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Bon Voyage, François!

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It's good to be back doing the FTBs. It's always nice to take a break, but I'd never want to miss out on Leaf action for too long. I've barely unpacked my bag from my vacation to Thailand, and François Beauchemin is already packing his for Anaheim.

Of course, there were plenty of other newsworthy items to run through the Twitter mill yesterday, including John Mitchell being placed on waivers, worry over Jonas Gustavsson's heart, a Chicago - Florida trade (the second trade of the day where a GM makes a deal with his former club), a brawl-ridden shootout in Boston, and the fact that Evgeni Malkin will miss the remainder of the season with knee problems requiring surgery. Oh, and the Sharks and Devils completed a minor trade.

Naturally, despite all this other action, all anyone really wants to write about is the Beauchemin deal. After going through quite a considerable number of reviews of said trade (man, oh man, there were a lot) , the one I found myself agreeing with most was from our friend mf37. Here are just a few tidbits from the article:

  • Lupul may be a top six player on the Leafs but this is more a testament of just how thin the Leafs top six is, than it is an indication of Lupul's so-called talent;
  • I doubt Lupul pushes the 25 goal mark as many have suggested. He's only crested that mark twice in 6.5 seasons and it's rare for an oft-injured 28 year old to suddenly find a scoring touch;
  • The Leafs' single biggest need remains finding a quality centre;
  • The Leafs will need to fill-in the 24 minutes a night Beauchemin often played (could mean more Komisarek);
  • The Leafs get an opportunity to see what they have in Aulie (not a bad thing, although with rookies, come rookie mistakes);
  • The deal crates a long-term issue on D - with Kaberle's departure all but certain (either at the deadline or as a UFA), the Leafs are going to be down two veteran, minute eating d-men;
  • The Leafs get younger by adding another prospect to their system; and
  • By the time the Leafs are actually a competitive club playing meaningful post-season games, Gardiner could be an important part of this club. Lupul will likely be little more than an entry in the Leafs annual media guide.

    Lots and lots of links after the jump, so enjoy!

    Leaf-related (well, mostly just Beauchemin-related) Links:

    Maple Leafs banking on Lupul rebound
    An article from Mirtle. To me, it seems that they're banking much more seriously on this Gardiner kid, but no doubt we're all hoping for the best from Lupul.

    Brian Burke gets a jump on the NHL trade deadline
    "I always try to beat the trade deadline," he says. 

    Beauchemin Difficult To Replace, Aulie To Step Up
    Burke said in his presser that he expects Aulie to see top-4 minutes. It'll be interesting to see how he fares.

    Buyers and Sellers
    Hockey Prospectus with Corey Pronman's take on the trade.

    An article NOT about François Beauchemin
    C'est incroyable! Michael Langlois over at VLM ponders the origins of the "can opener" move.

    Lupul Traded to Leafs for Not Pronger
    Jeffler at Leafs HQ gives us his two cents on the deal.

    Other Stuff Happened!
    Another article from Jeffler reminds us that Beauchemin's departure wasn't the only Leaf-related news to emerge yesterday. JFM was waived, for starters.

    Quack Quack, Mr. Beauchemin
    Karina with her take on the deal.

    A Trip Down Memory Lane
    Toronto Mike looks back on a story written following the signing of Beauchemin. "Clearly, Kaberle has played his last game for the Leafs." Saaad trumpet.

    John F-ing Mitchell Finally F-ed
    Mission Accomplished.

    Time To Dissect The Trade
    Jon S over at Puckin' Eh talks about the deal.

    2/9: Marlies This Week at Maple Leafs Hot Stove
    This was written to the blowout win against the Conneticut Wales, but it's still good to read about what else is up in Marlietown.

    Toronto’s penalty killing unit has been solid through their first 51 games this season, ranking second in the AHL with an 87.1% success rate. The Marlies haven’t allowed a power play goal in eight straight games, killing off 29 straight penalties. They’ve allowed only four power play goals over their past 16 games (64-for-69).

    Phil Kessel has a sad
    More fan fiction from LD.


    Other Hockey Links:

    Balanced Zone Shift Leaders and Cabooses, 2007-08 to 2010-11
    BN develops Balanced Zone Shift (BZS) by subtracting Expected Zone Shift from Actual Zone Shift. Zone Starts are starting to really mean something! Side note: I am shocked, SHOCKED, that Colton Orr does not fare well in this study.

    Evgeni Malkin going under the knife
    Pittsburgh Penguins forward to miss the rest of the season after knee surgery Thursday. Ouch, Kibibble!

    Blackhawks acquire Michael Frolik
    Most of us are already aware of this trade, but here's a link just in case.

    Quebec City, province sideline Ottawa in arena-funding plan
    The municipal QC government has teamed up with the provincial government to meet private investors halfway on the $400M project. The Feds may not be contributing at all, anymore. 

    The Tortoise and the Tortoises
    Scott Reynolds at the Copper & Blue looks at which team is likely to finish last overall this year. Pretty much the only reason I'm linking this is to point out that we're not in this race!

    How hockey player soundbites are interpreted around the league
    From The Active Stick.

    Puck Headlines
    Puck Daddy with notes from around the league.

    Wednesday night's alright for a fight
    Videos from the Habs-Bruins game via Puck Daddy.

    Forsberg expected to play later this week
    More trouble getting a visa. I'm still struggling to understand how this is medically possible. Has anyone checked if cyborgs are even permitted to play?

    Sharks, Devils deal minor leaguers
    Well, OK, it's not big news, but a trade's a trade. 


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