Tonight we begin one of the most anticipated Toronto Maple Leafs seasons of all time. Normally this would be a huge load of hyperbole but with John Tavares partnering with Mitch Marner on the Leafs top line and Auston Matthews and William Nylander....texting each other?
We here at PPP Kitten Ranching, Basement Renovations, and Bedsheet Fabrication, GmbH have sat down, put on our best thinking caps and made our bold predictions for the upcoming NHL season. No, we weren't total homers about things.
Where will the Maple Leafs end up in the Atlantic, East or NHL? We’re all picking in about the same place, except for Brigstew who’s all in this season.
|Name||Leafs finish in Division||Leafs finish in conference||Leafs finish overall|
We all see a tight Atlantic Division and the top of the East is there for the Leafs. League wise we’re expecting a top 10 finish.
|Name||# of wins||Goals For||Goals Against|
|Annie||53||All of them||All of them -1|
50+ wins this year, almost 300 goals makes for a good looking team. The goals against are pretty high, so we’re not super confidant in the defense as it is on paper.
|Name||Who gets traded?|
|seldo||Leivo, Sparks, Johnsson, Hyman|
|katya||Carrick and Leivo|
|Arvind||Future draft picks|
|Brigstew||Brown, Nielsen and a 2nd|
|Hardev||Sparks, Leivo, 2019 picks|
|Species||Pickard, Gauthier, Borgman, Leivo|
|Annie||Leivo, future picks|
These predictions were made before the big trade with the Dallas Stars, so I have to give Katya the credit on saying Connor Carrick would get traded. Most of us don’t see Josh Leivo lasting too much longer in Toronto either. I went off the board and threw in Andreas Johnsson and Zach Hyman. If the Leafs want to make a big deal, roster players will have to go.
|Name||Best (realistic) outcome for the Leafs||Worst case scenario|
|seldo||Conference Final||Miss the playoffs|
|katya||Conference Final||Miss the playoffs by one game|
|Arvind||Winning the Cup||Miss the playoffs|
|Kevin||Winning the Cup in Vegas||Injuries, miss playoffs|
|Fulemin||Parade down Yonge St.||Global warming makes Earth uninhabitable|
|Brigstew||Cup Champions||Injuries, miss playoffs|
|Hardev||Champions. OF THE WORLD||lose wild card to Buffalo|
|Species||Parade down Bay St.||Miss the playoffs by one point determined in the April 1 game against the Islanders and losing because Matt Martin gets a hat trick|
|nafio||Cup Champions||Miss the playoffs|
|Annie||Winning the damn Cup||Narrowly miss the playoffs, everyone blames Jake Gardiner|
At a minimum we have a conference final appearance, otherwise it’s Stanley Cup time. We see missing the playoffs as the worst possible thing to happen to the Leafs this year, aside from Fulemin who reminds us of the destruction we are doing to ourselves.
Always there for a good time, that Fulemin.
What we want as hockey fans
|Name||What you want as a fan|
|seldo||BRING ME THE CUP|
|Arvind||Better breakouts, outshooting teams, and hopefully a playoff series win|
|Kevin||Playoff series win vs. Boston|
|Brigstew||Curb stomp Boston in first round and win the Cup|
|Hardev||Beat Tampa and Boston|
|Species||Locker room shower access|
|nafio||Many goals, much scoring|
|Annie||Conquering victory, Auston Matthews wearing ridiculous clothes|
We all want different things as fans. I want a cup. I want to watch the Maple Leafs win the Stanley Cup while sitting on my couch with my kids. I want to raise that Leafs flag for all eternity and call Google to come by and take a new street view picture.
Katya wants fun and Species...well, I did ask I guess.
Now, the lesser teams.
|Name||Who wins the EC?||Who wins the WC?||Who wins the cup?|
|katya||Pittsburgh||St. Louis||St. Louis|
|Fulemin||Tampa Bay||Winnipeg||Tampa Bay|
|nafio||Toronto||San Jose||San Jose|
|Annie||Tampa Bay||San Jose||San Jose|
Everyone who picked the Jets* to win the Cup are dead to me. Hell, everyone who didn’t pick Toronto is dead too.
|Name||Who finishes last?|
As much as I’d love Ottawa to lose then win the lottery, I just have to see HOCKEYTOWN finish last for nothing more than pettiness. Plus if Ottawa doesn’t finish last but wins the lottery, it’s funnier.
I’m a Leafs homer through and through so I want to see Tavares, Marner, and Frederik Andersen to take home some hardware. As it should be Connor McDavid gets a lot of picks for awards, but Auston Matthews gets the majority of Rocket Richard votes.
|Name||Adams||Best GM||First coach fired?|
|Arvind||Jim Montgomery||Kevin Cheveldayoff||Joel Quenneville|
|Fulemin||Paul Maurice||Kyle Dubas||Housley|
|Hardev||NYR's guy||Mr. Wilson||McLellan|
|nafio||Jim Montgomery||Ron Hextall||Boucher|
|Annie||Paul Maurice||Kyle Dubas||Boucher|
I have some feelings that Marc Bergevin’s choices will come back to haunt him and he’ll make a panic move and fire Claude Julien and make Patrick Roy head coach. Arvind thinks that the Blackhawks will move on from Quenneville even though it’s Bowman who put them in their current funk.
Those are our picks for this season. Share your predictions below to get the greatest prize of them all: Being right about sports.