A game rife with goals, end-to-end action, controversy and paroxysms of passion... without getting into specifics, this was a belter of a tilt tonight and one that hinted at a renewed rivalry between two age-old foes. [more…]
Twelve games into the NHL season and the Leafs have garnered a 5-4-3 record. Considering NHL critics predicted the Maple Leafs to get humiliated this season, they are one of the biggest surprises so far.
1) The Maple Leafs have slogged through one of the toughest schedules across the league for the month of October, playing only three teams below the .500 mark, and currently sit 4-3-3. [more…]
This evening's 3-2 loss was another tough one to swallow for a Maple Leafs team that largely outfought the Tampa Bay Lightning throughout the course of the game. There appeared to be only one real area where the Maple Leafs fell short in this one... star power. The Tampa Bay Lightning's Vincent Lecavalier pulled off a few moments of magic which proved decisive. Backstopped by a stingy Mike Smith, the Lightning were sturdy defensively, but on top of their 39 shots on target, the Leafs missed the 6x4 on an inexcusable 19 occasions (believe it or not, only 2 were off the stick of Jason Blake). [more…]
*A little late posting this - my apologies. But RG's foresight was bang on...
Yes, yes it will.
The Belorussian native is struggling amidst his rookie season â€“ still searching for a point on the score sheet â€“ but it's not as if the speedy center isn't trying, in fact, he's displaying the work ethic head coach Ron Wilson is demanding.
In the ultimate act of callousness by league schedulers, the Maple Leafs will open their regular season account inside the Joe Louis Arena, where they will endure the pre-game banner raising ceremony for the Stanley Cup winning Detroit Red Wings. [more…]
Mark Bell's career in Toronto seems to be all but over. The 28-year old from Ontario joined the Leafs along with Vesa Toskala at last year's draft shrouded under the cloud of an impending DUI sentence. With that cleared up this past summer, many Leaf fans hoped for a revival of the Mark Bell that scored 25 goals in Chicago during the 2005-2006 season. However, it was quite evident that Bell never managed to put it together in training camp or in the exhibition games that the Leafs played. [more…]
Tank Nation rejoice.
A pattern of close, competitive losses is emerging in Leafland, equating to a 2-5-1 pre-season record.
These performances include bright showings from the team's youth, hitting, shot blocking and entertaining hockey. [more…]
With tonightâ€™s preseason game just a few hours away, there appears to be a shift of mood in the locker room for the duration of the preseason. It looks as if the days are numbered not only for those who wonâ€™t be joining the regular crop this year, but also for a few regulars.
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Itâ€™s time to take a closer look at the Maple Leafs roster for the upcoming season. As much as some of the younger players have performed well this pre-season, there seems to be too many one way contracts with a death grip on much of the opening night roster.
A momentum swing in Wednesday's 3-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins can be largely attributed to a couple of in-game changes orchestrated by bench-boss Ron Wilson.
The starting first line of Mikhail Grabovski, Nik Antropov and Alexei Ponikarovsky proved ineffectual in the first frame and rookie Nik Kulemin wasn't clicking with line-mates Nik Hagman and Alex Steen. The team failed to generate anything in the way of offense until late in the third, when Wilson's ad hoc lines began to fire, mounting a near come-back with two goals in quick succession. [more…]
It's time for Ponikarovsky to step up.
No more excuses. The now-Canadian citizen is going to have display his talent and prove to the Leafs why he should rejoin them in the long-term. The six-foot-four, 220 pound sniper has shown glimpses of being top-six forward quality, but that's as far as he goes before falling back into inconsistency.