State of the Leafs entering 2011 off season

This is the first of several posts I will dedicate to what I expect the Leafs will do this upcoming off season.  In this post I outline where the Leafs are at now and what holes need to be addressed over the summer months. The Leafs ended the 2010-11 season on a high note being backstopped by solid goaltending from James Reimer and an improved offense including significant offensive contributions…

May 24, 2011
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The Career Progression of Grabovski-Kulemin-MacArthur Line

The best and most consistent line for the Maple Leafs this past season was the Grabovski-Kulemin-MacArthur line.  This trio of forwards are all just entering their primes at ages 27, 24 and 26 respectively and they were the second, third and fourth leading point producers on the Leafs.  I thought it might be interesting to take a look at how these three guys careers have progressed up to now.  Here…

April 21, 2011
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Score Effects on Shooting Percentage

I thought this debate had been fully hashed out already but apparently some people still don’t believe that the game score has an impact on shooting percentage (and shot quality).  The following table shows the shooting percentages by game score over the past 3 seasons (2007-08 to 2009-10) during even strength situations where neither goalie is pulled for any reason (including delayed penalty situations). Situation Shots Goals SH% Prob<= Prob>…

March 15, 2011
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Kaberle and Building through the Draft

First off, it should be a sad day in Leaf land as we all say good bye to Tomas Kaberle.  It seems many people are unaware of just how good Kaberle was and still is.  Here are some facts about Tomas Kaberle: Since Kaberle entered the NHL in 2008-09 the only defenseman with more assists than Kaberle is Niklas Lidstrom and only Lidstrom, Gonchar and Pronger have more points. Since…

February 18, 2011
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Score Effects on Save Percentage

The score of a game influences how a team plays.  When a team is trailing they play a more aggressive offensive game, when they are up a goal or more, they play a more defensive game.  The question I answer today is, how does score influence a teams save percentage. To answer this question I looked at the past 3 seasons of 5v5 even strength save percentage data when the score is…

January 6, 2011
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Nine Teams with Goaltending Questions

As we head towards the start of the 2010-11 season, lets take a look at 9 teams who may struggle in goal. Philadelphia Flyers – Michael Leighton has been a waiver claim 4 times in the past 4 years and another time was traded straight up for a 7th round pick.  Despite playing well at times last year, he isn’t anyone I’d be comfortable depending on and he will be…

October 2, 2010
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Who is Burke targeting in Kaberle trade?

When Brian Burke makes a trade more often than not he does it by targeting players and going hard after them until he gets them.  He did this with both Phil Kessel and Dion Phaneuf.  He identified them as players he needs to fill a hole on the roster and went hard after them.  If Brian Burke is to trade Kaberle he will probably do the same.  He isn’t going…

July 2, 2010
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What will Leafs do on July 1st

As always, there is a lot of speculation as to what the Maple Leafs will do on July 1st when the NHL free agent season begins.  Some are suggesting they should go big or go home and do whatever it takes to sign Ilya Kovalchuk as the answer to their offensive woes while others believe Kovalchuk is going for the big long term contract to which Burke has said on…

June 30, 2010
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Leafs, Canes, Oilers Trade Deadline Predictions

The Leafs, Hurricanes and Oilers are the only teams in definitive selling mode as we approach the Olympic break and subsequent trade deadline and with the way things are going there may not be all that many other sellers out there. So for now, let’s stick with these three teams and Ilya Kovalchuk and make some predictions on whether the following players will be traded and what kind of return…

January 28, 2010
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Why Leaf Fans should be Optimistic

I am going to come out with complete 2009-10 season predictions for the eastern and western conferences later today or tomorrow but for now let me focus on my favourite team, the Maple Leafs. Coming out of training camp there is a lot to be optimistic about the Leafs future. Nazem Kadri showed very well in his first NHL training camp and gave every indication that he has a bright…

September 30, 2009
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