July 18 2016 07:30AM
The Toronto Maple Leafs currently have five restricted free agents who still need contracts before the season starts. Two of them are coming off entry-level contracts and do not have arbitration rights: Josh Leivo and Connor Carrick. The other three have all filed for arbitration: Peter Holland, Martin Marincin, and Frank Corrado. The most interesting of those, to me, is Peter Holland. Holland was brought to Toronto in November 2013 when a slew of injuries left the Leafs without a sufficient number of NHL centres. The trade cost the Leafs 2nd and 7th round draft picks, as well as defensive prospect Jesse Blacker. Holland has played well for the Leafs offensively but struggled to earn ice time, never breaking 15 minutes of TOI any of his three seasons with the team.
With Holland's arbitration date just a week away, I thought it would be interesting to see what comparable players had signed for in recent seasons. But before jumping into that list, let's take a look at what kind of player the Leafs have.
July 17 2016 10:30AM
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July 17 2016 07:00AM
Every day that passes without the Oilers adding an offensive defender to their group makes it feel like this club is done making significant changes to the blueline. This thought scares me. One of the great failings of the Edmonton Oilers a year ago was a definitive lack of offense from the blueline.
July 15 2016 09:00AM
Jesse Puljujarvi may or may not be NHL-ready next season. If he is capable of playing in the majors, he may not score right away. It’s important to say these things now so that he’s not branded a disappointment if he fails to meet some of the sky-high expectations out there.
July 15 2016 09:00AM
The best and worst games played by a Leaf last season were both by Jonathan Bernier. They were played within eight days of each other. On December 29, Bernier let in six goals on 15 shots (and got pulled) against the Islanders in a 6-3 loss. On January 6th, he stopped all 39 shots he faced against the Ducks in a 4-0 Leafs win.
The first game earned a Game Score of -3.6 – one of the worst for any player all season – while the other was worth 3.9. For most of the year he was above water, but it was a roller coaster of highs and lows for Bernier. That one week was the apex.
You’re probably wondering what Game Score is at this point. It’s a stat I stole from basketball that attempts to measure a player’s performance in a single game using every basic stat we hold near and dear to our hearts: goals, assists, shots, blocks, faceoffs, penalties, and 5-on-5 on-ice differentials for Corsi and Goals. You can read more about it here.
What I wanted to do with this post was take a basic look at the Leafs 2015-16 season through the lens of this new stat, as well as look at some historic games played – well, historic in the BehindTheNet era, at least.