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Messages - Chris

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This is likely way more indicative of how good the team really is than the first month was. They are really no better than they were last year...probably a little worse actually. Expectations are just higher now.

Things need to change, but not right away. I hope they can make the RIGHT moves with personnel, and not get stuck in short term thinking.

I was saying to my friend tonight that the Leafs started to slide when they started worrying about keeping pucks out of their net. He made a good point when he said that the core group NEEDS to learn how to play defence because most of them will likely still be with the club when they do get better and start competing for real.

It was probably premature to get as excited about the Leafs start as we did, and it's probably premature to get as frustrated as we are now. We were promised pain 3 years ago. This is it.

Agree with a lot of your post regarding expectations. Disagree with the idea that the slide started when they started worrying about keeping pucks out of their net. I think the slide started when other teams started tightening up especially in the neutral zone. The goals didn't come as easily for the Leafs and the defensive shortcomings were exposed...they were always there but the team could no longer score enough to offset that weakness. They definitely have a lot of work to do especially in the defensive zone.

Otherwise...I stopped watching at 6-2 but up to that point thought Martin was one of the best forwards. Kapanen looks like he belongs. I've always liked Komarov but he doesn't seem to be himself this year.

Guess not.

I guess they need to get down by 3 goals before the urgency kicks in.


Agree with the Babcock comment, this team doesn't look very well coached right now. Earn that contract, coach! The players look like they have no idea what to do in the defensive zone, rely too much on lobs and long passes to exit the zone, aren't making clean zone entries or sustaining much offensive pressure. There's too much offensive talent on this team to be playing like this.

Lots of weak long range shots with no one in front. Definitely the model for success.

Leafs get hemmed into their own zone so easily.

Also, this is the second straight shift where Brown has been out in place of Nylander.

Non-Hockey Chatter / Re: Vegas Tragedy
« on: October 03, 2017, 02:38:57 PM »
I've never understood the gun culture in the U.S.  I'm soon to be 49 years old and I've never held a gun in my life.  I don't think I'm missing anything.
I don't understand it either, and I've been a US citizen for all of my 55 years. I grew up in a suburban area (outside of NYC) and no one had guns. However...more and more, I'm thinking that becoming armed in the US is a good idea. Not because of events like Las Vegas, but because I think there is an increasing chance that civil order is going to break down in my lifetime. Either someone is going to take out the power grid and throw society into chaos, or the radical right wingers are going to attempt to stage a civil war. And they have all the guns.

This recent event has really affected me like no other, even the Sandy Hook school shooting. I think it's a combination of the sheer size and number of dead/wounded, along with the rhetoric I've seen on-line in response. Within hours people were already labeling this a conspiracy (i.e. government sponsored, just like the 9-11 truthers) and attempting to silence any discussion of gun concerns because it was disrespectful to the victims. Yeah, I get it...don't discuss it now, don't discuss it later because guns are not part of the problem. And of course the usual responses comparing guns to knives and forks and how if we restrict guns, we have to restrict those kitchen utensils because they can be used as weapons.

I'm completely frustrated and fed up (and depressed) with this country right now and I don't see any hope of progress on this issue. Never thought I'd be considering moving to another country, but I see it as more likely every day.

Can I move to Canada? I've been a big Leafs fan my whole life...

I haven't watched many games since the break, but the ones I have seen...remind me a lot of the (gasp) Carlyle teams. Lots of time chasing in the defensive zone, relatively short offensive forays. Getting outshot a lot of the time. If Anderson is hot they have a chance, but they seem to be getting outplayed a lot and the results are consistent with that.

JVR and Bozak haven't been impressive recently. Didn't see last night but that whole line was -4 so and I saw a number of comments here about them (Marner in particular).

I hope they can move one or both of JVR/Bozak for some significant defensive help in the offseason.

Main Leafs Hockey Talk / Re: Sparks gets the start
« on: June 13, 2016, 10:11:01 PM »
I'm a U.S. citizen (NY). I've been having the gun debate with some members of another (primarily U.S. member) forum and some of the arguments I've seen against any changes in guns laws are both...laughable and downright scary. For instance, did you know that if we're going to make some (and note I say some, not all) guns illegal, or even place tighter restrictions on their purchase, we have to also make cars illegal because thousands of people are killed by them each year. Oh, and swimming pools too, they are dangerous and people die in them every year. It's absolutely ridiculous the lengths some of these people go to in order to defend their "right" to own any kind of weapon.

I'd love to move to Canada. The only problem, as I get older I get less tolerant of cold weather. NY is already too cold for me...

The contract may be a little excessive in terms of $ and length, but I think he is the kind of player that is good to have around a young hard, appears to set a good example. I guess we'll find out if that impression is accurate, based on how long management chooses to keeps him around.

The young players can all learn how to lie to police better by learning from his example.

Ah, didn't realize he's already been tried and found guilty. Thanks for clearing that up, all knowing one!

The contract may be a little excessive in terms of $ and length, but I think he is the kind of player that is good to have around a young hard, appears to set a good example. I guess we'll find out if that impression is accurate, based on how long management chooses to keeps him around.

Main Leafs Hockey Talk / Re: Kessel traded to Penguins
« on: July 09, 2015, 05:14:22 PM »

I think the fundamental difference fans will continue to have about this trade has to do with whether you believe the Leafs had to move Kessel. That management -- or at least Shanahan -- thought Kessel had to be moved is obvious. But that doesn't mean this return is acceptable any more than Clarkson's contract was acceptable (when management decided they had to have him) or Grabovski's buyout was acceptable (when management decided they had to have the cap space). Once management commits to those premises and once we buy them, the outcomes look reasonable -- it's just math and the market. But we don't need to buy those premises.

So, if you agree with management that Kessel had to be moved (before Pittsburgh signs a winger in the summer 2015 offseason), then the return can probably run from good to acceptable, especially when you factor in whatever benefits you think will accrue from his absence (development, draft position, culture, etc.). If you don't agree that there was an urgency to move Kessel now or even anytime in the near future, then the return is going to be mediocre to unacceptable. had a LOT more information available to them than any of us do. That doesn't necessarily mean they made the best decision. But they know what went on inside the locker room, how fit Kessel was or was not, what kinds of deals other teams were willing to make...all that. All we have is what we see on the ice, and what we read in the papers.

Could it simply be a case of Kessel being able to fetch the greatest return, making him the most logical place to start the rebuild? Perhaps. More likely it's a combination of that and the other factors I speculated on earlier. We'll probably never know the relative importance of these factors.

Main Leafs Hockey Talk / Re: Kessel traded to Penguins
« on: July 09, 2015, 03:18:34 PM »
Actually, it's those of us who are underwhelmed by the return who recognize this fact. We just don't think managing to get an elite goal scorer off your roster for B and C prospects -- but also to air out the room, save the children, and "be consistent in our messaging" -- is that much of an accomplishment.

Who do you think is presenting the Kessel trade as a great accomplishment? At best, there are some people who are excited by the return and recognize why it happened.

Chris there. Steve Simmons. Sports talk. Few here, sure.

You need to work on your reading comprehension. I never said I viewed it as a great accomplishment. I said that all the evidence suggests to me that management wanted to get rid of Kessel, and they accomplished that for an "acceptable" return.

Personally, I thought and hoped he'd fetch more. Not sure whether holding out for something better would have worked.

Main Leafs Hockey Talk / Re: Kessel traded to Penguins
« on: July 09, 2015, 02:03:40 PM »

We can debate the exact reasons Chris' post has troubles - he's wrong, he's intellectually inferior, he's drinking, etc.

See how I can just throw whatever out there and it doesn't have to be even 1% true, but I've directed the reader to think that way because of how it's been written.  There's tons of reasons Kessel could have been dealt that have nothing to do with what you wrote (for example, he didn't fit into a rebuilding team trying to stockpile picks/prospects) but by only listing very negative qualities that may or may not be true, you've directed it to be only about the negative reasons.  It's what guys like Simmons do - hint, dance around these things without outright saying they think so, or without outright providing evidence of it.  But still making the reader think it.

And obviously I don't believe any of the above!  I'm sure you're a great, smart dude.

That's pretty weak stuff right there.

We all saw Kessel's performance the last half of the season. We all read the QUOTES from Horacheck, Shanahan, and others about some players being unwilling to change, about fitness and work ethic. Who do you think those were directed at? Panik? Booth? Holland?

I'm not even talking about the opinion pieces that have been written, I'm talking about direct quotes. I don't get into the "Kessel eats hotdogs and cookies" crap, but I do see him laboring to the bench after every shift like he's been shot.

It doesn't take much to connect the dots.

And yes, I'll grant that (1) Kessel had the greatest potential to upset the "tank" next year if he returned to form, and (2) he would bring the greatest return out of all the players from the core (Phaneuf, Bozak, Lupul, maybe JVR). But all those players are still around. There was supposedly a decent deal on the table for Phaneuf at the deadline, and the Leafs held off. That should also tell you something about how they view each player.

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