The Leafs wrapped up what was a pretty good weekend by imploding in the third period and losing handily, but that doesn’t take away from some of the positives that were shown overall.
There were some youngsters who had good weekends, others who had very good weekends, and a few who struggled. In other news, the Leafs also have a new player coming to training camp in Mason Raymond.
You know hockey is back when there are actual relevant games and players to talk about all of a sudden. Here are some scattered thoughts on the weekend that was:
MLHS’ Anthony Petrielli chatted with Garth Malarchuk, amateur scout for the Maple Leafs, earlier this week. Topics covered include the ins and outs of his job, Frederik Gauthier, Morgan Rielly, and a little on Tyler Bozak.
Director of Amateur Scouting Dave Morrison is a great interview (video) when it comes to the Leafs prospects and the scouting process. In case you missed it, or if you prefer the written word, here’s the transcript of his thoughts on each Leaf draftee from Sunday’s draft.
The old saying in hockey is that defense wins championships, and defense was the theme of the day for the Leafs yesterday even though they didn’t acquire a single defenseman.
The Leafs opted for size and two-way ability down the middle at 21st overall, drafting a 6’5, 214-pounder out of Quebec in Frederik Gauthier. As a player who “needs to work on his offensive game” and who was under a PPG in the Q (worth noting that he broke his jaw during the season), this pick may be a little on the safe side compared to say, the higher offensive ceiling of Hunter Shinkaruk (who slid down and was available at 21). That said, there’s no denying the value of a good centerman and the need for depth at the position. How you feel about this selection depends on whether you like the late-first-round approach of safer picks with strong fundamentals or if you would prefer to role the dice a little on higher upside.
Profile after the jump.
As the playoffs head into their final weeks, it’s become clear once again that size does matter. The ability to win battles along the boards, play a punishing physical game and own the front of the net has allowed the Boston Bruins to steamroll through the New York Rangers and now the Pittsburgh Penguins. I have no doubt that Maple Leafs is paying close attention and is eagerly counting down the days until the likes of Joe Colborne and Tyler Biggs are ready to suit up for the club on a full-time basis. Should they so choose, there may an opportunity to add even more size up front with their 21st overall selection this June. Next up in our 2013 NHL Draft Series is the powerful two-way centre out of Rimouski, Frederik Gauthier.