Leaf writers all over the Barilkosphere are reflecting back on the first quarter of the season, and how this Leaf team stacks up to last year's squad. There are plenty of bright spots, including the MacArthur-Grabovski-Kulemin line, Schenn's development, Gustavsson's emergence, and the team's ability to clamp down defensively. Of course, there are some other less-exciting things to discuss as well, such as Bozak's complete disappearance, the team's struggles to score, and, as James Mirtle puts it "a Jekyll and Hide" act every game - you never know which team you're going to see.
Personally, I see a team that has marginally improved, and though I'll refrain from making any bold predictions, I expect to see this team finish higher than last year. Of course, we all expected a higher finish than 29th last year.
Some figures from Mirtle's 20-game review:
Season GF/G GA/G SF/G SA/G SV% PP% PK% 2009-10 2.56
More after the jump.
After 20 games: Comparing the Leafs - The Globe and Mail
One quarter of the way through the season, a statistical look at how Toronto measures up to last year's team. Also thrown in are some audio clips from Armdog, Giguere, and Wilson. From James Mirtle.
MacArthur proves himself
all over again - The Globe and Mail
Ignored, cast off at various levels, C.M. keeps rebounding and now leads Leafs in scoring. from James Mirtle.
Kessel Unhappy With Benching
As he should be. Also, Brown should be in the lineup tonight, but Caputi is being recalled as an insurance measure. Giguere is on the mend. From Jonas Siegel at AM640.
'Alexei Kovalev is a disaster' - The Globe and Mail
A hockey roundtable discusses how all the Canadian teams have done so far this year.
A Rebuttal to McGran's Predictions
Two 1st's breaks down exactly why they're bogus.
Early Season Report Cards
Darren K. over at Blue Chip Prospects gives a few high-profile Leafs a review.
Quarterly Review – 1st Quarter
A 20-game review from LeafsHQ.
From Burkie’s Mouth – Part 1
Karina releases her much-anticipated review of Brian Burke quotes to the media. She's joined the writing staff over at LeafsHQ, so stay tuned for more of her work over there.
Marlies Fight Pack
Marlies Fight Pack - 11/24/10 - Wednesday's tilt between the Marlies and Griffins saw 204 penalty minutes, including 14 fighting majors in the third period alone. I realize that a lot of people already discussed and saw this, but I felt obligated to re-post, since this is a can't-miss video.
Oh right, did I mention that all this brawling happened in a morning game for a bunch of kids? Jeffler over at MarliesHQ has a review of the game.
Your Favorite Maple Leafs of All Time: Past and Present
Vintage Leaf Memories wants to hear all about it, so go on over to weigh in.
The Lost Komisarek Video
Puckin' Eh has a montage of Komi highlights. To be honest, a few of these hits look really dirty, but then, I can't complain since it's usually a Senator or Hab on the receiving end.
Kadri and Versteeg Make A Surprise School Visit
Via Leafspace Monika on Twitter. She doesn't say where it was, but check out the photo.
Passing the puck - GlobalTimes
A story by Michael Gold about ice hockey in China. Glove tap to Kukla's Korner for the link.
Kyle Larkin has a top-ten list for your perusal.
Winnable Weekend On Tap for Leafs
Maplestirup tells us why the Leafs stand a good chance of picking up some points over the next couple days.
Social Media: Self-Branding and Growing a Reputation
Over at The Frozen Press, theajmorris explains that blogging is opening up doors for all kinds of independent writers.