Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Taking a look at the Leafs 2011 Draft

The 2011 NHL draft has come and gone and Brian Burke has added nine lucky youngsters when it was all said and done. The Leafs made a minor move by trading their 30th overall and 39th overall picks to Anaheim to move up to the 22nd overall spot. We take a look at who the Bud drafted.

Tyler Biggs (Forward) 22nd Overall Pick
USA (Under 18)
GP: 48 G 17 A 11 PTS 28 PIM 112
  • Prototypical power forward who embodies truculence. He has decent hands and can drive to the net while delivering big hits
Stuart Percy (Defense) 25th Overall Pick
Mississauga St. Michael's (OHL)
GP: 64 G 4 A 29 PTS 33 PIM 50
  • A smart player who is rarely caught out of position in his own end, he guards the puck well and makes passes well in all three zones

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Maple Leafs trade for Colorado's John-Michael Liles

Brian Burke has made a move just on the eve of the NHL draft acquiring offensive defensemen John-Michael Liles from the Colorado Avalanche for a 2nd Round pick in the 2012 draft that the team acquired from the Boston Bruins as part of the Tomas Kaberle trade earlier this season.

The 30 year old Indiana native picked up 46 points last season and has 275 points over his career in 523 games played. Liles has 1 year left on his contract that pays him $4.5 million a season but has a cap hit of $4.2 million and was taken by the Avalanche in the 5th round of the 2000 NHL entry draft, 159th overall.

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Monday, June 20, 2011

Who the Maple Leafs may target on July 1

The Toronto Maple Leafs will try once again to make the post season for the first time since the lockout as restless Leafs Nation fans await to see what general manager Brian Burke does come UFA time on July 1st. The Buds need a top line center, another one or two players for the bottom six forwards a puck moving defensemen and a veteran backup goalie.

The Leafs GM may fill a gap or two come draft day but nothing is certain except that the salary cap has been increased to $64 million for next season with the Leafs currently having about $25 million to spend. They will need to lockup restricted free agents Luke Schenn, Clarke MacArthur and Tyler Bozak which should cost the club about $8 million a season for all three while unrestricted free agent Tim Brent is all but a lock to return back for a small increase bringing spending room down to about $16 million.

Maple Leafs bring in new coaching staff

The Toronto Maple Leafs have brought in two new coaches to add Ron Wilson next season as the club looks to end their post lockout goose egg in making the NHL post season, gone are Tim Hunter and Keith Acton and in are Scott Gordon and Gregg Cronin. Leafs GM Brian Burke brings in two more Americans to the Blue and White.

Scott Gordon is the former Head Coach of the New York Islanders and posted a 64-94-23 record, he was also Wilson's assistant coach on the silver medal winning USA Olympic team of 2010. Gregg Cronin has been the Head Coach of the Northeastern University Huskies of the NCAA for the past six seasons.

On another note the Buds signed defensemen Carl Gunnarsson to a 2 year contract worth $2.65 million over two seasons.

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Thursday, June 9, 2011

Maple Leafs sign James Reimer to 3 year contract

The Toronto Maple Leafs have signed upcoming restricted free agent James Reimer to a new three year contract for a reported $5.4 million which amounts to a friendly cap hit of $1.8 million a season. Reimer took full advantage of injuries sustained to goaltenders ahead of him on the depth chart last season to wrestle away the number one spot and earn a hefty raise from $600,000.