cameron19

Do we officially know the salary cap for next year yet?

wiski
wiski

Habbss ‏@Howiead  

@mirtle: Nonis doesn't rule out Reimer coming back.” How about reversing that Reimer doesn't think Nonis will be around much longer

DJBrianBurke
DJBrianBurke

@HHT A major reason I hate the Pens. It was a joke. It really was disgusting and Exhibit A for changing the draft system.

Tim Horton
Tim Horton

@Hammertownleaffan no way, no how, there is a ton of more skilled offensive talent to be taken before him. If he goes top 10 it will because a team is reaching for a Dman not BPA.

loomx
loomx

@Hammertownleaffan It's an okay pick. A very safe pick, I wouldn't mind him, but I think there are better options at 8.

Murph2417
Murph2417

@wiski Ugh, worst movie ever.. I quit watching it 15 minutes in.

wiski
wiski

@Cloud09 me neither, maybe mistaken for Milan Lucic 

Murph2417
Murph2417

@wiski "The Toronto Maple Leafs did inquire about the availability of Jason Spezza..." McKenzie said during an Insider Trading segment on TSN.caon Thursday afternoon. "Not because they wanted him in their lineup, but they were maybe looking at parlaying him, flipping him to someone else as part of another transaction..." 

Tim Horton
Tim Horton

@loomx @Tim Horton @Hammertownleaffan Based purely on offensive production/average rankings I think tier 2 in no particular order is; Ehlers, Fabbri, Ritchie, Nylander, Virtanen, and possibly Kapanen. 


These guys should be off the board before Fleury is considered.  

Murph2417
Murph2417

@wiski @Murph2417 Same thing I was doing on PEI, Accounting. Much more opportunity here though, nice pay raise and potential for more haha