Thursday, August 26, 2010

BoO Pre-Season Games

TUE, 21 SEP 2010 - SENATORS @ MAPLE LEAFS - 7:00 PM on Sportsnet
WED, 22 SEP 2010 - SENATORS @ MAPLE LEAFS - 7:00 PM on TSN

Not far away now folks!

Thanks to Ken Beckett over at hockeybuzz for the schedule.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

$1 million a year

Colton Orr brings the life of an NHL player to us on Twitter:

Finally managed to buy my Dad a new TV for his birthday after nearly 2 hours dealing with the dumbest Future Shop employees in the world.
via web

If I say I am looking for a TV please do not try to sell me a fucking computer.
via web

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Proof that Kabby and Wilson have some issues...

Kaberle's father over in the Czech spilled some insight into Kaberle's feelings about this whole trade circus and his relationship with Ron Wilson.

You can read an edited version of the story here.

I read the raw story and what's missing from the sportsnet version is that when Kabby's Dad said "players don't want to come to Toronto", he goes on to say it's because the fans and media put too much pressure on these guys.

Take it for what you will.

Kaberle clearly has some issues with Wilson. Apparently Thomas did not like being criticized for his defensive game last season. I personally don't agree with coaches and management who call out players publicly because it seems to always cause a ruckus, but they continue to do it in every sport at every level. Clearly somebody thinks it's a strategy with some value. Maybe it does work sometimes. I know last season Kessel got some heat from the coaching staff and down the stretch he played with more urgency and even a little piss and vinegar.

Back to the trade part of all of this, clearly Kabby will waive his NTC during the season which means Burke might have a trade and sign option at some point. Frankly, this is better for the Leafs who will be more likely to get max value for the player. Only problem is, how much of a distraction does this become if the media continue to get a hold of trade discussions between GM's?

I think I speak for everybody when I say I can't wait for training camp. It will be nice to talk about actual hockey that happens on the ice and pay some attention to some of the other 47 or so players in the Leafs system and on the team at camp.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Summer over yet?

Muppet has no off-season but I haven't been into blogging during the summer. Lately though, I've been thinking a bit more about hockey. I guess because the kids start their team selection camps soon and the nights are getting cooler.

My favourite Sens blogger Milks must be getting the itch again - a couple of good posts over at his site.

Of course, we all wait for the miracle trade that Burke will create with Kaberle. Dustin Brown? Bobby Ryan? Nope. I'm thinking a 2nd rnd pick and 3rd liner (top line in Toronto).

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Clarity on where D'Amigo can play.

It's official. D'Amigo has signed an entry level deal with the Leafs and will participate at training camp now only weeks away.

Some have questioned if he can play in the AHL or must he play in the OHL if he doesn't make the Leafs. It would appear by this transcript I found over at HF Boards (thanks ratsgirl) that D'Amigo can play in the AHL.

There is a private agreement in place between the NHL and the CHL that governs when a player coming from the CHL can play in the AHL. A player from the CHL has to either turn 20 by December 31st of the season (ie a player born in 1987 can start playing in the 2007-08 season, a player born in 1988 can start playing in the 2008-09 season etc.) OR have completed 4 seasons of junior eligibility. This agreement also covers European players if they are drafted out of the CHL (Examples would be players like Petr Vrana and Ivan Vishnevskiy). Also - CHL players are eligible to play in the AHL once their junior season is over (either by virtue of their junior team not making the playoffs or being eliminated from the playoffs) even if they don't yet meet the age or eligibility criteria listed above.

College players and European players (provided they are drafted out of Europe--even if they later play in the CHL) are not covered by this agreement. They only have to abide by the AHL's age requirement, which is that a player has to turn 18 by September 15 of any given season to be eligible to play. While you won't see many 18-year olds in the AHL, some European players have played at that age (e.g. Niklas Bergfors)

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

D'Amigo will have a crack at line-up afterall...

Jerry D'Amigo was a 6th round pick, his name called 151 spots after Kadri in 2009. And yet, ever since the world juniors when he led team USA to a gold medal, he's been talked about like he was chosen a hell of a lot higher.

At the Leafs orientation camp in early July, D'Amigo was showered with praise by the Leafs. However, it was a foregone conclusion that he would return to college and not jump to the pros.

Yesterday that changed:

The Toronto Sun is reporting that prospect Jerry D'Amigo is set to leave Rensselaer Polytechnical Institute (RPI) to sign a pro contract with the Leafs.

"If it ends up that he does leave, he's leaving for the right reason," RPI coach Seth Appert told the Schenectady Daily Gazette. "He's leaving because he has a chance to go make the Maple Leafs. He's made it very clear he has no interest in leaving to go to the Ontario Hockey League. But he is interested in looking at his opportunities with Toronto."

Monday, August 09, 2010

And on the 7th Day God Traded Thomas Kaberle.

The most anticipated and talked about trade in Toronto Maple Leaf history will go down in the next week and I think I speak for most Leaf fans when I say I hope it doesn't take the full 7 calendar days. I don't think I can stand another week of talking or hearing or reading about this.

We live in an age where every single thought that crosses our mind becomes a status update, tweet or comment on a blog. If you want to indulge in just about anything, there is somewhere to do it 24/7 - countless stories, a million opinions - it’s all there for us to consume. In the case of this Kaberle trade it has reached the point where we have read his name so many times it starts to trigger something uncomfortable because we know we’ve reached a new low.

Kaberle. Kaberle. Kaberle. See, makes you feel a bit sick now doesn’t it?

If the folks over at PPP could give us a statistic on just how many “Kaberle” mentions have shown up on their site over the past year, I would wager that the sheer volume might rival "Haiti Earthquake" on the rest of the internet. We’re obsessed with this potential deal, and it shows, a million times over.

Even Mike Ulmer - paid by the Leafs to talk about the Leafs - has reached his end. He has sworn he will not type a single character more about this trade until it either does or does not go down. Eklund too has published two Kaberle-free stories in a row. It would appear that for Leaf fans and writers the universe has a distinct edge and we're stepping back from it in fear of what we’ve become.

When this deal finally goes down, brace yourself for a let down. Nothing short of Toronto getting back Sidney Crosby and Drew Doughty in a package will feel as big as we’ve made this thing to be. No “top-six forward” that Toronto is likely to land will fulfill the prophecy that we have all co-created. No forward will be able to carry the weight of all of this and I warn you fellow Leaf fans that it is perilous to expect otherwise.

This hockey team is a work in progress. There is no rule that says by training camp this is the team we will all live and die with for the season. So much can happen. Injuries, promotions, more trades, buyouts, rival teams falling on hard times or good times. Kaberle, an exceptional player in the league was never able to sway the teams fortunes on his own and neither will the player that replaces him. This deal is only a fraction of the equation, and I hope for all of our sake that once it's done we can go back to seeing it that way.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Ross invited to WJC camp. Cowen in limited role.

Leafs 43rd overall pick from this years draft Brad Ross will audition in Newfoundland for a spot on the Canadian WJC team. Not too bad for a 2nd rounder. Leaf fans hope this is just the beginning for this kid. If Toronto can get a guy to punch above his weight out of the 2nd round, it's a coup.

In other WJC news, Jared Cowen will attend camp but is recovering from mononucleosis so he won't be allowed any contact. A minor bump in the road right? Why would a shutdown d-man need to make body contact?