Home Tags Posts tagged with "Vesa Toskala"
Now that the 2008-09 regular season has officially ended, it’s time to take a look back over the roster to assess each of the Maple Leafs’ players.
Note that I’m only including players who finished the season with at least one game played for the Maple Leafs, and am excluding those traded away during the course of the season.
Statistics for those who were acquired mid-season reflect games played as members of the Maple Leafs only.
According to Swedish sports newspaper Aftonbladet, the Maple Leafs are frontrunners for the services of Farjestads goaltender Jonas Gustavsson as the 24-year-old sets his sights on crossing the pond for the ’09/’10 season.
As the goals against continue to pile up, so do the questions regarding the Toronto Maple Leafs’ future between the pipes. Last night’s 7-5 drubbing at the hands of the Boston Bruins officially moved the Leafs to the basement of the NHL in terms of goaltending and defensive play with an astounding total of 274 goals allowed (3.41 GAA). Combine that with a league worst 88.4% save percentage and you’ve got some serious issues. The team directly above them? Andrew Raycroft and the Colorado Avalanche. Ugh.
JUSTIN POGGE (# 29) â€“ G
Birthdate: April 22, 1986
Hometown: Fort McMurray, Alberta
â€œThe Day after Yesterdayâ€ (the prequel to â€œDay after Tomorrowâ€). These two things have a lot in common. Millions of people watched it all unfold, hoping the guy in the lead role could do the impossible and save the day (it didnâ€™t happen, the world still froze over and the Leafs still donâ€™t have a second 1st round pick). There was a serious injury that needed medical aid (Toskalaâ€™s hip/groin, and Laura Chapmanâ€™s blood poisoning). And everyone was running around frantically once they found out about the strange phenomenon (Guy 1: â€œHey look, a giant tsunami!â€ Guy 2: â€œWho cares, Andy Wozniewski was traded!â€ Guy 1: â€œYou’re right! That’s far more bizarre.â€)
Toskala will go under the knife (groin and hip surgery). Looks like Gerber has the reigns. This could be interesting.
Burke picks up defenseman Eric Reitz, who, in addition to being a formidable glove dropper, has been offensively productive at the AHL level (34 points in 48 games with the Aeros last season). At the NHL level, Reitz has been more of a seventh man who can add some toughness to the blue-line in the event of injury.
As the Leafs consider shutting down Vesa Toskala for the balance of the season, Martin Gerber should add some insurance until the end of the season, at which point Gerber’s contract expires. There was a time when Gerber was a premium puck-stopper. It’s easy to forget after Ward’s playoff heroics that Gerber was the one who got the Canes into the playoff position in the first place. That said, his career’s gone down the shitter since. Nonetheless, it’s a very low-risk move and speaks to Burke’s unwillingness to quit on the season under any circumstances for the fans’ sake.
On a night where the real buzz was focused on mounting trade talk, the Leafs tied a NHL record for consecutive overtime games.Â Vesa Toskala played an exceptional game in net, and the Leafs came alive in the third period to transform an otherwise dull game into an exciting back-and-forth goaltender’s battle. After an almost full five minutes of riveting overtime play, Toronto eventually succumbed to an Oduya winner.
1) Brian Burke’s received two offers of a second round pick for Dominic Moore. Burke’s trying to up the ante in order to also land a 4th rounder in 2009 as the Leafs are without one.
2) Looked into it… the Martin Gerber rumour has some legs as the Leafs consider shutting Toskala down for the balance of the season. It’s no secret that there is zero trust in Curtis Joseph at this time and Justin Pogge’s currently struggling to hold down the starter’s position in the AHL. For the season ticket holders’ sake, Burke does not want to be perceived as though he’s throwing in the towel on the season if he elects to shut down VeTo. A move such as this would undoubtedly upset the pro-tankers among us, but to stay as competitive as possible through to the end is a Burke trade mark. Gerber’s contract expires at the end of the season, so if Burke opted to pluck him off re-entry waivers it would be a case of no harm, no foul, at least from Burke’s perspective.
3) A source I spoke with said he would be surprised if Burke settled for anything less than a first rounder in return for Nik Antropov.
Elliotte Friedman of CBC is reporting that the Toronto Maple Leafs have expressed interest in putting in a waiver claim on veteran goaltender Martin Gerber. It’s speculated that this surprising interest may be a result of two possible scenarios:
#1 – The Leafs have lined up an appropriate trading partner for Toskala and need a veteran goalie to stick in the net for the rest of the season.
#2 – As rumored for the past few weeks, Toskala may indeed be hurting and the Leafs may choose to shut him down for the rest of the season as he undergoes surgery.
-Draft pick be damned, being 7-1-1 in our last nine against the Senators is truly heart-warming. P.S., it’s time to point the finger where it needs to be pointed, Bryan Murray… trade Jason Spezza and shake things up in the old country club. Also trade Nick Foligno. To us. For Hollweg.
Here’s the latest from a trusty source.
On the Antropov-Chicago rumours heating up:
“Chatter has Hawks VERY INTERESTED in Antro and that talks have really heated up. Rumor is Burke’s interested in the Hawks’ young d-men, i.e. Duncan Keith.”
There are three major defenseman that are available – Kaberle, Pronger and Bouwmeester – and several teams are jockeying for position for all of them. A handful of teams would be happy with any of them.Â If you had to put money on Burke, Martin or Murray, who would you bet on to get the most out of a dealâ€¦exactly.Â Burkeâ€™s got ‘em exactly where he wants them and would prefer that one of the aforementioned d-men gets moved first as it will provide him even more leverage.”
In a shaky and at times sloppy game, the Leafs pulled out of yet another overtime with a shootout win.Â Vesa Toskala had a night in net that was a simple summary of his season to date: solid at times, with glaring weaknesses and questionable play marring his effort as a whole.Â Nonetheless, in a tilt that saw another Leaf rookie debut and a season stalwart leave the game with an injury, Toronto ironically secured two points against one of the very teams that many “tank-minded” fans badly want to see move up in the standings.
As the Trade Deadline approaches, speculation will continue to grow over which Maple Leaf players may be moving on to new NHL destinations.
The following is my own personal estimation of the likelihood of regular roster players actually getting dealt, based upon contract status, playoff/stretch drive impact potential, comments from players/coaches/management, and of course the metaphorical smoke & fire (the amount of repetition in the rumour mills).Â Â To quote the great Chazz Palminteri, “a rumour’s not a rumour that doesn’t die”.
On a night where we can say the “Sundin Saga” came to its exciting and fitting end, the Leafs played a second straight game where they showed the hard work and energy that was so characteristic of their early-season stretch of hockey. Upon the shootout conclusion of this game, I received three different messages all musing over the same thing: “Whoever scripted this game did it perfectly.”Â In the steady, reliable fashion that Leaf fans became accustomed to over thirteen years of service, Mats Sundin skated down the ice and with apparent effortlessness netted the shootout winner for his team.Â Except this time, he was doing it for the Vancouver Canucks.
First of all, I know what youâ€™re thinking, and weâ€™re thinking it too; the â€œtorchâ€ for the upcoming Winter Games looks retarded. Anyways, it comes as no surprise as yet another team tries out their backup goaltender against the Leafs this season. Last year, by the end of January, the Leafs played 23 games against backup goaltenders in which they were 4-17-2. This year, same story, different team. Toskala looked to rebound back to his great 40 minutes in the Panthers game, but instead showed up as the guy who played the last 20 minutes and let in 3 goals in less than 10 minutes.
So the Leafs are interested in throwing their hat into the ring as netminding bad boy Ray Emery looks for a new home? Somebody should warn Brian Burke about Razor Rayâ€™s aversion to head gear following his altercation with Atlant Mytishchiâ€™s team trainer Roman Sokolov last month. Yes weâ€™ve all had a good laugh on YouTube at the expense of hockeyâ€™s self destructive answer to Britney Spears but hot of his hat phobia fisticuffs Emery has now walked out on the KHLâ€™s second best team for another far more disinteresting reason.
For all the hype surrounding the seemingly inevitable fight between Grabovksi and Kostitsyn, the two Belorussians were not quite at the forefront of a very chippy game between the Leafs and the Canadiens.Â The animosity apparently encompassed both squads, as the tone was set early by a first period showdown between Georges Laraque and Brad May.Â As is the case with most matchups of these two rivals in Montreal, the crowd’s energy fed into a quick-paced sixty minutes that saw both teams control the play in the offensive zone for lengths of time on end.
Many Leaf fans are counting down the days until Draft Day 2009, when we anticipate that our beloved Leafs will draft the franchise player that will lead the blue and white to the promise land. Some dream of John Tavares after witnessing him lead Team Canada to Gold at the WJC. Others dream about Evander Kane and his amazing hands or Brayden Schenn, who seems to be the Burke archetype we could all potentially revere. What you’re not typically finding on fans’ wish lists is a defenseman, which most aren’t prioritizing due to the fact we have, in some beliefs, eight NHL-caliber d-men. We do lack the type of star player upfront that can potentially compete for the league lead in goals. So I ask the question: is that really what this team needs right now?
A heedless penalty from Alexei Ponikarovsky in the closing stages of the third period and a predictable Vesa Toskala pratfall in the subsequent overtime period undid a strong effort from the Maple Leafs that was deserving of the two points tonight.
Prev1...567...9Next Page 6 of 9