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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Scott Young.  'Scott Young's son, Neil, was down at the Riverboat making a fool of himself again last night.  Thinks he can sing...'

5 hours, 41 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Well, you can't read the future.  Way back when, did you foresee a day when you'd be sharing all your old hockey lore in an internet forum?  ;-)

5 hours, 44 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Imagine if they'd played in the same era for the same team.

5 hours, 47 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Xxxxxnew I seem to remember that Clarke fell to 15th because people were worried about his being a diabetic.  When he retired it was pointed out that he'd never loafed a single second in his entire career.  (Wouldn't have been much of a fit with the current group.)

5 hours, 49 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Just checked and Brit Selby was our last Calder winner.  That made it four in nine years, but no Leaf has won since.

P.S.  Ron Ellis might have won in 66-67... except for the wee detail that Bobby Orr entered the league that year.

5 hours, 54 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@Xxxxxnew Douglas and Mahovlich were both Calder winners.  Have we had any since?

5 hours, 59 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@Xxxxxnew The 'spares' were guys like Arbour and Hillman.

6 hours, 3 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew The good old days in every way.  Unlike the current group, guys like Mahovlich, Pulford and Keon didn't bobble passes.  Armstrong could have stick-handed his way with ease through our entire 2015 roster.

6 hours, 4 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Yeah... when you saw him live, in the context of the whole ice, you realized how good his positional play was.  His outlet passes were crisp... you could hear them smack into the forwards' sticks all the way up in the greys.

6 hours, 9 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Mattmark @Xxxxxnew Stanley didn't look like anything on TV.  You had to go to MLG (it was affordable in those days) to realize how good he was.

6 hours, 13 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@mr_hanie @Xxxxxnew He was my favourite player.  The donut bit was a joke at first.

6 hours, 15 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@WesternDP The less Phaneuf, the better.

6 hours, 16 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@ProfessorRance @Mattmark We're nowhere near that right now.  More like ninth or tenth today.

6 hours, 20 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@FrycersGhost 'Best available' applies when you can get a McDavid, Stamkos or Tavares.  When you're drafting in the 9-12 range you might as well go for the position you need to fill.

6 hours, 22 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@ProfessorRance @Mattmark Realistically... taking into account our (un)luck.

6 hours, 25 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@Theo Thought maybe you were a precocious five year old, in which case you might have had a fighting chance.

6 hours, 26 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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Right now it looks like Strome, Marner and Zacha would all be out of reach in the draft.  Presuming Leafs do the sensible thing and go for a centre, does anyone have any preference between Rantanan, Merkley and Barzal, all of whom (with any luck) could be available when we pick?

6 hours, 28 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@ProfessorRance @Mattmark @traNsplantEdneWfie What was he last time we played NJ--about minus 4?

7 hours, 31 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@traNsplantEdneWfie The one plus tonight--not having to watch Ph9.

7 hours, 33 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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Our lowly possession stats are merely the objective record of our woeful puck-handling skills.  I mean, just look at them.  They're fighting the puck all the time... they bobble everything!  Nothing's crisp--ever!

7 hours, 36 minutes ago on GDT: Game #49, New Jersey Devils vs. Toronto Maple Leafs (7:30 p.m., SN)

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@Top Jimmy When I first started investing back in the 1980s the most widely-held Canadian stock was boring old Bell Canada, which was considered an investment for little old ladies.  Turns out that kind of conservative investment was a good idea for a wide range of sensible reasons, and the boomers paid for their houses with money they inherited from the little old ladies.

2 days, 17 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy I wonder if anyone here holds MLSE...

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy There are still stocks worth holding... Canadian banks, for example, and Canadian mining, including gold mining (this is the way to invest in commodities).

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy I don't have a lot in the way of cash to protect.  But I fully expect that OMERS is invested in Switzerland... they've got investments everywhere else.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy As I said, it looks like the Swiss are no longer interested in functioning as that kind of refuge.  'Solve your own problems' is what they've essentially told currency traders.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy Something will get us, sooner or later.  Might as well enjoy yourself on the way down.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy I have elite taste ( ;-) ) ... just not elite amounts of money.  But I've got an OMERS pension for life, and OMERS is pretty diversified.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy Well, I also have some historic Canadian art and many prized first editions of books.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Bruffins @Mattmark @Top Jimmy We're all interconnected, for better or worse.  ;-)

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy What our high school teachers neglected to tell us is that even if you're smart and work hard to get ahead of the game, you can't hold yourself aloof from society.  When the stupid kids in your class grow up they'll still be stupid, and they're the majority.  Their numbers give them the power to drag you down, and in the end you'll wind up paying for their mistakes.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@peterbleafs @Top Jimmy Hey, I buy the stuff, so I'm helping you out!

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy There's no sure investment when everything goes bust.  But most of my wealth is in my house and cottage, and over the past fifty years southern Ontario real estate has been just about the safest investment there is.

2 days, 18 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Top Jimmy You may have noticed that the Swiss are no longer interested in bailing the rest of the world out.

2 days, 19 hours ago on Monday Mashup: Perennial All Star

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@Burtonboy @Mattmark Obviously.  But you can't develop a sow's ear into a silk purse.  Drafting talent capable of being developed is the essential prerequisite.

3 days, 19 hours ago on Saturday Mashup: All Star Weekend

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Ryan Dixon's article (link above) should be required reading.  Even if you are lucky enough to snag a lottery pick, there's simply no way around the necessity of drafting well in the later rounds.  Long-term, out-scouting and out-drafting your opponents is the most reliable way to stay ahead of them.

3 days, 19 hours ago on Saturday Mashup: All Star Weekend

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Frightening to think what Phil could do skating alongside Toews, with Keith and Seabrook feeding them the puck.  Watch for cutthroat Yankee trader Nonis to send him there (or to some other western Cup hopeful) for a 3rd and a 4th.

[Chief Nono of the Manhattan Indians addresses his tribe for the last time: "And get a load of this coloured bead, guys, ain't it a beaut?"]

5 days, 2 hours ago on Phil Kessel has an eventful night at the All Star Draft

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark Trevor Smith was never drafted, so at least he's not one of our draft mistakes.  But the fact that we haven't drafted better than him and need to rely on this sort of free agent signing to fill a roster spot suggests there's room for improvement.  My point is that we could easily upgrade our scouting capabilities; there's no cap preventing us.  Out-drafting other teams is the surest route, sooner or later, to ending up with better personnel, and it's within the rules.  Do it consistently enough over the years and other teams will be approaching us to make trades, instead of us hoping against hope to raid their resources without their noticing. 

6 days, 11 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark I can see that from a personnel point of view you've thought things through, as always; and if you could pull it off, great.  Having seen what's come of this kind of speculation before, though, I'm not inclined to modify my opinion that expecting five or six GMs to fall in line with your plans isn't mere fantasizing.

Since you visualize only three picks coming back from the wheeling and dealing, there's still no way around the need to make our own picks count if we're to end up with anyone capable of benefiting from the 'support' you've assembled.


6 days, 11 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark Three years down the road the support group we already have in place (Kadri, JVR, etc.) will be in that age range.  So let them do the struggling (two posts ago you didn't seem quite as happy with that idea)... we don't have to trade to acquire them.

In the meantime, let's deploy what assets we have to look ten years down the road, and try to become more like the 80s and 90s Wings than the 80s and 90s Leafs, draft-wise.  There is no other route to long-term success.


6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark I'm sorry, but now you seem to be contradicting yourself.  Getting rid of Lupul, Franson, Bozak, Gardiner and Phaneuf strips the team of precisely that veteran support you claim prospects need.  How can you pretend the youngsters you think we could acquire in this way (no cinch, in my opinion) aren't being left to dangle in the breeze in precisely the same way you claim our own draftees would be?

If the youngsters you visualize us getting back are already good enough not to need such support, they're not going to be handed over to us--sorry.  In any event, I don't see how any of this amounts to an argument for failing to benefit in every way we can from the draft.  It's the only way we can get ahead of other teams, whose GMs are naturally just as concerned to get full value from any trading they engage in as we are.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark What are you suggesting the alternative is?  Swap one young player for another?  That's a zero-sum game.  Talk a GM into accepting someone like Lupul for a young hotshot?  How?

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark I think we have the kind of support strata you're talking about right now in Bernier, Kadri, JVR, Gardiner, Rielly, Holland, Percy, etc.  Anyone we deal should be older than these guys, so the only thing we're arguing about is the return.  If you can get a 22-24 year-old bona fide roster player, by all means snag him.  Otherwise accept picks.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark Yeah, so would I if it were possible to find GMs willing to trade away (for less than ruinous cost) players in the 22-24 age range that everyone can see are building blocks.  There's no way you can build an entire team by relying on the rest of the league's consistent bad judgment.  It's a fantasy.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark I don't quite understand the tack you're taking here.  'Cherry picking' is one of your favourite dismissive phrases... are you purporting to represent this kind of anecdotal evidence as a general argument against placing emphasis on the draft?

Just what kind of current 'support' are you suggesting Leafs have in place for prospects right now?  If we have to make a choice, should we trade in order to assemble that kind of support as an alternative to drafting prospects that might subsequently need it?  That sounds incoherent.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Cameron19 @Mattmark Bolland and Seabrook were both Hawk draftees.  Don't know about the others.

Ah!  Keith was drafted 54th by the Hawks... which tends to reinforce the wisdom of placing great emphasis on the draft rather than challenging it.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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Even Nick Kypreos sees there's no point trading players, then bringing in a management team that's had zero input into those personnel decisions and asking it to implement its own vision.  If he can figure this out, anybody should be able to.

6 days, 12 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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@Xxxxxnew Everyone can't deal with Philly all the time.

6 days, 13 hours ago on Leafs Notebook – January 22

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