Good morning Toronto Maple Leafs fans!
Well, we finally reached the end of the line. The final results were revealed, and the Top 25 is over.
After we look back at our choices for numbers one to five, we’ll have the final reveal for your votes in the Top 25. Will the community go off the deep end and not have Matthews as number one?
Week Five recap
#5 - Alexander Kerfoot
When I think of Kerfoot, I think of the NHL equivalent of Adam Brooks. He’s not a clear standout in terms of skating, shooting, or strength, but still somehow finds a way to be an above average forward. He’s known for being a smart player, and he racks up a fair number of assists by making effective passes all over the ice.
He’d be known as an efficient scorer if this was the NBA, as he doesn’t shoot often, but makes the most of his opportunities. It’s tough to tell if he’s legitimately skilled at tipping pucks in, or if he’s just been lucky. I’m guessing it’s a little bit of both.
yes, he’s a proven 3rd liner, at least as proven as you can be after 150ish games. The fact that he hasn’t broken 45 points despite playing more than insignificant time with legit superstars means that, at 25, he probably is what he is. He may get better, but that window is singificantly smaller than it is for, say, a 18 or 19 year old defender who has broken records in the AHL for scoring (we have 2 of those).
Now, if you value actual NHL playing time more than potential (ceiling V floor yadda yadda yadda) then cool, I dont, at least not to the degree where I would rank him above Sandin and Liljegren (the previously mentioned defenders) .
I like Kerfoot, im very glad he was included in the trade and think he will fit in nicely in a 3rd line plus fill in roll with the Leafs. I just dont think he’s going to have a better career than 5 other sub 25 year olds the Leafs have
#4 - Kasperi Kapanen
Well, this is where the obvious weaknesses come in. Kapanen’s skillset means that he often creates amazing chances with his feet that his hands and brains can’t convert on. That sticks in your mind. While the caricature of Kapanen as nothing more than a leggy blonde is unfair, he’s also not really outsmarting and out-thinking his opponents the way the roadrunner did to Wile E. Coyote. What has to be remembered is that if his hands and brain could keep up with his feet, he wouldn’t be Kasperi Kapanen. He’d be Connor McDavid.
I’LL DISAGREE WITH WHAT I WANT I’M SORRY I THOUGHT THIS WAS AMERICA
#3 - William Nylander
There is no guarantee, even if Nylander spends every second on the ice playing with Auston Matthews, that everything will not only snap back to normal, but will exceed normal, and he’ll score goals like he’s playing in the World Championships again. The hype machine has swung into overdrive on this score, and everyone who doesn’t still hate him for not trying last year is expecting him to make up for it in some form of cosmic justice that just doesn’t exist. It is more likely he hits his own career averages or something like them, than that he has a year like last year. But it isn’t written in the stars.
A pump action M60 has to be the most inefficient light machine gun ever.
#2 - Mitchell Marner
To be clear, that is nobody. Not Crosby or McDavid. Not Kucherov, as good as he is. Nobody. The puck just went in like crazy for Marner last year. That is above and beyond his own playmaking excellence; it was at a level we just can’t expect anyone to sustain. That doesn’t mean he’s not great, but it does mean that 94 points was a bit fortunate. While he helped them do it, he was on the ice while Tavares and Morgan Rielly had career years for goal-scoring, and their own hot shooting helped give Mitch a few extra assists over what we’d expect.
I know an 11 year old girl who thinks Mitch is the cutest Leaf. Now, that’s worth something, ain’t it the truth!
#1 - Auston Matthews
The other thing people nitpick is his new contract, that 5 year $11.634M AAV deal that will surely lead Matthews to leaving as a free agent to play in Arizona if you listen to Brian Burke. It’s too much cap hit and not enough term. Frankly, I don’t see it that way. The percentage of his cap hit when he signed his contract is less than the 5 year contract Evgeni Malkin, signed after his ELC ended. It is only marginally larger than Jack Eichel’s cap hit. It is more than a bunch of very good players that you would expect Matthews to make more than, because Auston Matthews is better than they are.
Who’s Brian Burke ?
It’s not surprising that Matthews was number one for the third year in a row and, barring a miracle of getting another great player like him, he’ll be #1 for four more years.
Final Community Vote
Right people, let’s check out your top five.
#5 - Andreas Johnsson - W - Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL
Highest Rank: 3 (1 vote)
Lowest Rank: 23 (1)
Number of Votes: 393/424
2018 Community vote: #7
Our six is your five, and you keep the top five all Leafs lifers. Its not a controversial pick at all. Shame on you.
#4 - Kasperi Kapanen - RW - Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL
Highest Rank: 3 (24 votes)
Lowest Rank: 24 (1)
Number of Votes: 403/424
2018 Community vote: #6
Our lists line up and the hive mind lives once again! BuzzBuzz.
#3 - William Nylander - W - Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL
Highest Rank: 1 (2 votes)
Lowest Rank: 9 (1)
Number of Votes: 410/424
2018 Community vote: #3
Nylander got a couple first place votes, and 14 people either just picked random players to mess with the results or are still petty about the contract dispute.
#2 - Mitch Marner - W - Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL
Highest Rank: 1 (20 votes)
Lowest Rank: 25 (1)
Number of Votes: 412/424
2018 Community vote: #2
Darren Ferris’ make Marner #1 campaign didn’t do a lot of damage to the list, but it’s good his interns had something to do over their lunch.
#1 - Auston Matthews - C - Toronto Maple Leafs, NHL
Highest Rank: 1 (392 votes)
Lowest Rank: 8 (1)
Number of Votes: 416/424
2018 Community vote: #1
This is where someone will come up with a comment about eliminating the bottom number of votes to get a better average or something but that is a lot of work and I have [counts fingers] four jobs right now.
Leafs fans, I hear by declare the 2019 Top 25 under 25 officially over!