Kukla's Korner Hockey
Entries with the tag: vesa toskala
from Curtis Zupke of the OC Register,
It looked awkward to see Vesa Toskala in his Toronto Maple Leafs goalie mask juxtaposed against his Ducks practice jersey when he took the ice Sunday.
Toskala had been idled for six days waiting for a work visa to join the team, but he still had his old mask.
He was eager to shed it for a new one.
“Hopefully soon,” Toskala said. “So I can wash that blue and white out of my gear.”
“I don’t think I’m a backup goalie,” he said. “I obviously want to play a lot, and I know how good I can play. But like I said earlier, there are lots of things you can’t control in this league. I just do whatever I have to do here to help the team make the playoffs.
“I’m not going to complain or anything. If it’s my call, I would play every game because I love to play. When I play a lot, I play my best.”
via the Twitter of Helene Elliott,
Jean-Sebastien Giguere has waived his no-trade clause and officially will be dealt to Toronto very soon
added 12:56pm, from Darren Dreger’s Twitter,
Giguere to Toronto for Toskala and Jason Blake. Done!!
added 1:05pm, TSN on the trade…
added 1:08pm, Burke says there was never a discussion about a first round pick being involved (from the Ducks). He doesn’t know where that came from.
from Terry Koshan of the Toronto Sun,
The Maple Leafs netminder offered little resistance as four goals flowed past him in a span of 11 minutes, 16 seconds in the second period, giving the Buffalo Sabres all they required for a 5-2 win over Toronto at the HSBC Arena.
The outburst came on just six shots, drowned a 1-0 Leafs lead thanks to Viktor Stalberg’s first NHL goal and led to the yanking of Toskala in favour of Jonas Gustavsson, who made his first appearance since leaving a game on Dec. 1 with heart problems.
“We’re not getting any saves, everybody gets shaky and you suffer breakdowns trying to run around,” Leafs coach Ron Wilson said. “If you make mistakes, you have to buckle down and get the job done. Unfortunately, (Toskala) did not and I had to get him out of there.”
Remember the embarrassing goal Toskala allowed to New York Islanders defenceman Rob Davison in March 2008? Davison’s shot from 197 feet skipped past Toskala one night on Long Island, making the goalie the butt of jokes and giving him a spot on highlight reels.
Well, Toskala came close to outdoing himself.
read on and watch a goal Toskala wish he had back during the Leafs loss to the Sabres Friday night.
via the Twitter of Jonas Siegel,
John Mitchell out six weeks with a knee injury. Vesa Toskala will miss the upcoming trip with a groin injury.
from Elliotte Friedman of CBC,
There is a theory going around that one of the reasons for Toskala’s poor start is he’s having trouble adjusting to Allaire’s different style.
Tuesday morning, Toskala disagreed with that hypothesis.
“Who’s saying that?” he asked.
I told him I’d read it in a couple of articles and heard it discussed on television.
“All the big things are pretty much the same,” he said. “Every coach is similar, there is nothing unusual. I feel good.”...
Anyway, I relayed this story to another goalie on Thursday, and he disagreed. He understands Toskala’s refusal to make excuses, but says there is a big difference between the two men’s preferences.
“Toskala is all about getting out and challenging [the shooters]”, he said. “Francois is adamant how he wants his goalies to play. He is all about being a blocker ... taking away the net, covering up all holes and limiting gaps.”
According to TSN, Vesa Toskala is said to be done for the rest of the season. He’s been placed on IR and hip and groin surgery which will make him unavailable for the next 4 months.
Related: Martin Gerber picked up by the Leafs earlier today.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
Ron Wilson joined the pile on his goaltender Friday, a couple of days after his boss, Toronto Maple Leafs president and general manager Brian Burke, gave Vesa Toskala a public spanking.
“No, I don’t disagree,” the head coach said of Burke’s charge that Toskala does not work hard enough in practice. “I would have expected Vesa to have much better numbers at this point. He’s been inconsistent at best.
“I want to see him practise harder. You can say you’re saving something in practice for the games. But if you are failing in certain parts of your game, the only thing to do is practise harder. We are talking to Vesa about that.”...
“We have to have better numbers,” Wilson said. “You can’t have 20 shots and five go in. We have to get closer to a .900 save percentage.”
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 Jim Kelley at Sportsnet,
I’m not arguing that a Toskala move needs to be made today or even before Burke’s self-imposed Christmas no-trade zone (beginning Dec. 9). I’d even argue having him stay on until the Leafs establish an identity and where they are likely to finish this season, but at some point down the road, if Burke follows his game plan, goaltending has to be the No. 1 issue.
Burke knows that. His coach, Ron Wilson, knows that. Anyone who has watched Toskala’s total contribution in a Leafs uniform can at least suspect it.
He’s good; but not Stanley Cup championships good.
Toskala’s goals against average, including a solid effort Monday night in Los Angeles is 3.02, good enough for 34th on the NHL stats list. His save percentage a paltry .891, a not so good 38th place. But if teams are going to go big in this league and be a true Cup contender it can’t have goaltending that’s just good, it has to be great.
From Eric Duhatschek at the Globe & Mail,
It figures to be an interesting goaltending match-up Tuesday night when the Toronto Maple Leafs open their western Canadian trip in Calgary to play the Flames. Not only do the Flames’ Miikka Kiprusoff and the Leafs’ Vesa Toskala both hail from Finland, they were both groomed in the San Jose Sharks’ organization and both traded away so that Evgeni Nabokov would be that organization’s clear-cut No. 1 netminder.
Kiprusoff and Toskala are considered among the NHL’s goaltending elite, but their numbers don’t reflect that at the moment…
A drive from the bottom of the circle…
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
Toskala did not immediately win over the Leafs’ fans, who were certainly clamouring for a new hero in goal after Andrew Raycroft wobbled badly. But Toskala was playing in the Eastern Conference for the first time and he also had to grow accustomed to being the go-to guy every night.
“When I changed teams, it takes a little time to get comfortable, but [playing a lot] makes you mentally stronger,” he said. “I think every time you play it makes you better.”
In that case, he should be Superman pretty soon. There is no end in sight for Toskala’s consecutive starts, not with the Leafs having to win almost all of their final 15 games to have any hope of making the playoffs.
from the National Post via Canada.com,
They first met two years ago while playing for opposing hockey teams in Finland. But it took a month of sharing the net for the Toronto Maple Leafs this season for Vesa Toskala and Andrew Raycroft to become off-ice friends.
The two goaltenders dine together, swap iPod playlists and cheer for the same Formula One driver. Even their girlfriends seem to be getting along.
“It’s nice to have a guy there that you can relate to and be friends with and cheer for,” Raycroft said. “I want him to do well. Especially, through good times and bad, you can sit there and kind of go through it with someone else.”
from the Toronton Sun,
Yet before the Maple Leafs goaltender officially is declared a flop across the board, a voice of reason last night might help this sudden city-wide panic to end.
That person was none other than San Jose Sharks general manager Doug Wilson, who watched Toskala come up through his organization to emerge, in his mind, as one of the upper echelon goalies in the game.
“I understand the passion of the fans and that’s wonderful, butI’m not sure you want to judge him after just two exhibition games,” Wilson said in a phone interview from San Jose. “He is a very good goalie and I predict he will play very well for the Toronto Maple Leafs.
“He is very mentally tough. He’ll be able to handle the (spotlight) in Toronto.”
From the CP via Yahoo! Sports,
A trio of Eastern Conference teams feel they’ve made themselves better this off-season by acquiring goalies who couldn’t hold on to No. 1 jobs in the West.
Trades brought Tomas Vokoun to Florida, Manny Fernandez to Boston and Vesa Toskala to Toronto this summer and every one of those teams is hoping those guys can carry them to the playoffs.
Expectations might be a little high.
All three have shown some shaky form during the pre-season, although it would be foolish to put too much stock in the exhibition play.
Filed in: NHL Teams, Boston Bruins, Florida Panthers, Toronto Maple Leafs, | KK Hockey | Permalink
Tags: boston+bruins, florida+panthers, goalies, manny+fernandez, tomas+vokoun, toronto+maple+leafs, vesa+toskala