Reading the newest edition of The Hockey News’ Yearbook, I was surprised to see that they have the Toronto Maple Leafs pegged to finish sixth in the Atlantic Division. They have them finishing only above the Ottawa Senators and Buffalo Sabres.
Excuse me, but even Roberto Luongo isn’t going to make the Florida Panthers that much better and THN has them finishing in fourth.
So this got me thinking, where do you think the Leafs will finish this season?
Most teams in the Atlantic will look somewhat different this season. The Montreal Canadiens lost Thomas Vanek and Brian Gionta to free agency and traded away Josh Gorges and Daniel Briere. New to the Habs are P-A Parenteau, Manny Malholtra and Tom Gilbert.
The Sabres also made a lot of changes. Out are Christian Ehrhoff, Cory Conacher, Ville Leino, Alexander Sulzer and John Scott. Matt Moulson and Cody McCormick return to the Sabres with Sam Reinhart, Gionta, Gorges and Andrej Meszaros are in.
The Tampa Bay Lightning added Brenden Morrow, Brian Boyle, Jason Garrison, Anton Stralman and Evgeni Nabokov. The said goodbye to Teddy Purcell, Nate Thompson, Mike Kostka, B.J. Crombeen, Anders Lindback and Keith Aulie.
The Boston Bruins and Detroit Red Wings are the only teams that did next to nothing in the off-season.
The Leafs, for their part, lost Dave Bolland, Nikolai Kulemin, Carl Gunnarsson, Tim Gleason, Jay McClement and Mason Raymond. They acquired Leo Komarov, Matt Frattin, Mike Santorelli, Petri Kontiola, Daniel Winnik, Stephane Robidas and Roman Polak.
So, on paper, six out of eight teams tried to change to improve their chances in the Atlantic. What will it lead to this season? We’ll have to wait to find out.
Tags: Toronto Maple Leafs