Kukla's Korner Hockey
Who's next to 'pull the crest'?
from Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star,
... around his dressing room stall he stores a humbler collection — specifically a stack of sweat-soaked baseball caps for wear during on-camera media interviews. Occasionally he chooses a cap bearing the logo of his team. Most of the time he opts for one emblazoned with that of a longtime sponsor, Red Bull, the so-called energy drink.
The man who wears the C said in a recent interview that he’s had an endorsement deal with the brand for about eight years. The Leafs’ former CEO figures that’s about long enough.
“For the captain to be wearing that hat — I’m disappointed. You can quote me on that,” said Richard Peddie, who was the top executive at the company that owns the Maple Leafs until his 2012 retirement. “I would look for better from a captain. A captain sets the tone in so many ways, especially in hockey, especially on the Leafs.”
Peddie said Phaneuf should show respect “for the people who pay (him)” by wearing a Maple Leafs cap when he’s speaking for the team.
Buffalo TV showed an overhead replay of the goal and which made it look like the puck never went in the net.
But this view shows the twine on the top of the net bulges, so looks like a good goal to me, which it was.
added 9:21pm, Watch the goal from the overhead below...
from Luke Fox of Sportsnet,
Realistically, the Toronto Maple Leafs might have just 14 potential trading partners as the playoff bubble team looks to upgrade for the stretch run.
“There’s a lot of talk now. Because of the Olympic break and the March 5 deadline, there’s starting to be a lot of discussion out there. It's a tricky situation,” Toronto VP and assistant general manager Claude Loiselle told Sportsnet The Fan 590 Wednesday morning. "A lot of teams in your own division, particularly when the standings get this tight, they don't want to deal. It's hard to make a trade with a team that's tied with you or one or two points behind you."
"So you tend to look to the Western Conference, and that cuts out half the teams you're going to be trading for."
Not only are six teams within two standings points of the Leafs, but Toronto is a team already using LTI (Dave Bolland) and is tight up against the salary cap.
One name that repeatedly comes up in Leafs trade speculation is that of centre Nazem Kadri. Loiselle admits that Kadri's chemistry "for one reason or another" with linemate Joffrey Lupul has evaporated.
read on for more rumor talk...
from Damien Cox of The Spin,
In the summer of 2016, unless he extends his contract between now and then, Stamkos will be an unrestricted free agent. There are those who believe that playing for the Leafs would be a dream for Stamkos, although you often hear that about this player or that player.
Still, the attraction of going home helped the Leafs sign David Clarkson, whether you like that one or not.
The Leafs would like to believe that the Markham-born Stamkos may be thinking something along the lines of the way Zach Parise was thinking in the summer of 2012 when he targeted the Minnesota Wild, hardly an NHL powerhouse, as his destination of choice so he co
Of course, Stamkos wouldn't be free for another two summers, which gives Tampa and owner Jeff Vinik loads of time to get him locked down.
from Stephen Whyno of the CP at The Score,
Upon closer inspection, it didn't look like van Riemsdyk interfered with Schneider.
"I just think that in that situation, specifically, when you review it on replay, it's hard to take the side of the official," Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said. "I don't know any other way to put it politely."
That the Leafs managed to win 3-2 in a shootout relieved some of the frustration. But had Bozak's goal counted, it could have meant a rare regulation victory for Toronto, which has just two in 26 games dating to Nov. 21.
"If you had told me I was going to sign with the Toronto Maple Leafs and get a 10-game suspension, try to get back into the good books and battle... It's been catch-up all year, I haven't been myself. I'm not happy with the way things have gone.
"But, to be a professional, you have to go out there and work hard and try to find a way around it. It's easy to complain about it. I've got to find a way to get back to work and do what I'm asked. Whatever role that is that Randy (Carlyle) wants me to go out and play, I have to do that. That's the bottom line. .Am I happy with the way things have gone? No.
"There's no way I'm happy. A 10-game suspension and you're behind the eight-ball. I'm a big believer in first impressions and mine was sitting in the press box while everyone gets 10 games in. Then you're trying to catch up. The first 10 games of the season is really when the season gets going. It's been a very tough year, but that's part of sports."
-David Clarkson of the Toronto Maple Leafs. More on Clarkson and the Devils too from Rich Chere of the Star-Ledger.
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
So, unless you believe Leaf history should just keep repeating itself, let’s just end this conversation that Carlyle should go, OK? Ditto for the chatter about these players quitting on this coach. If that’s the case, it says a lot more about the quitters than the coach.
Whether Carlyle is or isn’t liked is simply irrelevant. It’s about whether he can get the most out of this team and is given a reasonable opportunity to do so.
Let’s start with a realistic look at what he has to work with at this time.
He’s got some good scoring forwards, but that gets thin outside of the top six. One of those players is Nazem Kadri, a 23-year-old centre who has yet to play more than 48 games in a single NHL season. In general, the club lacks size and toughness on the wings.
On the back end, Carlyle doesn’t have a single reliable pair, and he’s working with 23-year-old Jake Gardiner and 19-year-old Morgan Rielly, two blueliners who are very much in the apprentice stage of their NHL careers.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
No compete. No consistency. Nothing.
We seem to be watching the Toronto Maple Leafs season unravel right before our eyes. Sure, it has essentially been trending in the wrong direction for the last two months, but during that spiral down the standings the players could always point to the fact that they remained in a playoff position.
Well no more.
The Leafs now have to look up in the Eastern Conference, which is going to be awfully tough to do since so many of them seem to be hanging their heads. The talk after a win at the Winter Classic on Jan. 1 was all about how it should serve as a springboard to new heights for this team. In the eight days since, they’ve stumbled through what should have been a relatively each stretch of schedule with an 0-3 record – getting outscored 18-5 in the process.
There are still 93 days and 37 games left to go before the post-season positions are crystallized. That’s an awfully long time and an awful lot of hockey. However, it doesn’t minimize the suddenly precarious position Toronto finds itself in, especially considering that it marched through October with a 10-4-0 record.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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