Reading the Tea Leafs: Ian White

Following on the success of two other dormant series Chemmy and I have decided that in order to fill the gap in NHL news that we'll take a look at each of the current Leafs, possible Leafs on the Marlies, and prospects. We'll recap their performance last year, what we can expect from them, and how they can win our hearts (hint: signing the contract was a good first step...unless your name is Bryan McCabe). We have no idea how long of a series this will end up being or how consistent it will be but with two of us expect it to only be half as half-assed and twice as timely.

Ian White is so useless that this is the best clip I could find of him on YouTube. I hate him so much his name might as well be Bryan McCabe.

Contract Status (according to NHL Numbers)
$850K salary, $850K cap hit, RFA July 1, 2010

Age (as of October 1, 2008)
24 June 4, 1984

NHL Seasons

Run of the Mill Biographical Information

2007-2008 Stats and Team Ranking

(Scoring rates via Behind The Net)

Counting Stats Total Category 5-on-5 5-on-4 4-on-5
Games Played 81 TOI/60 15.62 1.37 1.19
Goals 5 Pts/60 0.95 0.54 0.00
Assists 16 GFON/60 2.70 3.24 0.00
Points 21 GAON/60 2.89 1.08 6.25

Marital Status
The puck bunnies have failed us. No idea who he is dating although he seems pretty pleased with himself most of the time so maybe he carries a mirror around.

Former Leaf he'd have to play like in order to be christened a deity
Any Leaf that actually looked like they belonged in the NHL or didn't panic and throw the puck away at the first sign of impending contact. Oh, or someone that could make a freaking backhanded clearance.

Biggest Question Marks
Does he even make the squad? Aside from being young, White does not exactly fare well against the rest of the depth chart. Kubina, Kaberle, and Finger have the top three spots on lockdown. A healthy Carlo (I know, I know) moves White into the third pairing but there waits Anton Stralman who almost certainly will make the team, Staffan Kronwall who is better than him, Josef Boumedienne who, while old has to be better than him, and Luke Schenn who will have every chance to make the big club. Enjoy the Ricoh buddy!

2007-2008 Summary
Did you know that White had a better scoring rate than Tomas Kaberle at even strength? Did you know that White averaged the fifth most minutes among defencemen 5-on-5? Me neither. Frankly, as someone that cannot feel any sort of contentment until Ian White is no longer besmirching the blue and white those two facts terrify me.

In a perfect world, White would have sat all of last season so that Jay Harrison (so long!), Staffan Kronwall, or Anton Stralman would have received a much better chance to showcase their talent. Instead, we were treated to Bryan McCabe Mk II - Miniature Edition. We were treated to seeing an undersized defenceman unable to use his speed, unwilling to physically engage opponents, and completely one-sided. If the puck wasn't on his forehand then he couldn't handle it.

The most painful part? While every other defenceman on the Leafs has been injured White just keeps on ticking. There was no relief from his presence on the blueline.

Projected 2008-2009 role/team
If I was in Cliff Fletcher's shoes White's Leafs' career would be over just as soon as I could find someone to trade me a prospect/late round draft pick for him. Ron Wilson did some great work shepherding young defencemen into the NHL so it is conceivable that he would want to try to keep White around to see what advancements he can make this season. Not to mention that he's already spent three seasons with the big club and two of his main competitors have a history of missing big chunks of time.

Being on the third pairing is the most likely outcome, as much as I hate it, for the upcoming season unless Kronwall or Schenn really blows the team away. Dammit.
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