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Thursday, March 29, 2012

NBC Sports: Leafs’ new low: fans chant “Let’s go Blue Jays” during rout

If starting their 15th goalie of the post-lockout era wasn’t a strong enough sign that things are bad for the Toronto Maple Leafs, then Thursday’s humorous chant clinched it. During various points in a 7-1 drubbing by the Philadelphia Flyers, Buds fans sarcastically (and at times, quite loudly) chanted “Let’s go Blue Jays.”

While there are times when fans will promote local teams when times are good (usually when a given squad’s success is unusual), it’s often the comical barometer of especially bad times for a franchise.

Boileryard Posted: March 29, 2012 at 10:41 PM | 96 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: blue jays

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   1. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 29, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4092693)
In case anyone was wondering, the Leafs suck.

Back in the old days, this would have led to "Arrrrrrrgooooooos!" chants.

It's good to know that everyone is ready for the Blue Jays season to start.
   2. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 29, 2012 at 11:38 PM (#4092694)
Their starting goalie got injured in warmups, so the backup had to make his first ever start.

Thanks for giving Hartnell-Giroux-Jagr an easy night Toronto! Also, man has the shine come off Brian Burke.
   3. Boileryard Posted: March 29, 2012 at 11:47 PM (#4092696)
Here's the video of it.
   4. Shock Posted: March 29, 2012 at 11:51 PM (#4092698)
The leafs are a national treasure. Only team to not make the playoffs since the lockout. I ####### love it.
   5. SteveF Posted: March 29, 2012 at 11:55 PM (#4092701)
The Leafs played a style of hockey under Wilson that essentially gave them zero chance to win anything ever. You can't try to outscore your opponent every night in a 3-2 league, especially when you're the team consistently giving up 3+.

Fortunately they play in a league where it's pretty easy to turn it around quickly with the right coach. Actually winning something, however, will take several years of drafting good players. Fortunately for them, they actually have draft picks this year (a first and at least 2 second round picks.) It will be interesting to see if Burke is around to see some of those players play in the NHL. Actually, it will be interesting to see if Burke is even around to make those picks.
   6. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:06 AM (#4092705)
The Kessel trade was dumb, but they've had 4 first and second rounders the past 4 years, it's not like they've been waiting around for hours on draft day. They've been getting talent in the pipeline, it's just not good enough talent. That's on Burke. Only three players he's drafted have played in the NHL, and one of them isn't on the team. That's both pretty bad and some bad luck to not have some 4th/5th/6th rounder turn into even a marginal role player. On the flipside, they've also got 3 guys 21 and under that have played for them this year that were other team's first rounders, and no one on the roster is over 30. It's a fairly young team.
   7. puck Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:18 AM (#4092710)
No TFC chant?
   8. Weekly Journalist_ Posted: March 30, 2012 at 07:23 AM (#4092757)
Didn't they lose 8-0 to the Bruins last week too? Sweet jesus, what the hell?
   9. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 08:24 AM (#4092770)
6- They've only had 3 drafts under Burke; to expect the team to be filled with his picks (especially when he traded 2 1sts) already is unreasonable. They do have some late round picks from the previous era (notably Gunnarsson and Kulemin) contributing. As you pointed out, he's done a good job getting young talent in the system in other ways (trades, college FAs), but aside from Gardiner, they have no elite prospects. That will hopefully change with a top-5 or so pick this summer.

Burke's made some great trades, a couple bad ones, has been terrible at UFA signings, and has consistently failed to solve the goaltending. With above-average goaltending, this is a playoff team right now. Colorado, for example, collapsed like this last year and they're right in it this year in a tougher conference.

This is a make-or-break summer for Burke.The shine is definitely off with the fans and the media is turning on him. Most worryingly, for him, a new ownership group takes over this summer. There's a lot of things he needs to get done (goaltending, use the draft pick well, get a #1 C to help Kessel, improve the defence) and they are not easy things to accomplish.

I'd be remiss to point out, for those that don't follow this stuff, that the nation's other iconic franchise, the Habs, fired their GM today and are basically where the Leafs were 3-4 years ago, full of lousy contracts and with few prospects. They do have a #1 G, though, which will help them a lot.
   10. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 08:48 AM (#4092775)
They've only had 3 drafts under Burke; to expect the team to be filled with his picks (especially when he traded 2 1sts) already is unreasonable.


I forgot he took over in the middle of the season in '08, so yeah, 3 drafts. My point wasn't that the team should be stocked with players he's drafted, it's that despite the Kessel trade they've still had high draft picks, the trade didn't clear the cupboard.
   11. formerly dp Posted: March 30, 2012 at 08:50 AM (#4092777)
I know it was just a ST game, but Gose stole 4 bases without a hit yesterday...that's gotta be tough to accomplish. Every now and then those speedy, toolsy CFs pan out. Hopefully this'll be one of those cases.
   12. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 08:52 AM (#4092778)
it's that despite the Kessel trade they've still had high draft picks, the trade didn't clear the cupboard.


They've had one top-ten pick since Burke took over. Hell, they've only had one top-twenty pick in that time.
   13. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:05 AM (#4092784)
They've had one top-ten pick since Burke took over. Hell, they've only had one top-twenty pick in that time.


Semantics, a first rounder is a high draft pick to me. 2nd rounder ain't too shabby either. Yes, top ten picks are better than not-top ten picks, but they're not a requirement for being good. there are teams that have consistently been able to find talent in other ways. The Red Wings haven't had a top ten pick since 1991. The Flyers have had 1 top ten pick that they didn't trade for since 1992. Vancouver has had 2 since the Sedins were drafted, part of that time of course was when Burke was at the helm. The Ducks had one under Burke's tenure.
   14. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:16 AM (#4092787)
Is there a rabid fan base that has had to endure a stretch of incompetence as long as Leafs fans? Orioles, Pirates and Royals fans are all great fans, but I wouldn't say they're rabid. The only comp I can think of is the Buffalo Bills. The Dallas Cowboys have been disappointing for over a decade, but at least they're still making the playoffs. The Leafs haven't even made the playoffs in seven seasons, a darn near impossible task in the NHL.

EDIT: Oh yea, duh, the Chicago Cubs.
   15. Gamingboy Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:27 AM (#4092794)
On the Bills/Leafs comparisons: Amazingly, the Bills last league championship (pre-Super Bowl era AFL title) was only one or so years before the Leafs' last Stanley Cup.
   16. Davo Dozier (Mastroianni) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:33 AM (#4092796)
Hm, hockey's still a thing? I had no idea.
   17. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:35 AM (#4092799)
Hm, hockey's still a thing? I had no idea.


We don't go into threads on things you like that we don't just to crap on them, how about you do the same?
   18. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:47 AM (#4092806)
Saying something "is a thing" is still something people do?
   19. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 30, 2012 at 09:53 AM (#4092810)
On the Bills/Leafs comparisons: Amazingly, the Bills last league championship (pre-Super Bowl era AFL title) was only one or so years before the Leafs' last Stanley Cup.


To be clear, the Leafs' last Stanley Cup was before the NHL's expansion year. And by "expansion year" I mean the year they expanded from 6 teams to 12.
   20. zack Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:02 AM (#4092820)
There are teams I hate much, much more than the Leafs, who are basically irrelevant, but it still fills me with schadenfreude when they fail so spectacularly.

You can't try to outscore your opponent every night in a 3-2 league


I don't understand this, at all. Isn't that how you win? If you mean, you can't try to outscore your opponent when you have no possession and your goaltending sucks, then I agree with that.

And while we're shitting on the Leafs inability to make the playoffs, let's remember that 53% of the league makes the playoffs every year. This isn't baseball.
   21. RJ in TO Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:11 AM (#4092828)
At least this year they're continuing to suck, now that they're eliminated. It's better than all those years where they went on a furious run at the end of the season to ensure that they finished 9th in their conference, resulting in both no playoffs, and a bad first round pick.
   22. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:12 AM (#4092829)
To be clear, the Leafs' last Stanley Cup was before the NHL's expansion year. And by "expansion year" I mean the year they expanded from 6 teams to 12.

The last time the Leafs won the Cup, colour tv was less than a year old in Canada.
No current NHL players were born.
Sgt.Peppers would be released a month later.
Americans had yet to walk on the Moon.
Heck, my mom was 10. I'm 35 now (yes, she was young when she got me).
   23. Greg K Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:14 AM (#4092830)
Is there a rabid fan base that has had to endure a stretch of incompetence as long as Leafs fans?

I don't know if I'd call 1998-2004 incompetence. Sure they had the advantage of a massive payroll, but they won a whole bunch of playoff games in that span, and were perennially in that second tier of contenders. More like a fifty year run of incompetence punctuated by brief periods of cromulence.
   24. Greg K Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:19 AM (#4092832)
Heck, my mom was 10. I'm 35 now (yes, she was young when she got me).

My mom was 20, and I'm now 28. I guess she had me later than usual.
   25. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:22 AM (#4092835)

I don't know if I'd call 1998-2004 incompetence. Sure they had the advantage of a massive payroll, but they won a whole bunch of playoff games in that span, and were perennially in that second tier of contenders. More like a fifty year run of incompetence punctuated by brief periods of cromulence.


Leafs don't have a good record, but there have been some good years in there. It's not like it's been like this every year for 45 straight years. Heck, I grew up during the Ballard years, and I'd say those were worse than what we've got now. But Leafs fans of my age were forged during the Gilmour and later the Sundin years. Four Conference Finals in a 10 year span will do that. Unfortunately, it's been nothing but darkness since...
   26. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:30 AM (#4092843)
But Leafs fans of my age were forged during the Gilmour and later the Sundin years.

Mats Sundin... One of the worst trade in the Nords history. And by a guy who was probably Quebec/Colorado's best GM, Pierre Lacroix.
   27. RJ in TO Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:34 AM (#4092848)
Heck, I grew up during the Ballard years, and I'd say those were worse than what we've got now.


Oh my, yes. Those were terrible years, as you knew that the team was going to suck, and that any player good enough to earn a decent salary was going to be traded. Ballard really seemed to have absolutely no interest in even making it appear that he cared about competing.
   28. Famous Original Joe C Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4092854)
Hm, hockey's still a thing? I had no idea.

Hm, emo's still a thing? I had no idea.
   29. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4092855)
At least this year they're continuing to suck, now that they're eliminated. It's better than all those years where they went on a furious run at the end of the season to ensure that they finished 9th in their conference, resulting in both no playoffs, and a bad first round pick.


I don't begrudge them their late season runs, as I do expect my teams to try to win, but I agree with this. In fact, I'm actually quite surprised at how angry people are about their garbage time play. The media, in particular, has been piling on, I think. When the Leafs won during garbage time to get to 9th place, the media said the games don't matter. We can't use these games to judge anything. And now when they lose when the games matter? They're TERRIBLE! But for most of calendar 2011, they were a good team -- I think something like 100 points in those 80 games; it sucks that it got spread over

I'm also a little concerned just how badly the offense has dried up trying to implement Carlyle's system. I know this is getting a head start on next season, so I'm not terribly concerned, but it seems that his teams in Anaheim required a bunch of high-end forwards and excellent goaltending. Leafs have neither.
   30. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:42 AM (#4092861)
Semantics, a first rounder is a high draft pick to me. 2nd rounder ain't too shabby either. Yes, top ten picks are better than not-top ten picks, but they're not a requirement for being good. there are teams that have consistently been able to find talent in other ways.

No, they're not. But players taken outside the top-five rarely become NHL regulars, let alone impact players, within three years of being drafted. Therefore, your belief that Burke's picks should be contributing on the NHL roster by now is at variance with reality. I think some of Burke's picks will be very good NHL players, and yes, expecting first or second rounders to become contributors is reasonable, but you really do need to wait a while. The players Burke has drafted are still between 18-21 years of age.


I don't understand this, at all. Isn't that how you win? If you mean, you can't try to outscore your opponent when you have no possession and your goaltending sucks, then I agree with that.


That's what it means. The Leafs have a lot of speed and a fair bit of offensive skill, but are a lousy possession team with horrific goaltending. You can't win being both. But hell, I don't think the Red Wings could win with the Leafs goaltending since the lockout.
   31. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:52 AM (#4092876)
The Leafs have a lot of speed and a fair bit of offensive skill, but are a lousy possession team with horrific goaltending.


Beer league is a far cry from the NHL, but when my beer league teams had these characteristics, our only hope was to go run and gun... you simply give up too many goals on nothing chances that your only chance to win or be competitive is to open it up.
   32. zack Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:53 AM (#4092878)
What I don't get is, where did Burke's obsession with truculence over actual hockey ability come from? Is that from the Toronto media? Or when he got Niedermayer and Pronger did he do it for entirely the wrong reasons?

I thought his work as the GM OF AMERICA was really strong as well, building a team rather than a collection of good players.

   33. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:55 AM (#4092879)
I thought his work as the GM OF AMERICA was really strong as well

Don Cherry disagrees.
   34. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 10:59 AM (#4092881)
Beer league is a far cry from the NHL, but when my beer league teams had these characteristics, our only hope was to go run and gun... you simply give up too many goals on nothing chances that your only chance to win or be competitive is to open it up.

SSS and all that, but they certainly did a lot better with that approach under Wilson then they have under Carlyle's more defensive system. Losing a (at the time) top-ten scorer in the league to injury hasn't helped the offence though.

What I don't get is, where did Burke's obsession with truculence over actual hockey ability come from? Is that from the Toronto media?

While Burke brought in players that fit the "truculence" meme at first (Komisarek, Orr, Armstrong) in the last few years he has brought in a ton of players that are high skill but not very physical - Kessel, Lupul, Gardiner, MacArthur, Connolly, Lombardi, Franson, Liles... a good rule of thumb: If Brian's lips are moving, he's BSing you.
   35. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:00 AM (#4092885)
I thought his work as the GM OF AMERICA was really strong as well, building a team rather than a collection of good players.

He did do a good job, but having Ryan Miller really helped. I can't stress this enough - the Leafs need a goalie. With a good, or even avg goalie, they are a comfortable 6-8 seed in the East this year.
   36. Nolan Giesbrecht Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:00 AM (#4092886)
Joaquin: the Wings would seem to be a bad example - they essentially turned a journeyman goalie like Osgood into a HoF candidate.
   37. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4092887)
Therefore, your belief that Burke's picks should be contributing on the NHL roster by now is at variance with reality.


I'm just spoiled by the team I root for having top picks contribute sooner.
   38. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:01 AM (#4092888)
The Leafs haven't even made the playoffs in seven seasons, a darn near impossible task in the NHL.


Is this true? I remember the NYR (98-04) and Calgary Flames (97-03) had both pulled this feat in the last 20 years. Until this year, Florida had been out 10 straight. Columbus missed 7 out of expansion, and 10 of 11. TO be clear, I'm not defending the Leafs here, just saying it's not that uncommon...
   39. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:04 AM (#4092891)
Is this true?


All those examples are pre-lockout. With the salary cap, it's hard to be so bad for so long.
   40. Paul D(uda) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:13 AM (#4092905)

There does seem to be a lot of excitement for the Jays this season. More than I can remember in the past.
   41. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:18 AM (#4092913)
I take your point, but even Chris Osgood is two or three levels above the quality of the goalies the Leafs have run out. Osgood twice put up a SV PCT of .910 with the Blues and Islanders. He had one awful season in between where he put up an .892 between both franchises. This year Leaf goalies are at a .900... since the lockout the team's goalies have put up SV PCTS of .897, .891, .896, .887, .896, .907 (almost entirely due to a hot 35 games by James Reimer, who fell apart ths year), .900.

So that averages out to about .896 goaltending for seven seasons. Or ten points below journeyman backup Ty Conklin... for seven years.
   42. John Northey Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:19 AM (#4092916)
For bad we are now up to 4 years in a row with no team in the playoffs - be it Jays, Leafs or Raptors (counting ML sports). The random odds are extremely low of that happening - about 1 in 1000. How? Lets be generous and say it is 50-50 to make the playoffs in the NBA & NHL. Missing 4 years in a row is .5 x .5 x .5 x .5 = 0.0625 or a 6.25% chance. Square that to get the odds of the Leafs & Raptors not making it for 4 years in easy playoff leagues = 0.39% or about 1 in 256. Random odds (not factoring in how hard the AL East is) for the Jays is 4/5 [not winning division] x 10/11 [odds of not winning the wild card factoring out the 3 teams that won their divisions] = 72.727% now multiple that by itself 4 times = 27.976%. Now multiple that by the odds for the other two teams and you get 0.001% or about 1 in 1000.

Geez does it suck to cheer on "ML" teams in Toronto. Factor in that the NFL team that plays a few games here each year, the Bills, haven't made the playoffs since 1999 and the odds get even worse. Ick.

So come on Blue Jays - the random odds dictate that some team in Toronto has to win sometime, lets have it be you!
   43. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:24 AM (#4092919)
Yeah, Toronto has the worst goaltending in the league. They're 11 points out of the playoffs, with competent goaltending that gap is significantly closed. Perhaps completely closed.
   44. Esmailyn Gonzalez Sr. Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:38 AM (#4092930)
good thing they traded Tuukka Rask to make room for Justin Pogge...
   45. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:43 AM (#4092938)
Only team to not make the playoffs since the lockout. I ####### love it.

While it looks like it will end this year, Florida hadn't made the playoffs since then.

Geez does it suck to cheer on "ML" teams in Toronto. Factor in that the NFL team that plays a few games here each year, the Bills, haven't made the playoffs since 1999 and the odds get even worse. Ick.

Just in my view, I have ticket stubs from the Leafs (2000), Raptors (1999), Blue Jays (2010), TFC (2011), and Bills (2000).

If Team Canada men's hockey team hadn't won those two Olympic gold medals, it would have been a very dry decade+ for me.
   46. zack Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:48 AM (#4092942)
With a good, or even avg goalie, they are a comfortable 6-8 seed in the East this year.


That's true, but still pretty bad. There's a pretty bright line between the good teams and everybody else in the NHL every year, with the top 3-6 teams in each conference a clear step ahead. 6th to 8th when you have good goaltending is saying the team is a 1st round exit at best.
Now for Toronto that would be an achievement, of course, but that is a low bar.
   47. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 30, 2012 at 11:51 AM (#4092945)
Yeah, Toronto has the worst goaltending in the league.

A lot of that blame has to fall on the defencemen as well.

Last night, I turned off the game after Philly scored the first goal because I got tired of watching the defencemen just skate around in the zone, with no idea of how to cover players, block passing lanes, or provide any resistance. I get that they're disheartened, but for ##### sake, put up some sort of effort.

I really wish the Leafs had just straight up sucked for the last couple of years (Edmonton Oilers-style) and racked up some good draft picks. The Oilers have an AMAZING set of young stars, and if I wasn't a brain-dead Leafs fan, they would be the team I'd cheer for.
   48. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:02 PM (#4092954)
I know it was just a ST game, but Gose stole 4 bases without a hit yesterday...that's gotta be tough to accomplish. Every now and then those speedy, toolsy CFs pan out. Hopefully this'll be one of those cases.

Not just that he stole 4 bases without a hit, but he stole 2nd, 3rd, and home in one inning after drawing a walk.
   49. formerly dp Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:11 PM (#4092956)
Not just that he stole 4 bases without a hit, but he stole 2nd, 3rd, and home in one inning after drawing a walk.

The walk is the impressive part, right?

Is he slated for Vegas this year, or another round at AA? Looks like he improved his game across the board last year-- better SB%, walk rate, power. Strikeout rate up a tick. Rasmus better get it going quickly.
   50. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:16 PM (#4092958)
I really wish the Leafs had just straight up sucked for the last couple of years (Edmonton Oilers-style) and racked up some good draft picks. The Oilers have an AMAZING set of young stars, and if I wasn't a brain-dead Leafs fan, they would be the team I'd cheer for.


The Oilers have some nice pieces, but they have worse management than the Leafs. I'll be surprised if they put together a contender in the next few years. And you might not have enjoyed last night, but games like that are how you 'rack up some good draft picks'. Finishing bottom 5 isn't fun, but at least the Leafs have a chance at an elite piece this year, instead of another pointless charge to 9th place.

6th to 8th when you have good goaltending is saying the team is a 1st round exit at best.
Now for Toronto that would be an achievement, of course, but that is a low bar.


Nobody's saying this team is the 1975 Red Army. I was just pointing out how much the goaltending has hampered what is, besides that, an average team. There's plenty of other work to do - a #1 C, improvements on the blue line and in the bottom six, clearing out deadweight - beyond just the goalie.
   51. Greg K Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:18 PM (#4092960)
If Team Canada men's hockey team hadn't won those two Olympic gold medals, it would have been a very dry decade+ for me.

We'll always have that round-robin WBC game where Adam Stern single-handedly beat the US!

Is it sad that that was the most exciting baseball game I've seen in almost 20 years? I dream of one day the Jays topping that.
   52. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:22 PM (#4092963)
I went most of my life (since I was 5, when I became a Tigers fan in 84) without one of my teams winning anything. Since then I've had the 06 pennant, City winning the FA Cup last year, Tigers beating the Yankees last year in the playoffs, and the Olympic golds. Still a lousy return winning-wise from almost 30 years of fandom.
   53. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:48 PM (#4092979)
A lot of that blame has to fall on the defencemen as well.


No doubt the Leafs defensemen aren't getting the job done either (and the forwards, forward play is so over looked in team defense). Gustavsson and Reimer though are the worst goalie combo in the league. Reimer's got potential and he's still young, so at least it's not Tampa Bay hopeless (in retrospect, Tampa Bay's goalies are just as bad).
   54. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: March 30, 2012 at 12:51 PM (#4092984)
To be fair Edmonton has worse management than Toronto. That Tom Gilbert trade made no sense, they still have no defense, and they're coaching is abysmal.

Brian Burke is doing what he did in Vancouver: Lots of talent, but no No.1 Center and Shoddy Goaltending.
   55. John Northey Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4093001)
Interesting how the Leafs went out and signed the GM with experience they wanted and have no playoffs, the Raptors went and signed a guy with a couple of executive of the year awards and have been out of it for years, the Jays promoted a guy few heard of and now look to be the closest to making the playoffs.

Just interesting as one would think the experienced guys who were well thought of would've been the ones to put together an exciting team, not the kid with no GM experience.
   56. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:14 PM (#4093005)
good thing they traded Tuukka Rask to make room for Justin Pogge...


Indeed, it was this move more than any that destroyed the post-lockout Leafs.

There does seem to be a lot of excitement for the Jays this season. More than I can remember in the past.


It helps that they're practically undefeated in the spring! If they sold 2012 Grapefruit League champions t-shirts, I'd buy one.

All those examples are pre-lockout. With the salary cap, it's hard to be so bad for so long.


Is it, though? This'll be Edmonton's 7th straight miss. ATL/WPG sixth in a row. Same with the NYI. Florida's probably going to make this year, but it'll just be their first. Columbus has only made once since the lockout. I'm only responding that it is "near impossible" to miss seven straight seasons in the NHL.
   57. Paul D(uda) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:18 PM (#4093011)
Is the Gose inning online anyhwere?
   58. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:25 PM (#4093016)
Is the Gose inning online anyhwere?

I can't find it anywhere.
One report I read said that he stole home when the catcher threw it back to the pitcher.
   59. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:28 PM (#4093020)
Just in my view, I have ticket stubs from the Leafs (2000), Raptors (1999), Blue Jays (2010), TFC (2011), and Bills (2000).
If Team Canada men's hockey team hadn't won those two Olympic gold medals, it would have been a very dry decade+ for me.

Stop complaining. I lost my baseball team during that decade. That's worst. And my hockey team the decade before (I'm hopefull they're coming back soon, though!)
   60. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:32 PM (#4093022)
This'll be Edmonton's 7th straight miss. ATL/WPG sixth in a row. Same with the NYI.

It'll be Edmonton's 6th, Atlantapeg's 5th, and NYI's 5th, actually.
   61. Shock Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:35 PM (#4093024)
Semantics, a first rounder is a high draft pick to me.


It's not semantics. Drafting in the top 10 and elsewhere is a massive difference. There's a huge drop-off at some point although off the top of my head I can't remember where it is. There is definitely a big difference between drafting fourth and drafting 24th, however.

Trading away all those picks for Kessel was unbelievably stupid at the time and remains unbelievably stupid now. I wasn't a fan of Burke when he was here (Vancouver) and I'm glad the hype is starting to wind down in TO as well.
   62. Boileryard Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:37 PM (#4093026)
Is the Gose inning online anyhwere?

I haven't seen it in any of the highlights from the game. In spring training games they sometimes pack up the cameras before the game is finished, and that might've happened here.
   63. smileyy Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:38 PM (#4093029)
Whoa, Jagr is still playing? Neat.
   64. vortex of dissipation Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:41 PM (#4093034)
Toronto's MLS club hasn't made the playoffs either since their formation in 2007.
   65. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:42 PM (#4093035)
This'll be Edmonton's 7th straight miss. ATL/WPG sixth in a row. Same with the NYI.

It'll be Edmonton's 6th, Atlantapeg's 5th, and NYI's 5th, actually.


My bad... I tacked a year to each of these while counting from hockey-reference.
   66. John Northey Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:54 PM (#4093045)
Funny how hockey's cap was supposed to make things more fair yet you have massive slumps from the Leafs, Edmonton, Atlantapeg, and NYI.

Baseball is similar with the 1994 lost WS which was supposed to make things more 'fair'. Then we got the Yankees winning 4 out of 5 WS, Pittsburgh and KC pretty much sub-500 the whole time since (with one exception for KC), and a team moving for the first time since the early 70's. Not to mention the 2 A-Rod contracts among many other massive deals.
   67. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 01:56 PM (#4093047)
Atlantapeg

What about Phoebec? Does that sound alright? Is Quénix better? (I'm getting ahead of myself here, but since we're talking some hockey in this thread, let me just say the mood in Quebec City has been really good in the past couple of weeks. We want our Nords back).
   68. Shock Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:02 PM (#4093058)
Funny how hockey's cap was supposed to make things more fair yet you have massive slumps from the Leafs, Edmonton, Atlantapeg, and NYI.


I don't know. It's about as "fair" as it could possibly be, thanks to the loser points. Look at the bunching that happens from 7-10, every. single. year. The top 4 teams get into the playoffs and the rest is just a crapshoot.
   69. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4093063)
The top 4 teams get into the playoffs and the rest is just a crapshoot.

Agree. I was wondering what would happened if you gave 3 pts for regular time wins, two points for overtime and shootout wins, one for overtime and shootout losses. I'm too lazy (and busy) to do the math just now. One thing sure is that it would encourage teams to win in the regular time instead of waiting until the time runs up to get a bonus point.
   70. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:08 PM (#4093066)
Trading away all those picks for Kessel was unbelievably stupid at the time and remains unbelievably stupid now.

"Unbelievably stupid" is a stretch. No one expected the Leafs to finish 2nd last. And while they gave up a lot, Phil Kessel is one of the NHL's top scorers and he's just 24. Trading your first round pick for Kessel and bringing back Vesa Toskala to start in net? THAT'S unbelievably stupid.

I hate the loser points. 3 for a regulation win please, or better yet, bring back the tie.
   71. Boileryard Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:09 PM (#4093067)
What about Phoebec? Does that sound alright? Is Quénix better? (I'm getting ahead of myself here, but since we're talking some hockey in this thread, let me just say the mood in Quebec City has been really good in the past couple of weeks. We want our Nords back).

Meanwhile my hometown of Hamilton can only dream. It's kind of depressing that Saskatoon has a better chance of landing an NHL team.
   72. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:10 PM (#4093068)
Is it, though? This'll be Edmonton's 7th straight miss. ATL/WPG sixth in a row. Same with the NYI. Florida's probably going to make this year, but it'll just be their first. Columbus has only made once since the lockout. I'm only responding that it is "near impossible" to miss seven straight seasons in the NHL.


I'll agree that "near impossible" is too much, but it's impressive in a bad way.
   73. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:13 PM (#4093073)
Drafting in the top 10 and elsewhere is a massive difference. There's a huge drop-off at some point


Of course, this is true of every sport that drafts. But my point was that despite the Kessel trade, they still had first round picks. And again, I am spoiled by rooting for a team that doesn't rely on top 10 picks to be consistently good. Too bad for Toronto they can't do that.

Trading away all those picks for Kessel was unbelievably stupid at the time and remains unbelievably stupid now.


No disagreement here.
   74. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4093078)
Meanwhile my hometown of Hamilton can only dream. It's kind of depressing that Saskatoon has a better chance of landing an NHL team.

When I grew up, there was a new rumor every month it seems about the possible relocation of the Nords in Hamilton. So I have no sympathy :) I think however that it'd be fantastic if Hamilton had a club. It would not hurt the Leafs all that much. I would think the Sabres might suffer, though.
   75. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:15 PM (#4093080)
And again, you're completely ignoring the fact that outside top-5 picks, it is ridiculous to expect players taken in the last three drafts to be NHL contributors. Again, these are 18-21 year olds.
   76. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:17 PM (#4093085)
And again, you're completely ignoring the fact that outside top-5 picks, it is ridiculous to expect players taken in the last three drafts to be NHL contributors. Again, these are 18-21 year olds.


I've already addressed this: I'm spoiled. Why are you bringing it up again?

Can't we coalesce over laughing at the Leafs? It's fun to do.
   77. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4093089)
And again, you're completely ignoring the fact that outside top-5 picks, it is ridiculous to expect players taken in the last three drafts to be NHL contributors. Again, these are 18-21 year olds.

It is rare, but it's not ridiculous.
Here's a good example. And another one. I thought Claude Giroux and Marc-Edouard Vlasic were in a similar situation, but they played one more year in the junior after being drafted. So did Simon Gagné.
   78. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:23 PM (#4093090)
Can't we coalesce over laughing at the Leafs? It's fun to do.

Couldn't agree more.
   79. Shock Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4093093)
"Unbelievably stupid" is a stretch. No one expected the Leafs to finish 2nd last. And while they gave up a lot, Phil Kessel is one of the NHL's top scorers and he's just 24.


I don't know off the top of my head what his contract situation is, but in the NHL 24 years old is pretty much free-agent age. It's not like baseball where players are your slaves until they're 30. So yeah, he's pretty young but how long do the Leafs have him for? Will he be with the team next time they're relevant?

But my point was that despite the Kessel trade, they still had first round picks.


Right, but the first round picks they had are indistinguishable from second round picks.
   80. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:31 PM (#4093097)
Here's a good example. And another one.


Sean Couturier, Jeff Skinner, Alex Burmistrov, Cam Fowler, Dmitri Kulikov, Ryan O'Reilly, Josh Bailey and Mikkel Boedker in recent years too.

So yeah, he's pretty young but how long do the Leafs have him for?


2 more years. Signed a 5 year deal 3 years ago.

Right, but the first round picks they had are indistinguishable from second round picks.


Not true. If they were indistinguishable from 2nd rounders, Burke would have dealt them for 4th liners.
   81. Papa Squid Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:35 PM (#4093098)
When it comes to trading away first-rounders, I'd rank the Wendel Clark and Tom Kurvers trades as worse than the Kessel one. The Vesa Toskala pick, perhaps, as well. Kessel has performed exactly as advertised and is still only 24. That's not to say the Leafs won't end up paying for it; I think they likely will. I just don't think thus far it's been the disaster everyone says it is. I kind of view it as a poor man's A-Rod in Texas.
   82. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:38 PM (#4093103)
Sean Couturier, Jeff Skinner, Alex Burmistrov, Cam Fowler, Dmitri Kulikov, Ryan O'Reilly, Josh Bailey and Mikkel Boedker in recent years too.

I thought about them too, but most of them were early first rounders. 7th for Skinner, 8th for Couturier, etc. I was looking for guys drafted in the 20s or early second round who made the NHL the year they were drafted and contributed.

If you have the eye and are patient, you can draft great players in the second round.
   83. Shredder Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4093107)
Here's a good example. And another one.
Here's another. Though that's mostly because at least seven other GMs were dumb.
   84. Jorge Luis Bourjos (Walewander) Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:42 PM (#4093108)
Those examples are about as convincing as me saying "top 5 picks are a waste of time" and rhyming off Patrik Stefan, Alex Daigle, Chad Kilger, Jason Bonsignore, Brian Lawton, etc. etc. Of course you can get players that contribute right away with late firsts... but it shouldn't be the expectation.

And Josh Bailey is a long way from a good hockey player.
   85. APNY Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4093110)
I was looking for guys drafted in the 20s or early second round who made the NHL the year they were drafted and contributed.



Bergeron

Edit: And looking it up now, that 2003 draft was loaded after the top 10-15.
   86. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:44 PM (#4093111)
Meanwhile my hometown of Hamilton can only dream. It's kind of depressing that Saskatoon has a better chance of landing an NHL team.

Too bad that RIM guy wasn't allowed to buy the Predators during the year or two that RIM was a huge company. You could have had a team appear and then disappear already by now.
   87. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:53 PM (#4093122)
The 2003 draft was absolutely stocked. The first round is ridiculous, unless you're a Rangers fan, then it's a different kind of ridiculous.

Those examples are about as convincing as me saying "top 5 picks are a waste of time" and rhyming off Patrik Stefan, Alex Daigle, Chad Kilger, Jason Bonsignore, Brian Lawton, etc. etc. Of course you can get players that contribute right away with late firsts... but it shouldn't be the expectation.

And Josh Bailey is a long way from a good hockey player.


You are arguing points that no one is making. We simply listed players that stepped into the NHL the year they were drafted. No more, no less.
   88. Tim Wallach was my Hero Posted: March 30, 2012 at 02:56 PM (#4093126)
Bergeron

He was one of the examples I gave in #77.
   89. zack Posted: March 30, 2012 at 03:40 PM (#4093182)
Andrew Shaw is a rookie for the Blackhawks playing 15mins a game.

He was drafted in the 5th round...this year. Nobody else drafted outside the top-10 has played significant minutes this year.

No, I don't understand it either.
   90. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 03:49 PM (#4093198)
Matt Read is a 25 year old undrafted rookie signed last year at the end of his college season who currently the leading goal scorer among rookies. Bob McKenzie predicted he'd win the Calder, it seemed ridiculous at the time but not any more. I don't think Read will win it, but he's in the conversation.
   91. Ebessan Posted: March 30, 2012 at 04:51 PM (#4093267)
A lot of that blame has to fall on the defencemen as well.

So, so glad that the Flyers didn't trade for Luke Schenn.
   92. Shock Posted: March 30, 2012 at 04:54 PM (#4093272)
Of course you can get players that contribute right away with late firsts... but it shouldn't be the expectation.


Exactly. Anecdotal evidence is garbage.

Not true. If they were indistinguishable from 2nd rounders, Burke would have dealt them for 4th liners.


As a Canucks fan who remembers Vadim Sharifijanov, I applaud this remark.
   93. Random Transaction Generator Posted: March 30, 2012 at 06:37 PM (#4093381)
Funny how hockey's cap was supposed to make things more fair yet you have massive slumps from the Leafs, Edmonton, Atlantapeg, and NYI.

Caps can't protect against stupid decisions.

As bad as the Leafs are, I'd still rather be a fan of them than be stuck cheering for the Islanders.
It's not often that you fire the worst GM in history (Mike Milbury) (franchise-crippling trades and drafts), hire a competent GM (Neil Smith) and fire him in less than two weeks, and then hire the 2nd worst GM in history (Garth Snow) (franchise-crippling contracts).

   94. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 06:47 PM (#4093389)
Let's not forget Jeff Finger, unless you're a Leafs fan, then I understand. It's possible that the Leafs signed the wrong player.

   95. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: March 30, 2012 at 07:19 PM (#4093403)
the 2nd worst GM in history (Garth Snow)


I don't know much about hockey but that might have been the only time I saw a friend laugh out loud at the ridiculousness of a piece of hockey-related news. Maybe it's just that "Garth Snow" is a silly name, but it seems like it was the equivalent of Matt LeCroy being promoted from head coach of the Hagerstown Suns to general manager of the Nationals.
   96. DA Baracus is a "bloodthirsty fan of Atlanta." Posted: March 30, 2012 at 07:42 PM (#4093410)
it seems like it was the equivalent of Matt LeCroy being promoted from head coach of the Hagerstown Suns to general manager of the Nationals.


That would be an equally baffling promotion. A more analogous one would be something like Jason Michaels going from journeyman backup outfielder on the Astros to General Manager of the Astros. Snow still counted on the Islanders salary cap the first year he was GM!

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