A trade happened last night; you may have heard about it. The Buffalo Sabres are pretty clearly in full tanking mode and the New York Islanders are going for all the marbles this season. In Leafs news, they’re gearing up for a trip out west to Alberta this week, and they’ll be without the services of Tyler Bozak for at least 7-10 days. On the bright side, Mark Fraser is expected to make his debut soon, Joffrey Lupul should be back from injury and Nikolai Kulemin’s return shouldn’t be very far away. Let’s get to the links:
The only way I see this working out for the Islanders is if Vanek helps the team go deep in the playoffs and re-signs in the offseason. I’m not convinced he’s that much better than Moulson. From Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy.
On the other hand, it will be exciting to see what John Tavares and Vanek can do together. From Eric Bordin of Eyes On Isles.
Who will be the next shoe to drop in Buffalo? Caitlin Campbell of Sabre Noise gives her two cents on the deal.
Phil Kessel has had some problems getting things going offensively in a few games and I think having a skilled, creative guy like Kadri centering him can really help. The Bozak injury will allow us to get an extended look. From James Mirtle of The Globe and Mail.
Most of the Leafs’ top six are pretty clearly above-average shooters, but should we expect them to regress soon? J.P. Nikota of Pension Plan Puppets takes a look.
Some pretty candid comments from Matt Duchene here on his struggles with confidence earlier in his career. From Adrian Dater of The Denver Post.