The Toronto Maple Leafs finished up their pre-season yesterday with their.... sub-optimal roster... losing to the Red Wings 5-1. It was not a great performance from a lineup that included guys you would expect need a great showcase ahead of today’s roster decisions.
Now, Babcock has said they will make all the necessary decisions to trim their roster down for the start of the regular season, which means that we will all be arguing and losing our minds over who they choose for their backup goalie, 3RD, and replacement/pressbox winger once Nylander and Hyman return.
Backup goalie — do you go with NHL experience that had great success as the backup last year, but who is 35 and had a career best season when his career before the last two seasons was... meh? Or, do you go with the hot (not that) young kid that just came off of an AHL championship and award for being the best goalie in the league, but is still unproven in any NHL experience?
How much do the Leafs weigh the pre-season performances for each, when after tonight it wound up being kinda the same?
Final winger — oh who are we kidding it’s going to be Leivo, the real question is how much playing time will he actually get if the Leafs have their full expected roster all healthy?
Final defensemen — the Leafs have said they’ll keep 8 defensemen until Nylander returns, so you can expect Ozzie to start the year as the 3RD. After that... you’d expect Carrick to make the team, albeit in the pressbox to start, and then it’s a toss up between a few players with disappointing pre-season performances: Rosen, Borgman, Holl and Marincin.
Let us know what you think the Leafs will do, or what you think they SHOULD do, in the comments!
ONTO THE LINKS!
Curtis McElhinney, Garret Sparks or Calvin Pickard: Who should the Leafs pick as their backup goalie? | by Ian Tulloch
Maple Leafs, Carrick await hard cuts: ‘Success is too fleeting’ | by Luke Fox at Sportsnet
Jesperi Kotkaniemi to start season with Montreal Canadiens | by Sportsnet. There’s no way that this can go wrong.
*Kotkaniemi, a timeline*— Sean Tierney (@ChartingHockey) September 29, 2018
September: Kotkaniemi makes the team
October: Kotkaniemi plays centre
December: Kotkaniemi moves to RW
February: Kotkaniemi has "character issues"
Trade deadline: Kotkaniemi is dealt to NJD (or similar) for Steve Santini (or similar)
#GrittyMania continued to take the world by storm. This time he invaded baseball.
#BreakTheInternet pic.twitter.com/BvLDfgM794— Philadelphia Phillies (@Phillies) September 30, 2018
It has led to... questionable decisions.
That did not take long... #Flyers (📷 stevefawleytattoos) pic.twitter.com/KV51T29tXq— Flyers Nation (@FlyersNation) September 28, 2018