FanPost

The Trouble with Scoring?

Editor's Note: This is an excellent Fanpost with a great breakdown of the issue at hand. For once my halfwit roommate does something good with his life. Enjoy! ps. Suck it Burnside we've got your number.

ESPN's recent 2009-2010 NHL power rankings marks the umpteenth time the Leafs' supposed inability to light the lamp has been mentioned this off-season.  Amazingly, this continues to happen even with our benevolent overlords PPP and Chemmy pointing to statistics which say the Leafs have no scoring problem; as they finished 10th in the league last year.  But then the mitten stringers point to the losses of Nik Antropov, Dominic Moore, and Pavel Kubina and ask the question, "How will the Leafs make up for the goals those guys had?"

Well I'm here to answer that one.  After the jump, I'll use the wonderful powers of "The Internet" to track down some elusive "statistics" that the MSM can never seem to find in order to make my case that the Leafs should have no problem finding the back of the net this season.

Below is a chart showing the current Maple Leafs' roster (which can be found here); and their goals, assists, and points from the 2008-2009 season. (Stats found on hockeydb.com)  Let's have a look shall we?

 

Current TML Roster G A P
Jason Blake   25 38 63
Tyler Bozak   0 0 0
Mikhail Grabovski   20 28 48
Niklas Hagman   22 20 42
Phil Kessel   36 24 60
Nikolai Kulemin   15 16 31
Jamal Mayers   7 9 16
John Mitchell   12 17 29
Colton Orr   1 4 5
Alexei Ponikarovsky   23 38 61
Wayne Primeau   0 4 4
Jay Rosehill   0 0 0
Matt Stajan   14 40 54
Viktor Stalberg   0 0 0
Lee Stempniak   14 30 44
Jiri Tlusty   0 4 4
Rickard Wallin   0 0 0
Francois Beauchemin   4 1 5
Garnet Exelby   0 7 7
Jeff Finger   6 17 23
Carl Gunnarsson   0 0 0
Tomas Kaberle 4 27 31
Michael Komisarek   2 9 11
Luke Schenn   2 12 14
Mike Van Ryn   3 8 11
Ian White   10 16 26
       
Team Totals 220 369 589

Ok, so 220 goals for this current Maple Leafs' roster.  According to NHL.com, that would rank them tied for 21st in the league with Columbus (a playoff team in 08-09).  That's not very good.  But wait, this chart has different colors on it.  What do those mean?

Those players highlighted in blue did not play in the NHL last year, and therefore have no previous stats to their name.  While either rookies, 3rd line defensive forwards, or defensemen; none of them will probably score more than 20 goals, but let's for say that they have the following seasons with Gunnarsson and Rosehill going to the Marlies:

  G A P
Tyler Bozak   9 24 33
Viktor Stalberg   12 17 39
Rickard Wallin   5 12 17

I don't think that's an unreasonable guess at the point production of these players do you?

Then we look at the players in green.  For these players, they either had shortened seasons last year due to injury or split time in the AHL.  Therefore, this year with a full healthy season in the NHL, their numbers should improve.  What would that look like?

  G A P
Niklas Hagman   30 25 55
Wayne Primeau   4 12 16
Jiri Tlusty   8 12 20
Francois Beauchemin   6 15 21
Garnet Exelby   2 10 12
Tomas Kaberle 7 32 39

I think Hagman has a great year, if healthy, and finds his stride on the 1st line turning him into a 30 goal scorer; Tlusty splits times with the Marlies, and the defence chip in a few here or there with Beauchemin getting bonus goals on the PP.

Then there are those in red.  Due to Kessel's injury, loss of at least two months, and without Savard as his setup man, his numbers will come down a bit.  Also, Kulemin looks to be splitting his time with the Marlies this year, resulting in a decrease in scoring for the club. Probably to something like this.

  G A P
Phil Kessel   28 16 44
Nikolai Kulemin   7 9 16

Now these might be a bit low, but I want to be conservative in my estimations.

For the players in white, I see no reason why they should be unable to replicate their numbers from the previous season.  Blake seems to have found new life at 36; and Poni and Grabs are near locks to get 20 goals again this year.  So with the new point totals, what does the Leafs' current roster look like?

2009 TML Roster G A P
Jason Blake   25 38 63
Tyler Bozak   9 24 33
Mikhail Grabovski   20 28 48
Niklas Hagman   30 25 55
Phil Kessel   28 16 44
Nikolai Kulemin   7 9 16
Jamal Mayers   7 9 16
John Mitchell   12 17 29
Colton Orr   1 4 5
Alexei Ponikarovsky   23 38 61
Wayne Primeau   4 12 16
Matt Stajan   14 40 54
Viktor Stalberg   12 17 29
Lee Stempniak   14 30 44
Jiri Tlusty   8 12 20
Rickard Wallin   5 12 17
Francois Beauchemin   6 15 21
Garnet Exelby   2 10 12
Jeff Finger   6 17 23
Tomas Kaberle 7 32 39
Michael Komisarek   2 9 11
Luke Schenn   2 12 14
Mike Van Ryn   3 8 11
Ian White   10 16 26
       
Team Totals 257 450 707

(Note:  Assists are a bit inflated, probably down around 400 in reality.)

(Author Edit:  Note:  SPECULATION!!!!!!!1  Seriously, I thought for like 15 minutes on these numbers and shit.)

So 257 goals is what I ended up with.  That puts the Leafs 13 goals ahead of last season's total of 244 (10th in the league), and into 7th place in the league; just behind Pittsburgh and ahead of San Jose.

Surprising?

It shouldn't be.  Teams like Philadelphia (5th) Washington (3rd), teams that nobody questions the offenses of, are loaded with top tier talent, but see a drastic drop off in goal production from the 3rd and 4th liners.  Toronto, on the other hand, lacks superstar goal scorers but has a more even distribution in goal scoring among its players; much like Detroit and Boston who led the league in scoring last year.

So enough of this nonsense about the nonexistent Maple Leafs offense.  They can find the back of the net with the best of them.  And to answer the question "Where will the goals come from?"  Everyone.

PensionPlanPuppets.com is a fan community that allows members to post their own thoughts and opinions on the Toronto Maple Leafs and hockey in general. These views and thoughts may not be shared by the editor of PensionPlanPuppets.com.

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