Sunday, April 13, 2014

Now that the collapse is complete, what's next?

I've done a lot of thinking about the Leafs lately, probably more than I really should be doing.  Despite what a lot of people say, I don't think that they are as far off from being a contender than people think.

Of course, I don't get paid the big bucks like Brendan Shanahan or Damien Cox, so my opinion is likely to be way off.  

First up, it's likely that this guy is going to be fired some time this week.

1990-91 OPC #51

I don't think that he's going to be a scapegoat for the team's failure to win down the stretch, because it really is his fault.   The team just cannot play defence.  Part of the blame for that can be placed on the talent that he was provided by the GM (more on that later this week), but the fact of the matter is this.  The coach has to teach.  There never appeared to be any kind of system in place to take care of the defensive zone. When the team loses 12 out of its last 14 games to sink like a stone in the standings, someone has to take the hit. 

This next guy has been the subject of a lot of talk as well.   Bad contract, under performing, etc etc.

2013-14 OPC Retro # 609

There's a couple of reasons why David Clarkson didn't perform well this year.  First, the 10 game suspension at the beginning of the season killed any momentum he may have had coming out of training camp.  Second, get this guy a pair of regular line mates, and let him go.  I think that if he had been on a line with Kadri and Lupul on a regular basis, that they could have performed quite well together.  Clarkson is a guy who likes to go to the front of the net on the power play.   Why didn't he see any power play time this season?  Yes, he had a lot of pressure on him with the big contract, but when you don't have a specific role for the entire season, it makes things tough. 

It'll will be interesting to see who the new coach is, and what he does to better utilize the talent of his players.  The rumor of Peter DeBoer taking over the club seems to be that, just a rumor. 

There also has to be a big shake up on the blue line as well.   The Leafs only have a couple of players that can actually play defence at a decent level, and this must be addressed in order to move forward.

It should be a fun summer in Leafland...

thanks for reading, Robert

1 comment:

  1. I will try and cheer you up. I'll send along a package of some vintage Leafs