Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Maple Leafs plan to land First Overall Pick

The Leafs continue to prepare for another season and all Leaf fans (myself included) hope to see the playoff misses end but can a team that does not have a 30 goal scorer, has a goaltender that ranked towards the bottom of every goaltending category and the worst penalty killing team in hockey be expected to fight for a playoff spot this upcoming season. The Leafs have definitely became a meaner team and will make games tougher to win for their opponents but can this team actually win enough games to make the playoffs. The Eastern Conference eighth seed usually averages 90 points to reach the dance and for the Leafs to accomplish this they would also need to actually get themselves some shootout victories as they currently have the fifth worst record since this gimmick has been in play. When you look at everything that seems to be against us then its hard to imagine this team would make the playoffs so the obvious must be that they have been built to lose. The Leafs are a meaner club and that is before the possibility of adding the meanest player as some would say in Todd Bertuzzi, as rumours swirl that he may imply his trade in the Blue and White. Maple Leaf fans will see the Leafs parade to the penalty box all season long and with the worst penaly killing in the league that amounts to loss over loss, once the Leafs are behind in the game who will come through with some big goals to bring them back, well the odds are it could be anyone but how often will that happen? The Leafs did not have one player who scored over 25 goals last season and with the exception of possibly Grabovski may not have anyone do that this season. When you take a look at the goaltending situation where a healthy Toskala or Gustavsson may stop pucks but they cant score and how many powerplay chances will they be able to keep the team off the scoresheet, my guess is not many. Then the logical situation in Leafland is that the team is looking to cash in with the first overall pick and how would that help fast track the Leafs rebuilding plan? The team would then be able to select highly touted Windsor Spitfires center Taylor Hall who has 174 points in 126 games. The Leafs need a number one center and without obtaining that through a trade or signing, the draft is the next logical choice. Taylor Hall in Toronto, Brian Burke may have done just enough to get us this potential superstar. Maple Leafs fans will have a long season ahead i just hope its one that we can see some hockey in late April but by the look of things there may be a better chance of not getting snow for Christmas.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Maple Leafs and Flames swing a deal

The Toronto Maple Leafs and the Calgary Flames have made a trade. The Leafs have sent recently acquired Colin Stuart, Anton Stralman and a 7th Round Pick in the 2012 Draft to the Flames for Wayne Primeau and a 2nd Round Pick in 2011. The Leafs look to have given up on Anton Stralman who many though would be on the roster this coming season as a puck moving defensemen if the Leafs traded away Tomas Kaberle but this does not look to be the case, unfortunately for Stralman in Brian Burke's new rough and tough regime the soft Stralman never had a chance. This does look like a salary dump deal as the Flames are barely under the cap and moved the 33 year old Primeau and his 1.4 million salary to Toronto for the season. The winning piece for the Leafs is acquiring a 2nd Round pick in the deal for Primeau who becomes an UFA next season and should spend most of the season in Toronto sitting in the pressbox. Burke continues to reshape the Maple Leafs one can only wonder what the next move will be?

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Dave Poulin joins Leafs management team

The Toronto Maple Leafs have brought Dave Poulin on board. Poulin joins the Maple Leafs as the new Vice President of Hockey Operations. The former NHLer who had stints in the league with the Bruins, Flyers and Capitals over a 724 game span worked with current General Manager Brian Burke in Anaheim and is known well to the Leafs boss. Toronto was looking for a replacement of Joe Nieuwendyk and looks to have found their man. In other Leafs news they have also re-signed Andre Deveaux and Alex Foster to one year contracts, while Darryl Boyce was re-signed to a two year contract.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

What the Leafs 23 man roster could be

The days of what has not been a great summer at all tick down and NHL training camps are just around the corner, yes folks September is five weeks away. The Leafs have made quite a few roster moves over the last four weeks with the draft, free agent signings and trades as Brian Burke looks to turn the Maple Leafs around and get the team back into the playoffs, which hasnt happened since before the lockout of 2004. We decide to take an early look at what might be the Maple Leafs starting 23 man roster come opening night October 1st versus our arch rivals the Montreal Canadiens. Coach Ron Wilson will have quite a few tough decisions to make especially on the back end where the Leafs boost at least 9 NHL ready defensemen. Here is what we think the roster will look like on opening night baring any other signings or trades by Burke and players avoiding injury.


Vesa Toskala
Johan Gustavsson


Tomas Kaberle
Mike Komisarek
Francois Beauchemin
Luke Schenn
Jeff Finger
Ian White
Mike Van Ryn
Garnet Exelby


Mikhail Grabovski
Alexei Ponikarovsky
Nikolai Kulemin
Niklas Hagman
Jason Blake
Matt Stajan
John Mitchell
Lee Stempniak
Colton Orr
Jamal Mayers
Rickard Wallin
Jiri Tlusty
Colin Stuart

The Leafs would be silly not to trade one of their NHL defensemen for a forward but at the moment with the current roster the Leafs look to carry eight defensemen with Ian White capable of playing both the back end and forward positions.

The Maple Leafs forward lines could look something like this:


This will be a harder team to play this season with the added toughness but the Leafs could definetly use a bonafide scorer among the forward corps but an interesting team to watch never the less.

Do you agree with the roster or prefer to see someone else on the 23 man roster come opening night?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

The Leafs interested in Hawks Patrick Sharp

Brian Burke continues to look around the league for a potential Top 6 forward and according to media rumours has his sights now set on Black Hawks forward Patrick Sharp. The Hawks are in cap trouble and need to get under the cap before the season is underway. The Hawks recent signing of Marian Hossa plus their recent error in getting out offer sheets for their RFAs in a timely manner has cost them more of a cap hit in re-signing these players then they would have had to pay them if the offers were sent out correctly, this now has Sharp and his 3.9 million salary cap hit the odd man out. The Hawks of course will want something back that will help the team move forward in their chase for Lord Stanley. Patrick Sharp is a 27 year old from Thunder Bay, Ontario who has scored 82 goals in his past three seasons, Sharp is also an ample penalty killer something the Leafs desperately need help in. The Leafs are said to be offering the Black Hawks Alexei Poinikarovsky in return, Ponikarovsky has scored 83 goals for the Leafs in his past four seasons and although Sharp would be an improvement on the ice, Ponikarovsky's value is instrumental in assisting the development of Nicolai Kulemin and Mikhail Grabovski as was seen towards the end of last season when the trio formed an interesting line combination. The Leafs better move would be to send Matt Stajan and possible lower round draft pick to the Hawks for Sharp. Stajan just completed his best season in the NHL with 55 points and with 1 year left on his contract at 1.75 million he would not be a long term cap hit for the Hawks and would fill the third or fourth line center role. The Maple Leafs could easily replace Stajan with John Mitchell who with increased ice time showed the fans that his back to back seasons leading the OHL's Plymouth Whalers in scoring was not a mirage. Mitchell has improved each season as a pro and the increased ice time with Stajan gone could benefit not only Mitchell but the Leafs organization. Brian Burke continues to work the phones and we should see something happen in the next couple of weeks, lets hope his next move lands the Leafs Patrick Sharp a Top 6 forward.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Maple Leafs start and end season the same way

The NHL Schedule has been released and the Maple Leafs open and end the season the same way by starting and finishing with the Montreal Canadiens. The Leafs will open the season on October 1/09 at home against the Habs before ending the season in Montreal on April 10/10, with the Olympics taking place in Vancouver in February 2010 the NHL will open the season a little earlier then usual and then shut down from February 15/10 and resuming play on March 1/10. There will be no All-Star game played this season. The Leafs will host the Stanley Cup Champion, Pittsburgh Penguins on October 10/09 and will continue this season with a home and away series against the Western Conference Canadian squads. The Leafs will also not play three times on Saturday this season those days being November 28/09, January 16/10 and February 13/09, while Hockey Day in Canada will take place on January 30/10. The Maple Leafs have yet to release their TV schedule.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Maple Leafs sign another Swede

Brian Burke continues the re-tooling of the Toronto Maple Leafs by signing Swede centermen Rickard Wallin from Farjestads. The 29 year old captain of Farjestads make his NHL return after last appearing with the Minnesota Wild 2003-04 season. Wallin lead Farjestads in scoring last season with 45 points in 55 games and finished 10th Overall in the Swedish Elite League and will be joining teammate and recent Leaf signing Jonas Gustavsson. Wallin has signed a 1 year contract with the Leafs with terms undisclosed.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

What an expansion team would look like with UFA's available

The NHL continues their frenzy pace of players moving all around the league as Day 9 of the UFA season raps up, with most of the big names locked up by now we here at TML Fan Fury will take a look at what an new NHL team would look like with the UFAs that are still available. We will add 23 players to our roster while making sure that we dont go over the NHL Salary Cap of $56,800,000.


Martin Biron

He is only goalie available that has shone in the playoffs easy choice.

Team Spot: Starting Goalkeeper
Age: 31
2009/10 Salary: $4,200,000

Nolan Schaefer

The former Shark and Wild, AHL netminder deserves a shot at the NHL level.

Team Spot: Backup Goalkeeper
Age: 29
2009/10 Salary: $750,000

Total Goalie Cap Hit: $4,950,000


Derek Morris

A well rounded defensemen to anchor the defensive corps.

Team Spot: Top 2 Defensemen
Age: 30
2009/10 Salary: $5,000,000

Jay Mckee

Defensive Defensemen who plays a strong back end.

Team Spot: Top 2 Defensemen
Age: 31
2009/10 Salary: $ 3,000,000

Marc Andre Bergeron

A power play specialist always need one of those.

Team Spot: Top 4 Defensemen
Age: 28
2009/10 Salary: $3,000,000

Dennis Gauthier

Sound Defensive Defensemen

Team Spot: Top 4 Defensemen
Age: 32
2009/10 Salary: $ 3,000,000

Dennis Seidenberg

Moves the puck out of the zone quickly

Team Spot: Top 6 Defensemen
Age: 27
2009/10 Salary: $2,000,000

Darryl Sydor

Veteran defensemen that can still play the game.

Team Spot: Top 6 Defensemen
Age: 37
2009/10 Salary: $1,400,000

Rob Davidson

Mean streak to add some muscle to backend.

Team Spot: Reserve Defensemen
Age: 32
2009/10 Salary: $900,000

Total Defense Cap Hit: $18,300,000


Mike Comrie

Can score goals in bunches and has above average hockey sense.

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 28
2009/10 Salary: $3,500,000

Alex Tanguay

Would be most gifted player on the team

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 29
2009/10 Salary: $4,500,000

Petr Sykora

The 10 time 20 goal scorer would be an asset on any team.

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 32
2009/10 Salary: $3,500,000

Jason Williams

A gifted and savy centermen, can even play point on powerplay.

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 28
2009/10 Salary: $3,000,000

Brendan Shanahan

Hall of Fame forward can still put puck in net, likely team captain

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 40
2009/10 Salary: $1,500,000

Maxim Afinogenov

A change of scenerio should spark this speedy winger

Team Spot: Top 6 Forward
Age: 29
2009/10 Salary: $1,500,000

Rob Niedermayer

Checking forward who can play anywhere up front.

Team Spot: Top 9 Forward
Age: 34
2009/10 Salary: $2,000,000

Blair Betts

Penalty killing specialist and asset to any team.

Team Spot: Top 9 Forward
Age: 29
2009/10 Salary: $1,200,000

Travis Moen

Another top penalty killer with some toughness

Team Spot: Top 9 Forward
Age: 27
2009/10 Salary: $1,700,000

PJ Axelsson

Has a great work ethic and can play any situation

Team Spot: Top 12 Forward
Age: 34
2009/10 Salary: $1,000,000

Dominic Moore

Hard working checker and team player

Team Spot: Top 12 Forward
Age: 28
2009/10 Salary: $1,300,000

Andre Deveaux

A big enforcer who sticks up for teammates

Team Spot: Top 12 Forward
Age: 25
2009/10 Salary: $ 600,000

Boyd Devereaux

Can play all three forward positions and skates like the wind

Team Spot: Reserve Forward
Age: 31
2009/10 Salary: $600,000

Peter Olvecky

A young skilled forward who plays all three positions

Team Spot: Reserve Forward
Age: 23
2009/10 Salary: $600,000

Total Forward Cap Hit: $26,500,00

TOTAL TEAM SALARY: $49,750,000

The fun part would be finding out how a team of remaining UFAs would perform against other NHL rosters unless we create a team in NHL 09 and simulate them against other teams but a first line of Sykora-Comrie-Tanguay doesnt look to shabby.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Toronto land themselves a Monster

The Toronto Maple Leafs have made another signing bringing in 24 year old Swedish keeper Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson from Farjestads. Gustavsson is said to be the best goalie not playing in the NHL and was chased by three other teams before deciding on Toronto. The Monster as he is known in Sweden posted 1.96 goals against average and a .932 save percentage in 42 games for Farjestads and lead the team to the Swedish Elite Title. Gustavsson played with current Leaf Jonas Frogren two seasons ago and may be joined by another teammate as the Leafs are said to have made an offer to Farjestads captain Rickard Wallin. We now sit back and see if the dominoes start to fall as Brian Burke continues his rebuild.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Burke signs flurry of players including UFA Beauchemin

Brian Burke continues his Maple Leaf revamp by signing a player he traded for back while in charge of Anaheim, defensemen Francois Beaucheminto has been signed to a three year deal for an average of $3.8 million per season. Beauchemin now joins a back end that includes Mike Komisarek and Garnet Exelby who wear signed and traded for respectively on July 1st. This could signal the end of the line for Tomas Kaberle as a Leaf as the team now have at least eight NHL calibre defensemen on their roster at the moment in Kaberle, Beauchemin, Komisarek, Exelby, White, Schenn, Finger and Van Ryn with Frogren and Stralman waiting in the wings. The Leafs also signed first round pick Nazem Kadri along with Ben Ondrus, Ryan Hamilton, Jay Rosehill and Richard Greenop today in what was a busy day down in Leafland.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

NHL Team by Team Moves this off season.

The Leafs are not they only team looking for a different direction many teams are looking for that, while others need that one or two players to put them over the top. There have been many team transactions since June 30 and here is a team by team breakdown of whats been done so far.


Anaheim Ducks

Signed: RW- Troy Bodie, D- Steve McCarthy, C- Saku Koivu, D- Nick Boynton

Re-signed: D- Scott Niedermayer, C- Todd Marchant, D- Brian Salcido, D- James Wisniewski

Atlanta Thrashers

Signed: C- Nik Antropov, RW- Jason Krog, G- Drew MacIntyre, G- Peter Mannino, D- Joel Kwiatkowski, RW- Anthony Stewart, D- Noah Welch, W- Josh Gratton, D- Michael Vernace

Re-signed: C- Erik Christenson, RW- Chris Thorburn, D- Nathan Oystrick, RW- Joey Crabb, C- Jim Slater, G- Kari Lehtonen, RW- Colby Armstrong, D- Grant Lewis, D- Scott Lehman

Traded for: D- Pavel Kubina, C- Tim Stapleton

Boston Bruins

Signed: W- Steve Begin, G- Dany Sabourin, D- Drew Fata, D- Zach McKelvie, C- Drew Larman, C- Trent Whitfield, D- Derek Morris

Re-signed: RW- Byron Bitz, D- Johnny Boychuk, RW- Mark Recchi, D- Matt Hunwick

Buffalo Sabres

Signed: D- Steve Montador, D- Joe Dipenta, G- JP Lamoureux

Re-signed: LW- Mike Ellis, RW- Patrick Kaleta, D- Andrej Sekera, LW- Clarke MacArthur

Calgary Flames

Signed: D- Jay Bouwmeester, D- Steffan Kronvall, W- Garth Murray, LW- Riley Armstrong, RW- Fredrik Sjostrom, W- Jason Jaffray, RW- Brian McGratton

Re-signed: D- Adam Pardy, C- Jaime Lundmark, RW- Carsen Germyn, LW- Ryley Grantham, RW- Kris Chucko, C- Dustin Boyd

Traded for: D- Keith Seabrook, D- Anton Stralman, LW- Colin Stuart

Waivers: LW- Nigel Dawes

Carolina Panthers

Signed: RW- Steve Goertzen, D- Jay Harrison, RW- Tom Kostopoulos, D- Zack Fitzgerald, D- Andrew Alberts

Re-signed: LW- EriK Cole, RW- Patrick Dwyer, RW- Michael Ryan, W- Jussi Jokinen, W- Chad Larose, D- Casey Borer, G- Justin Peters, LW- Mike Angelidis, D- Brett Carlson, W- Tuumu Ruutu

Traded for: D- Aaron Ward

Chicago Blackhawks

Signed: RW- Marian Hossa, C- John Madden, W- Tomas Kopecky, W- Matt Cullen, D- Richard Petiot, RW- Danny Bois

Re-signed: W- Troy Brouwer, G- Corey Crawford, LW- Ben Eager, D- Cam Barker, C- Colin Fraser, D- Aaron Johnson, RW- Kris Versteeg, LW- Brian Bickell

Colorado Avalanche

Signed: G- Craig Anderson, LW- David Koci, RW- Darren Haydar, D- Brian Skinner

Re-signed: G- Peter Budaj, RW- Brian Willsie, LW- Matt Hendricks, D- Kyle Cumiskey, LW- Chris Durno, RW- David Jones

Traded for: D- Kyle Quincey, D- Tom Preissing, D- Brian Fahey

Columbus Blue Jackets

Signed: G- Mathieu Garon, C- Samuel Pahlsson, C- Trevor Frischmon, D- Mathieu Roy, LW- Pascal Pelletier

Re-signed: W- Rick Nash, RW- Michael Blunden, G- Dan LaCosta, D- Marc Methot

Dallas Stars

Signed: D- Karlis Skrastins, D- Jeff Woywitka, LW- Warren Peters

Re-signed: RW- Jere Lehtinen

Traded for: G- Alex Auld

Detroit Red Wings

Signed: RW- Jeremy Williams, C- Kris Newbury, D- Doug Janik, D- Travis Ehrhardt, D- Andy Delmore

Re-signed: W- Ville Leino, C- Evan McGrath, C- Ryan Oulahen

Edmonton Oilers

Signed: G- Nikolai Khabibulin, W- Chris Minard, D- Matt Nickerson, D- Dean Arsene

Re-signed: D- Jason Strudwick, G- Devon Dubnyk, D- Denis Grebeshkov, W- Liam Reddox

Florida Panthers

Signed: D- Jordan Leopold, D- Clay Wilson, G- Scott Clemmensen, D- Ville Koisten, C- Jeff Taffe, C- Jaime Johnson

Re-signed: RW- Radek Dvorak, LW- David Booth, RW- Evgeni Dadonov

Los Angeles Kings

Signed: D- Rob Scuderi, RW- Brandon Segal, W- Jurag Mikus

Re-signed: RW- Kevin Westgarth, LW- Scott Parise, D- Joe Piskula, D- Jack Johnson, RW- Teddy Purcell, D- Drew Bagnall

Traded for: LW- Ryan Smyth

Minnesota Wild

Signed: RW- Martin Havlat, D- Shane Hnidy, D- Grag Zanon, D- Jaime Sifers, D- Jaime Frasor, D- Ryan Lannon, G- Wade Dubielewicz, C- Nathan Smith

Re-signed: G- Josh Harding, LW- Robbie Earl, LW- Benoit Poulin, RW- Danny Irmen

Montreal Canadiens

Signed: LW- Mike Cammalleri, RW- Brian Gionta, D- Hal Gill, D- Jaroslav Spacek, W- Mathieu Darche, RW- Eric Neilson, LW- Travis Moen, D- Paul Mara, G- Curtis Sanford

Re-signed: D- Chad Anderson, D- Alex Henry, RW- Mike Glumac, C- Yanick Lehoux, C- Kyle Chipchura, LW- Guillaume Latendresse, D- Shawn Belle, C- Tomas Plekanec

Traded for: C- Scott Gomez, D- Michael Busto, C- Tom Pyatt

Nashville Predators

Signed: C- Ben Guite, LW- Peter Olvecky, C- Ben Eaves

Re-signed: LW- Steve Sullivan, W- Joel Ward, D- Noel Yonkman, RW- Ryan Maki

New Jersey Devils

Signed: RW- Ilkka Pikkarainen, G- Yann Denis, D- Cory Murphy, D- Rob Davidson

Re-signed: D- Johnny Oduya, D- Andy Greene, C- Travis Zajac, C- Ben Walter

Traded for: C- Ben Walter, Tim Sesito

New York Islanders

Signed: G- Dwayne Roloson, W- Jeremy Reich, D- Brett Westgarth, G- Scott Munroe, RW- Greg Moore, D- Mark Flood, G- Martin Biron

Re-signed: D- Jack Hillen, LW- Nate Thompson

Traded for: C- Tony Romano

New York Rangers

Signed: RW- Marian Gaborik, LW- Donald Brashear, LW- Chris Chappell, C- Corey Locke, C- Tyler Arnason, LW- Ales Kotalik, D- Sam Klassen

Re-signed: RW- Pierre Parenteau, C- Brian Boyle, G- Chad Johnson, W- Enver Lisin, D- Corey Potter

Traded for: LW- Chris Higgins, D- Doug Janik, D- Ryan McDonagh, D- Pavel Valentenko, D- Nigel Williams

Ottawa Senators

Signed: G- Mike Brodeur, C- Martin St Pierre, RW- Alexei Kovalev

Re-signed: RW- Chris Neil, D- Derek Smith, W- Jeremy Yablonski

Philadelphia Flyers

Signed: G- Brian Boucher, RW- Ian Laperriere, D- Joey Mormina, C- Krystofer Kolanos, RW- Jason Ward, W- Lukas Kaspar, D- OK Tollefsen

Phoenix Coyotes

Signed: G- Jason LaBarbera, W- Vernon Fiddler, D- Adrian Aucoin

Re-signed: LW- Stefan Meyer, D- Shaun Heshka, D- Keith Yandle, D- Sean Sullivan, LW- David Spina, W- Scottie Upshall, G- Josh Tordjman

Traded for: RW- Radim Vrbata

Pittsburgh Penguins

Signed: LW- Michael Rupp, D- Nate Guenin, D- Chris Lee, W- Chris Conner, D- Jay McKee, G- Brent Johnson, LW- Wade Brookbank, C- Wyatt Smith

Re-signed: RW- Ruslan Fedotenko, D- Brian Strait, W- Tim Wallace

San Jose Sharks

Signed: - C- Scott Nichol, RW- Jed Ortmeyer, D- Joe Callahan, RW- Danny Groulx

Re-signed: D- Rob Blake, D- Kent Huskins, W- Ryan Clowe, C- Ryan Vesce

St Louis Blues

Signed: G- Ty Conklin, RW- Adam Cracknell, D- Justin Fletcher, D- Bryce Lampman, D- Brendan Bell

Re-signed: G- Hannu Toivonen, RW- Ian Schultz, D- Roman Polak, D- Danny Richmond

Tampa Bay Lightning

Signed: D- Mattias Ohlund, D- Matt Walker, LW- Stephane Veilleux, D- Kurtis Foster, G- Antero Niittymaki

Re-signed: D- Lukas Krajicek, D- Josef Melichar, D- Matt Smaby

Traded for: D- David Hale, LW- Todd Fedoruk

Toronto Maple Leafs

Signed: D- Mike Komisarek, RW- Colton Orr, D- Francois Beauchemin, G- Jonas Gustavsson, C- Rickard Wallin, D- Jay Rosenhill, C- Tim Brent

Re-signed: Mikhail Grabovski, LW- Ryan Hamilton, RW- Ben Ondrus, RW- Andre Deveaux, C- Darryl Boyce, LW- Alex Foster

Traded for: D- Garnet Exelby, LW- Colin Stuart, C- Wayne Primeau

Vancouver Canucks

Signed: RW- Mikael Samuelsson, F- Matt Pope, D- Lawrence Nycholat, D- Aaron Rome, G- Andrew Raycroft, W- Tanner Glass, D- Michael Funk

Re-signed: C- Henrik Sedin, LW- Daniel Sedin, D- Nolan Baumgartner, D- Shane O'Brien, C- Kyle Wellwood

Washington Capitals

Signed: RW- Mike Knuble, C- Brendan Morrison

Re-signed: RW- Eric Fehr, D- Shaone Morrison, C- Kyle Wilson, W- Chris Bourque, RW- Boyd Gordon, D- Milan Jurcina

Im sure there will be alot more to come.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Maple Leafs give Grabovski big raise

Brian Burke has made his next move and so far his best move of the off season signing Mikhail Grabovski to a 3 year contract for 8.7 million. The Leafs avoid arbitration with Grabovski and lock up the center long term in the process. Grabovski scored 20 goals and chipped in 28 helpers in 78 games. Grabovski is the Leafs most talented forward and if he can avoid the disappearing act for long spans he has the potential to score 30 goals this upcoming season and cant we all wait to see him go head to head with the Kostitsyn brothers again, now that was entertaining.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Mike Komisarek signs with Maple Leafs

Brian Burke continues to bulk up the Maple Leafs by signing ex Montreal Canadians defensemen Mike Komisarek to a 5 year deal worth $22.5 million. The 27 year old Komisarek lead the Habs last season in hits and blocked shots. Look for Komisarek to also bring over his ongoing feud with Milan Lucic of the Bruins to the Blue and White and I'm sure it will be fun for all Leafs fans to watch next season. Komisarek is 6 foot 4 and along with Garnet Exelby on the Leafs blueline you can beat opposing team forwards will not be spending as much time in front of the Leafs net this upcoming season.

Leafs send Kubina packing to Atlanta

The Toronto Maple Leafs have sent defensemen Pavel Kubina and the rights to forward Tim Stapleton to the Atlanta Thrashers for rugged defensemen Garnet Exelby and winger Colin Stuart returning as part of the trade package. The Leafs have opened a little more room under the salary cap and look to be setting up for another move which rumours have will be Mike Komisarek signing on with the club. Burke also continues to work on signing Chris Neil as he looks to turn the Leafs into a tougher team next season.

Brian Burke adds muscle in Colton Orr

The Maple Leafs sign their first free agent according to TSN, Brian Burke has stated all along that he would like his team to get tougher and the former Ranger Colton Orr will add the muscle the team lacked last season. The Leafs signed the 27 year old Orr to a 4 year deal at $1 million per season and may spell the end of Brad May's tenure in Toronto. Colton Orr has played in 245 NHL games and tallied five points for the Rangers last season. I'm sure Burke got tired of seeing rookie Luke Schenn drop the gloves one too many times last season and Orr becomes Brian Burke's first UFA signing.