Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mike Ulmder of MapleLeafs.com,
In dropping a 2-0 decision to the Nashville Predators, Tuesday, the Maple Leafs lost their fourth straight game.
During that time they have been outscored 16-6.
Four hundred and fifty Americans, and by extension 45 Canadians, fall out of bed and die every year.
The Leafs, playing without skill defenceman Mike Van Ryn and the suspended Mikhail Grabovski, could only garner 17 shots on winning goalie Pekka Rinne and a puny four shots on five power plays.
In North America, a new case of dementia presents itself every seven seconds.
from Tim Wharnsby of the Globe and Mail,
The talent that surprised several opponents earlier this season is no longer getting the job done, according to head coach Ron Wilson. His team heads into its match against the Nashville Predators Tuesday night on a three-game slide and has dropped seven of nine outings.
“I know where our talent level is, and when you’re not blessed with a lot of talent there will be inconsistencies,” Wilson said.
read more and that story was in the morning edition of the Globe and Mail.
This afternoon, Don Cherry was on Fan590 and did not think much of Wilson’s words.
This feud has been going on since the moment Wilson was hired by the Leafs. I wonder what the next chapter will bring?
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
Burke knows what it’s like to have the wrong goalie. He lived too long with Dan Cloutier in Vancouver to know better, and enjoyed the fruits of Jean-Sebastien Giguere’s labour while in Anaheim. One goalie was at his best when it mattered most. The other was just another guy.
What Burke needs to determine sometime between now and the end of the season is: Can Toskala be a starting goaltender on a winning team in Toronto, or will he have to look elsewhere for the next Leafs goalie?
This is the end for Curtis Joseph and with Pogge there is no certainty, no indication yet if there will be a beginning. Pogge isn’t, in anyone’s opinion, lighting it up in the American Hockey League. He is in the middle of the pack among AHL goalies. That is no ringing endorsement on his future. But were Toskala in the middle of the pack, which he is not right now, the Leafs concern in net would not be so substantive.
from Dave Stubbs of the Montreal Gazette,
The 24-year-old Belarus-raised native of Potsdam, East Germany, was suspended an automatic three games yesterday by the NHL for abuse of an official. Grabovski tussled with linesman Scott Cherrey in his overzealous effort to get at Canadiens’ Sergei Kostitsyn.
The players never managed to dance, despite their best efforts, and both were handed misconducts for their vigorous efforts. Grabovski was given a game misconduct as a bonus.
There is bad blood between these two, litres of it. Apparently it has to do with Kostitsyn’s distaste for things Grabovski is alleged to have said about himself and his brother, Andrei, to Russia’s sensation-seeking sports media.
(Ask Alex Kovalev about that.) But a feud needn’t be based on anything, of course, and it seems that before theirs is done, these two are bound to change their names to Hatfield and McCoy.
Toronto Maple Leafs forward Mikhail Grabovski has been suspended for three games after shoving an offical Thursday night. Sources tell Hockeycentral the Leafs are contemplating appealing the league decision.
Grabovski received a game misconduct for shoving a linesman late in the third period of Thursday’s 6-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre.
added 11:15am, via TSN,
The three game suspension for abuse of official is automatic, and the Maple Leafs have chosen not to appeal the ban.
Mikhail Grabovski of the Leafs trys to get at Sergei Kostitsyn of the Canadiens. The video tells the rest of the story…
Here is the game recap from the CP via TSN.
from Mike Ulmer at TorontoMapleLeafs.com,
For an idea just what Burke is facing, let’s take a look at the grid for opening night, 2011-2012, two and a half seasons from now.
The Leafs desperately need to get younger. To that end, I have limited the top two lines and top two defensive pairings to players 25 years or younger on opening night. Keep in mind, there will always be room for productive older players. Nik Hagman will be nearly 32, but it’s hard to think his game would not be welcome somewhere on the roster.
On defence: Luke Schenn. He’s a sure bet. A little below Schenn, put Jeff Finger in the depth chart. Anton Stralman has the talent to be a top four defenceman but it’s impossible to accurately predict whether he will make the jump. I like Jonas Frogren’s mean for the third pairing and based on his ever improving play, Ian White might be considered in the mix.
But for top four, we have one guy, Schenn.
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
When Paul Holmgren took over the down and out Philadelphia Flyers at least he had Mike Richards, Jeff Carter and Simon Gagne to build around.
When George McPhee began the process of starting over with the Washington Capitals, he could point to the drafting of Alexander Ovechkin as the starting point toward success.
When the Pittsburgh Penguins began to blossom, the future came primarily from the selections of Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby in the drafts of 2004 and 2005.
This is Brian Burke’s problem. There are no Ryan Getzlafs and Corey Perrys awaiting him as there were in Anaheim. There are no Carters, Richards, Malkins or Crosbys on the way.
Fan590 reporting Brad May will be a Leaf. Toronto giving up a conditional pick.
added 12:36pm, Confirmed by TSN.
via Terry Koshan of the Toronto Sun,
Could some members of the Maple Leafs be fitted for a new jacket of the blue variety?
The Columbus Blue Jackets have had scouts shadowing several teams lately, and had two at the game Thursday night at the Air Canada Centre between the Leafs and Buffalo Sabres.
Nik Antropov and defenceman Pavel Kubina are said to interest Jackets general manager Scott Howson. And you have to figure Leafs GM Brian Burke, now just over a month on the job, is dying to make a deal. Burke apparently has told the Jackets that he gladly will move players with contracts to get draft picks in return.
Columbus also has a big interest in New York Islanders centre Doug Weight, who said last week he does not want to be a rental again.
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.
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