Confirmed with Link: TOR signs LD Mikko Lehtonen

Discussion in 'Toronto Maple Leafs' started by Cor, May 4, 2020.

  1. deletethis Registered User

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    He may still be on a late winter sabbatical from social media.
     
  2. Kurtz Registered User

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    Zaitsev was good in his rookie year, he regressed afterwards under Babs after being put into a shut down d role, for which he wasn't equipped.

    Lethtonen has said that he can play the right side, and in fact prefers it, so his competition isn't Morgan/Muzzin/Dermott/Sandin, rather it's Holl and a whole bunch of nothing.
     
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  3. Rude Dog Registered User

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    I didn’t realize they signed Noel long last name from The 67s. Is this something we should be excited about in a few years or long shot at best ? Sounds like he had a great overage year.
     
  4. Mess Global Moderator

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    Lehtonen's production last year came as a LHD in the KHL for his breakout season. I believe he played on the right side in the SEL the year earlier IIRC but his production was down.

    2017-18 - Tappara -- Liiga [Finland] --- 55 games 12 goals 17 assists 29 points (as LD)
    2018-19 - HV71 ------ SHL [Sweden] --- 52 games 5 goals 19 assists 24 points (as RD or weak side)
    2019-20 - Jokerit --- KHL [Russia] ----- 60 games 17 goals 32 assists 49 points (as LD or strong side)

    Leafs right side D is extremely weak, but it will be interesting to see how he is deployed , but transitioning to the NHL is already a giant step, and then forced to do that on his weak side as the competition level increases significantly is not ideal. IMO

    There is a lot less time and space in the NHL then in bigger Euro rinks that are 15' wider. So playing on your weak side while under forchecking pressure will result in more turnovers and mistakes.

    Zaitsev's rookie NHL season for a previously undrafted 26 year old would be considered a "free wallet" success story. If Leafs could get a similar result out of Lehtonen then Leaf Nation would be ecstatic.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2020
  5. Menzinger Kessel4LadyByng

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    I think youre taking his quote a bit too literally. Hes just implying that a lot of folks in the market may be overlooking his potential. Thats all
     
  6. Menzinger Kessel4LadyByng

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    And the thjny with Zaitsev was always more the contract than the player itseld. Hed may have stayed a Leaf if he was signed to say a 2 mil aav over 3 yesr deal intead of that 7 year monstrosity.

    If this recent signibg turns into an above average replacement level 6/5 deal than its a win for the team. Just dont pay him on the next deal like hes a core player
     
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  7. karhukissa Registered User

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    Best player in the Europe alongside Kaprizov, congrats Leafs. He's got all the tools to be a top-4 pairing d-man in the NHL.

    Of course it's a huge leap from KHL to NHL, and only time will tell whether he's going to make it in the big league, but i have high hopes. Very excited to follow him and Leafs in the future.
     
  8. Wafflewhipper Registered User

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    You know all the strength of a good defenseman is mostly smarts to ge where you need to be whenyou need to be there. Taking the right ice,good reads to jump in,good body position,good gap,ability to close quick and at the right time.
    I am not necessarily a fan of the extreme emphasis put on right dman ,left dman. Who ever is the most talented defenseman works for me. As long as we win and play great defense with only one right shot and I’m good with that.
    Really its the quality of a defense not the sidedness of their shot. If Lehtonen can play right side better than any other left or right shot on theteam he should play there.
    Its risky defensemen that’s gambling and getting caught to much where the problems arise.
    We could have seven left shots of high quality defense and if it one of the best in the league it’s nonissue.
    We need a better defense and if Lehtonen can be better than a right shot he can play right side as a left. Who ever is the best plays.
    That said, i want Liljegren to take a position and put it all together in to a nice safely agressive approach this next year. I want him to own it.
     
  9. Mess Global Moderator

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    Muzzin is already 31 years old and never recorded more than 42 points in a season, he is coming off a 6 goal 23 point season in 53 games [= 35 point pace] .. He just signed for 4 years for @ $5.625 mil per taking him to age 35 when completed.

    How do you compare that to a 25 year old Zaitsev in his rookie season coming off a 4 goals 36 point season who now at age 28 has 4 years left at $4.5 mil?

    Muzzin (4 years older) C.H.% [​IMG]: 6.90 vs Zaitsev C.H.% [​IMG]: 6.16 If you didn't like the Zaitsev deal then you really can't like the recent Muzzin resigning $$$.

    if Lehtonen comes in at age 26 and puts up Zaitsev like numbers 4-32-36 points playing the same 20 minutes ATOI it will be considered a great season and I can guarantee you with near 100% certainty you're not getting him signed for $2 mil AAV X 3 years like you suggested Zaitsev deserved..

    Dubas just signed Justin Holl (age 28) with 68 games 2-16-18 points to your 3 year $2 mil AAV. This is seriously the deal Zaitsev should have gotten? I suppose in Lehtonen comes in with a Holl like year we should expect $2 mil X 3 year Holl like contract. However I wouldn't see that as much of a success story as some might.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020
  10. LeafChief Registered User

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    Jeff's self imposed 'time outs' don't last more than 15 hours.
     
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  11. Menzinger Kessel4LadyByng

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    Muzzin is a better defenseman than Zaitsev by just about any metric you can name. Even if you want to focus on points - the majority of Zaitsev's points that season came from secondary assists on the PP - not the case for Muzzin. I would have given Zaitsev a 1 or 2 year bridge to prove hes a top four guy (and in retrospect) would have shown he wasnt worth his 4+ million caphit. Zaitsev is closer to being a #5 than a #2 D man and should be earning closer to Holl than Muzzin (Holl had more points this season than Zaitsev)

    Muzzin is a proven #2/3 guy. I dont see the comparison here at all.

    As for Lehtonen, we cant predict his contract until we see him play a game.

    Edit: clarification
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020
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  12. GBLeaf Registered User

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    Bang on.

    Points do matter. But they're not the way to measure the success of defencemen alone, not even nearly. Especially not in the case of 'defensive defencemen'

    Mess is all stat driven though.
     
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  13. rent free Registered User

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    all stat and narrative driven
     
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  14. stickty111 Registered User

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    It's also because Muzzin was a Dubas addition, so Mess likes the other player who is worse just because he was added by another GM.
     
  15. stickty111 Registered User

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    Yeah this is all wrong but that won't stop you.
     
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  16. LeafChief Registered User

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    This is written diarrhea.
     
  17. IPS Registered User

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    I usually scroll passed his posts but he honestly just did a Zaitsev and Muzzin comparison and tried to paint Zaitsev as a similarly effective defensemen :laugh::laugh::laugh:
     
  18. Kiwi Registered User

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    Shot suppression and play driving are what interest me when I'm looking at a defenseman I'd like the Leafs to aquire

    We've got guys that can put up points, we need guys that can be trusted defensively to pair with them
     
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  19. Kazinski Registered User

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    C'mon Mess!
     
  20. Auston Escobar Registered User

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    Username must be a reference to his posts.
     
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  21. hamzarocks Registered User

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    It's nearly impossible to find a defenseman who can suppress shots and drive play within the leafs system. Barrie was supposed to he an elite play driver who would out chance his defensive gaps but that is not the case this season. Our forwards cheat for offense and our defensive players feel pressure and try to take on plays above their grade at times which hurts us in the defensive zone. We see good defensive reputation players become recognized as poor.

    Getting a guy who can skate, make good clean breakouts by skating and stretch passing, and get good offensive shots and can handle 20+ minutes against top competition(assuming your asking to get a guy to play with Rielly) will cost us a premium asset. I don't think we have the open assets to get them right now.
     
  22. Kiwi Registered User

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    Muzzin does it in our system, you can argue Holl and Dermott both do it to a lesser degree

    Barrie was always a one dimensional offensive defenceman with red flags that even the advanced stats people were leary about, he was never a good fit like Muzzin is

    Not necessarily, we've seen players who were under appreciated within one organization go somewhere else and be the type of players were talking about, we may already have that type of under appreciated talent in Dermott already
     
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  23. hamzarocks Registered User

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    Dermott needs to be given more oppritunity (I.e) a higher role in the lineup to showcase he can go up against top 6 nhl forwards and be the player we are looking for. He shows it in spurts but can also be quite erratic and make boneheaded turnovers due to a lapse of forward support and IQ. He needs to showcase that he deserves to be still talked/hyped as much as he was when he first got here in 2018. People have started seeing flaws that he has when he plays bigger minutes. Now those issues are fixable and he was plagued by bad coaching with Babcock when he first came back from a major injury along with not too much consistency in who his partner was.

    For next year I want dermott to be more confident. Use his strong skating to get out of trouble, be more comfortable making short passes to get out of the zone. Use his strength to box out bigger players and use his defensive positioning to be able to suppress shots when possible. I'm hoping he can have a breakout year next season so we can serve the big RHD need internally. Hoping him and rielly can be our number 1 pairing next season
     
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  24. Dekes For Days Registered User

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    This is because most people don't understand the things that actually drive good defensive results, and many let the isolated play of goaltenders impact their perception to a significant degree. Many here would think Lidstrom sucked defensively.
     
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  25. hamzarocks Registered User

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    I think it's a bit of both. How can a goalies play be totally isolated from the defensive players in front of him? The job of the goalie is to save shots but it falls on the forwards/defense to either limit scoring chances and make things easier for the goalies or to outscore their problems.

    We have had players fall off in performance when they played within the leafs system. We saw how good and calm a player like Holl was looking when he started this season. For the first ~45ish games he was our MIP and really looked like a potential top 4 staple. Once he got his new deal something went off and he started playing more off an offensive oriented game. He stopped/team stopped playing the new system keefe was trying to implement with short breakout passes and forward support. He tried rushing the puck and held on to it too long several games. I don't know if the players here feel pressured to make big/glory plays but way to many times we had simple plays/routine exits being turned into a catashtrophie where second/third chances were being given up.

    Now Andersen is not a player I like and he definately had a down year but the past 3 years he was a top 10 goalie and masked a lot off issues we had. The same issues seemed to surround the team whether it was Babcock as coach of keefe. Andersen masked as best as he could some poor defensive plays made by our top guys in the years past and this season he probably contributed a bit more towards the negative perception on our team being horrid defensively.

    We need more reliability on our backend.

    Rielly is a elite guy and needs a smooth calm partner who can avoid making dumb/panic plays. A holl/hainsey/zaitsev/ceci plug wont work. We either need to find a guy who is underhearald/undervalued to bring as a UFA for cheap or need dermott/lilijgren to step into that role soon. We have 3 cup contending seasons left for sure before potential drama from the media starts following the team regarding 88/34 potential UFA deals. Hoping dubas can find/develop this type of player who can exceed on the eye test and be a strong analytics player as well
     
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