We are serious contenders!

Discussion in 'Toronto Maple Leafs' started by meefer, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. meefer

    meefer Registered User

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    How to phrase this without p*ssing people off...folks, we're good.

    Much has been made over the past day or two about how we stack up against the best in the league. I agree that we are are not a clear cut favorite to win anything, but I'd strongly argue that we are better than any Leaf team I've seen in the last 5 decades. Today, right now, this is the best Leaf team I've seen since we won the Cup in '67, for which we we were not the favorite. Our challenge is to defeat some other wonderfully good teams that are in our division so that we might advance to the finals. I believe we can beat: Montreal/Boston/Pittsburgh/Washington, leaving Tampa as the ? mark. That's a seriously good team. But, so are we.

    I'll take our C group against any other team.
    I love our RW group, better than any other team.
    Our LW group is wanting, but offers some scoring and steadiness, while not being a big liability as a group.
    With the addition of Muzzin our LD is as solid as anyone's in the league.
    Our RD is improved by the addition of Rielly or Muzzin on the R side and Hainsey being more appropriately slotted.
    Our goaltending, if not Vezina trophy calibre, is, barring injury, very solid.
    We have veterans, middle aged, and youthful talent.
    Our coaching, though 'criticizable' is not without merit, while personally I'd argue it is above league average.
    In short, we're a solid contender to win the Cup.

    I would like to see a bit more 'jam', especially at a F position. Another RD of decent quality would be enjoyed too. However, we are not to be viewed as inferior to most as we stand today. We are a serious contender.

    I'd love to see the city, the fans of the Leafs, rally behind this team as it stands now and lend it the support which will urge it forward. I'd love to see the fans at SBC stand up and cheer this group, a team on the cusp. I'll acknowledge nothing is guaranteed, that a tweak here or there could certainly strengthen the team. But, I'll ask Leaf fans to recognize that we're as close as we've been since Gilmour in '93.

    Some might argue that a fan base's impact on a team's performance means nothing. I disagree. I'll argue all day long that the more support we offer this team the more this team will play to its potential. There are enough Leaf players from the area who will be jacked should the fans jump on the wagon. Marleau, Tavares, Marner, Hyman, Brown, Muzzin, Kadri...a third of the team will be pumped through the roof knowing the everlasting impact that is close at hand...they will drive the others on the team to greater heights.

    We're serious contenders, folks. Let's give this team all the support we can to help them, and us, realize a dream.
     
  2. Gary Nylund

    Gary Nylund Registered User

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    We could beat TB. We could also lose to PIT/WSH/BOS, maybe even MTL (though I like our chances there much better than against the other teams).

    I agree we're serious contenders and on paper, the best team we've had since 67. There are a lot of contenders out there though so it won't be easy. Should be a very interesting spring!
     
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  3. I Believe

    I Believe Registered User

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    Loving the season so far.

    Gonna sit back and enjoy the ride!
     
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  4. SAMCRO44

    SAMCRO44 Registered User Sponsor

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    Not to be a Debbie Downer, but I'd like to see them win a round before declaring them serious contenders
     
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  5. nsleaf

    nsleaf Registered User

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    :nono:No more booing! Cheers only.:clap:
     
  6. Hide N Seek Champion

    Hide N Seek Champion Registered User Sponsor

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    The 92/93 team was one win from the Cup final
     
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  7. I’m in the same boat. Talent is all there, but let’s see them do something with it.
     
  8. Carltons Cup

    Carltons Cup Let's Do This..

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    We have more talent than most teams but in the playoffs that doesn't mean much. It comes down to one word : DESIRE

    The team with the most desire wins.
     
  9. SprDaVE

    SprDaVE Moderator

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    Best team we've had in 2 decades, if not more. Let's hope they can breakthrough in the playoffs.
     
  10. GodEmperor

    GodEmperor Registered User

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    This is the best Leafs team in our modern history.

    The Muzzin thing puts us way over the top of Boston and I feel we can bang with Tbay, not saying we win but a 7 game series v them would be more than enough for me.
     
  11. Volcanologist

    Volcanologist Used Register

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    I don't think Dubas is finished yet. We'll make at least one more move by the deadline.
     
  12. Kamiccolo

    Kamiccolo Hockey is back

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    I don't think there are many people who, if Anderson was on, and our boys got hot, think we cannot realistically win the cup. The issue is, Andersen had some sieve type performances last playoffs even though he stole a few games, and our stars didn't show up. Two first round exits in a row, they still have a lot to prove.

    If they skate around without much effort as they have done since December they will not win a thing. If they play how they played against Tampa the first time and get the goaltending they got the 2nd time, consistently, they can win the cup.

    Time for them to prove it. I don't think the players realize that this very well could be the best team they ever play on. They have a serious chance. It's time to stop with the ego thinking you are too good to have to play the way bottom feeders do, and go to work.
     
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  13. Buds17

    Buds17 Registered User

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    There hasn't been this much on the line in a long time. Can only hope and be optimistic that they continue to take steps forward.
     
  14. Advanced stats

    Advanced stats Registered User

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    Imagine how much doom and gloom there would be if we had lost the Washington game prior to the break?
    ;)

    Seems like you guys can't make up your mind...one week we're contenders, the next we're ****
     
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  15. meefer

    meefer Registered User

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    No team gets to the final without having a hot goalie, without having good luck and without having their best players remain healthy. Winning the Cup is the hardest trophy to win in team sport. Everything has to mesh, but we've got as good a chance as we've seen in decades. However Dubas plays this thing out by the TDL, I'm all in and going to go Ben Crenshaw and just say, "I got a feeling."
     
  16. Suntouchable13

    Suntouchable13 Registered User

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    I really liked the team they went to the playoffs in 2004 with.
     
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  17. meefer

    meefer Registered User

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    Actually, 'Bob', I've never said this team was ****. I've argued for an improvement on D, I've hoped for improvements in what 'Carlton's Cup' calls DESIRE and I've even, on occasion questioned Babcock's decisions. Every team has a weak period during a season, I think we've seen our's and with the addition of Muzzin, and perhaps one more, I like our chances. I'm backing them through and through. Cheers :)
     
  18. Gary Nylund

    Gary Nylund Registered User

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    I took his comment on a comment on Leaf fans in general, not a shot at you. I could be wrong though.

    I like our chances too, I really what Muzzin will hopefully bring including his experience winning in the playoffs. That's the biggest question mark I see - do our kids understand how hard you have to work to win in the playoffs? Hopefully the additions of Tavares and Muzzin will help, we'll see.
     
  19. Advanced stats

    Advanced stats Registered User

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    Haha it was nothing against you man, I'm every bit the optimist you are, and I've been convinced since last year already that we are a contender for the next 8 years

    Gary was right... Definitely a general shot HFleafs emotions
     
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  20. Bomber0104

    Bomber0104 Registered User

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    This group hasn't won one playoff round and people are actually envisioning them winning four in a row now?

    I'm sorry but expectations need to be managed here.
     
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  21. markh100

    markh100 Registered User

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    Me too. Thought that was the team. Still not over Roenick's top corner wrister that knocked them out in the first round.
     
  22. zeke

    zeke The Dube Abides

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    Yep. we are very, very good. Elite.


    Legend:

    qoc = quality of competition measured by opponents' ice time, sorted into letter grades
    Avg p/60 = average of points per 60min and primary points per 60min
    Avg pos% = average of corsi for percentage and expected goals for percentage
    Avg rel = average of corsi for relative to team and expected goals for relative to team
    dsv% = difference between save percentage and expected save percentage


    This Year + Last Year, TOR v TBL

    [​IMG]
     
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  23. Pookie

    Pookie It was a pleasure doing business with you

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    Every year over the last 50, we’ve been contenders at the start of the season ;)

    What’s nice is that we are still contenders as the season goes on.
     
    HamiltonNHL likes this.
  24. Gary Nylund

    Gary Nylund Registered User

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    Those numbers are cool Zeke. I'll be honest though, wins and losses are much more important and I'd be more impressed if weren't so far behind them in the standings.
     
  25. nsleaf

    nsleaf Registered User

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    Serious contender for sure, also want them to be a serial contender.
     

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