Kyle Dubas discusses the addition of fighter Justin Johnson to the Toronto Marlies/Orlando Solar Bears, rumours of Cody Franson to Buffalo Sabres, and more in the links.

Friday Links:

  • Kyle Cicerella: Leafs looking to protect their future investments (Kyle The Reporter)
    “On the ice, I saw last year a number of times as the year was winding down where teams in the American league would be targeting our skilled players and we’re a very young team, so to have Justin as a guy that can serve a presence and help out our young guys know how to go about their business on the ice is important,” said Dubas.
  • Thomas Drance: What impact will Mike Babcock have on the Maple Leafs’ neutral zone defense? (SportsLoqIQ)
    Qualifiers aside, it’s interesting to note that the Maple Leafs and the Red Wings appear to be such massive outliers relative to the rest of the league. It’s even more interesting when you note that Babcock, who coached a team that probably was elite at preventing controlled entries against, will be moving to coach the NHL team that was probably among the worst in this area.
  • Stephen Burtch: Marner and Strome will score. A lot (Sportsnet)
    Marner and Strome’s averages rank 11th and 20th in OHL history for skaters under the age of 18. Others in that range include: Jason Spezza (2.07 pts/g), Joe Thornton (2.07), John Tavares (2.00), Kirk Muller (1.92 pts/gp), Owen Nolan (1.91) and Jeff O’Neill (1.91). For the sake of recent comparison, consider that both outpaced Steven Stamkos (1.72), Tyler Seguin (1.68) and Sam Bennett (1.60) fairly significantly.
  • Scott Wheeler: Maple Leafs’ Top 25 Under 25: #11 Andreas Johnson (PPP)
    An SHL Rookie of the Year award, a Champions Hockey League (CHL) goal-scoring title (11 goals in 12 games), and inaugural CHL points per game lead (2.08) later and Johnson has secured his position among the organization’s most talented, promising young players.
  • Greg Wyshynski: Cody Franson, Buffalo Sabres nearing 2-year contract deal? (Puck Daddy)
    One assumes he’d get his minutes with the Sabres, who could use his right-handed shot and veteran presence. They have Josh Gorges and Zach Bogosian in the top four. But Franson could help keep the pressure off Rasmus Ristolainen and Mark Pysyk, and limit the necessity for someone like Carlo Colaiacovo to play significant minutes. Or any at all.
  • Staff: Toronto Marlies release 2015-2016 Schedule (MLHS)

Be still my beating heart:

Which is a direct connection to this, of course: 


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