With the playoffs set to get going tonight, and the Leafs vs. Bruins on tap for Wednesday, I figure that this is a good time to take a quick pause and look back at the regular season that was.
I'm sure that after the playoffs are over we'll take another look back and evaluate things on a bigger scale, but for now I just want to reflect on some games that I feel produced some key moments for the team, and just as importantly, the fans. [more…]
The drought is over.
I don't need to say much more than that.
It's been a pretty awful nine years, but considering that we'll be tuning in to CBC for a Leafs playoff game next week, I think it's time to look back and exorcise some of the 2004-2012 Leafs' demons that we've hopefully talked about for the last time. Well, at least without crying our eyes out. [more…]
After doing a great job of gathering up points over the past couple of weeks and pushing themselves well in to the playoff picture, it wouldn't be a big surprise to see the Leafs hold off on any trades going in to the deadline this Wednesday. But despite the amount of success the team has enjoyed this season, there are some glaring weak areas that could be addressed, and players may become available that could help Nonis bring this club to a higher level.
We've seen the Calgary Flames finally give in to a rebuild in the past week with the departure of Jarome Iginla, and the Buffalo Sabres have been known to be in fire sale mode for a little while now. As Wednesday approaches, other teams will have to make a decision on which direction they're headed, and potentially start putting bodies on planes as well. [more…]
With the NHL lockout behind us and anticipation building ahead of a season that will start next week, a lot of the discussion surrounding the league has started to focus on actual hockey again. Not the business of hockey, but lineups, coaches, potential roster movement, the salary cap, and so on. It's great. [more…]
There isn't a lot to talk about this morning, as things on the NHL front have gone pretty silent. Other than that we're (for the [more…]
Despite this being "the most important week of negotiations", there's been basically nothing in terms of CBA/lockout news since last Thursday. It's nothing to panic about; after reading the solid material Mirtle at the Globe and mc79 have pumped out over the past few days, I'm pretty confident that we'll see a resolution to this whole thing soon. But until we do, let's enjoy the news and notes from other leagues, as well as a few history lessons and another look at how the Leafs may fare when this lockout ends.
Kyle the Reporter has some notes about the Marlies this week in his regular hot and cold article.
Michael at Vintage Leaf Memories asks "What's your first ever true "blue and white" Leafs' memory?"
According to the Gazette, Leafs fans have voted Bower the best goalie in team history.
Cam at The Leafs Nation discusses whether the team is well-positioned for the new NHL when this lockout ends.
Blue Chip Prospects takes a closer look at Captain Dion.
And lastly, Clarke MacArthur will join a team in 2nd Bundesliga of Germany.
Photo: Carlos Osorio / Toronto Star
With CBA negotiations set to get going again today, a sort of bizarre chunk of news regarding the NHL's public relations plans came about yesterday evening. The league has hired a GOP strategist to test its PR moves, including what's being called the "shared sacrifice" pitch. [more…]
The NHL and PA will get together again today. Nothing will come of it, we'll complain about it on the internet, and there still won't be NHL hockey. At first I would've said "there still won't be hockey" but I've joined the folks who are pushing for other leagues to get attention. The NHL is the best hockey league on this planet, but it isn't the only one.
There isn't much to talk about that hasn't already been covered in the past couple days regarding the Leafs. But there are some good hockey links available this morning so take a look.
The OHL is looking to cut down on fighting, the NHL wants to identify divers around the league, and it seems like folks are really starting to embrace the upcoming hockey season one way or another. One league or another, I should say.
Oh for three (TLN)
Percy relaunches with Steelheads (The Star)
Biggs excited to get everything going (The Star)
Grabovski frustrated by the lockout (The Sun)
Leafs to play in Stirling-Rawdon in 2013 (CityNews)
Western Conference rivalries shaping up ahead of OHL season kick-off (Kyle the Reporter)
Everyone saw this one coming from a mile away, but we'll take hockey news where we can get it: Nik Kulemin is officially heading to the KHL to join Evgeni Malkin and Sergei Gonchar with Metallurg Magnitogorsk.
Kulemin has played 142 games with the club in the past, from 2005 to 2008 before joining the Leafs' organization.
There's been some discussion over the possibility that, should the lockout drag on for months, Kulemin may not bother returning to the Leafs, though they'd badly need him. Obviously we're far from that now, but it's something to keep in mind considering he is playing in his hometown.
Regardless, a positive to take from this is that a young Leafs player will keep his skates on the ice against good competition and will move the puck with some good linemates. That may not be the case for all locked out NHL'ers this winter.
There are even rumblings that Sidney Crosby's reps have contacted Metallurg as well.
A few links for your Monday morning after the jump;
Hockey is in the air. Players around the NHL have finally started to take to the ice for scrimmages and practices, despite the whole lockout thing.
There isn't anything to report on the CBA front, but hopefully with the sense that hockey should be around the corner, the folks in charge can buckle down and get something set up. Though it isn't necessarily about hammering out a deal over the course of many hours, as Clarke MacArthur mentioned yesterday:
â€œIt just shows thereâ€™s still some work to be done,â€ said MacArthur. â€œMaybe instead of going at it every day, itâ€™s better to take some time. And think things over, and reassess."
With talks stalled, maybe MacArthur is right and when the NHL and PA get back to it, they can do so with more reasonable proposals.
Another round of CBA talks, and another week void of good NHL news in terms of trades, signings, or anything of the sort.
We're now stuck in this empty space where it's tough to speculate on the upcoming season because we're unsure as to whether there will be one.
That didn't stop The Hockey News from rolling out their annual NHL Standings prediction piece, where the Leafs were slotted 12th in the East. Fair.