- Anthony Petrielli: State of the Toronto Maple Leafs — Part Two: The Phil Kessel Trade (MLHS)
A productive Kessel over the course of his deal, part of which the Leafs will be paying for, is a nightmare scenario for Toronto. The return is simply not good enough to justify that at this time, as there is no legitimate NHL value to be gleaned at this point for Toronto other than Nick Spaling. Maybe Kapanen, Harrington, and the collection of picks pan out for the Leafs, but hitting on a 17 and landing on 21 doesn’t mean you made a smart gamble.
- Luke Fox: New Maple Leaf Beck hungry for offensive role (Sportsnet)
The winger’s offensive leanings were stifled in Music City, where he sat behind 20-goal men James Neal, Filip Forsberg, Colin Wilson and Craig Smith on coach Peter Laviolette’s depth chart. Twice a 90-point player in the Ontario Hockey League, Beck was given a shutdown role he says he enjoyed. But the defensive task wasn’t a natural fit. A restricted free agent, the 24-year-old filed for arbitration and hoped for a trade.
- Leafs Lunch: Pellerin: Marner committed to improving (TSN1050)
Maple Leafs Director of Player Development, Scott Pellerin joins the show to discuss Mitch Marner and last week’s prospect development camp.
- Mike Morreale: Ron Wilson sees Kessel scoring 40 goals for Penguins (NHL.com)
“Pittsburgh is building a team that wants to win the Stanley Cup now, and I think Phil is only going to add to their success, so I expect him to score at least 40 goals this year and be a dominant player again,” Wilson said.
- Josh Cooper: NHLPA releases arbitration dates; Holtby, Stepan and Bernier set for late July (Puck Daddy)
The Toronto Maple Leafs filed for arbitration with goaltender Jonathan Bernier (July 31 hearing date). The Edmonton Oilers filed for arb with defenseman Justin Schultz (July 24 hearing date).
- Greg Wyshynski: Ryan O’Reilly hits Tim Hortons in new truck, charged with impaired driving (Puck Daddy)
Less than two weeks after signing a seven year contract extension worth $52.5-million, Buffalo Sabres centre Ryan O’Reilly has been charged with impaired driving after a pickup truck collided with a Tim Hortons in Lucan, Ont.
- MLHS: CTV London: Nazem Kadri preparing for challenging season (Video)
Make or break year: Maple Leaf Nazem Kadri could be facing the biggest year of his NHL career, Brent Lale reports.
- Dan Rosen: Sabres, Maple Leafs among most improved teams (NHL.com)
The Maple Leafs have made moves this summer intended to make give them a puncher’s chance in the short-term with the potential for more assets gained in the long-term, which is all the management group is focused on now. They even sold Babcock on it with the aide of an eight-year, $50 million contract, of course. It’s hard to find fault with the way the Maple Leafs are operating their rebuild. It’s calculated and it appears Brendan Shanahan and his staff are thinking one or two moves ahead with each decision they make.
- Emily Sadler: Ex-Leafs coach Gordon to coach of AHL Phantoms (Sportsnet)
Gordon spent three seasons with the Leafs under Ron Wilson and Randy Carlyle and was fired in May 2014 when Brendan Shanahan took over as the team’s president. Prior to that, the 52-year-old served as head coach of the New York Islanders from 2008-2010.
- Alex Tran: Maple Leafs 2015 Draft Review — Part 2 (MLHS)
This is a very interesting one – the traditional mantra among scouts is that it’s always better to pay a bit of a premium in order to get “your guy”. We know that the draft is a bit of a crapshoot but even still, the humanistic nature of scouting means there is a predication to fall in love with and overvalue a particular player. As a result, the value required to trade up often outweighs the upside in selecting a few spots higher in the draft, which has been demonstrated time and time again in the cumulative draft research.