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Bright's Grove, ON • Canada • 27 Years Old • Male
I was fairly close to the output I expected from a few players last year, also with a couple that I was somewhat distant on so I'm looking to improve this time around.

First I'll start with the lineup as it stands today that could conceivably represent Toronto on opening night, then I'll briefly discuss how wide-open the North East is and then move on to individual Maple Leafs projections.

LW / C / RW
Versteeg / Bozak / Kessel
Kulemin / Kadri / Grabovski
Caputi / Mitchell / Armstrong
Orr / Brown / Sjostrom
Mueller
Irwin

LD / RD
Phaneuf / Beauchemin
Komisarek / Kaberle
Gunnarsson / Schenn
Lebda
Finger

G
Giguere
Gustavsson

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Fact of the matter, this isn't a deep team offensively, however, I really feel the North East is up for grabs to any of the 5 teams due to the lack of elite talent separating the teams. In reality, I don't think that the Leafs offense will end up strong enough to bring them the division title, but if the defense and goaltending plays well enough there is the remote possibility that the team pulls it off with minimal goal scoring due to the weaker competition in the division.

Quick note on why I don't think the North East is very strong.

The only team in the division that made substantial roster changes outside the Leafs this off-season was Boston by adding Seguin and Horton. This was done to help fix their dismal offensive efforts for much of last year and without further improvement or at very least having Rask maintain his numbers in goal, Boston could have trouble icing a team that can score enough goals (even with these additions) to make up for a relatively thin defense outside of Chara. Miller played so far above his career averages for Buffalo last year, that there is no reason to think he will continue that form going forward and without those type numbers Buffalo will be battling their hearts out to make a playoff position. Montreal's once promising goaltending depth is now precarious at best and far less deep and competitive as last year. They've also done little to improve their 5 on 5 game which was 26th overall in goals for last year. Ottawa had another glaring sign the franchise is in trouble when yet another superstar was rumoured to want to jump ship this summer. They also lost arguably their top defensive defender and only added Gonchar to compensate and with Leclaire's lackluster numbers and nobody showing signs of being ready to take over full time, the team is looking to be amidst the league leaders in goals against which when combined with their lack of secondary scoring they may be positioned for a lottery pick.

For those factors, under certain circumstances, I can see any team in the Northeast winning the division but if I had to put money on it I'd say Boston takes the division.

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Now for statistical predictions!

Name - GP - G - A - Pts - PIMS
Kessel - 82 - 43 - 30 - 73 - 20
Versteeg - 80 - 23 - 35 - 58 - 35
Bozak - 82 - 15 - 41 - 56 - 22
Kadri - 59 - 10 - 22 - 32 - 52
Grabovski - 82 - 16 - 38 - 54 - 56
Kulemin - 82 - 20 - 25 - 45 - 68
Caputi - 60 - 6 - 15 - 21 - 70
Mitchell - 65 - 7 - 18 - 25 - 20
Armstrong - 82 - 18 - 19 - 37 - 95
Orr - 81 - 3 - 7 - 10 - 245
Brown - 79 - 5 - 3 - 8 - 140
Sjostrom - 82 - 6 - 8 - 14 - 12
Mueller - 15 - 4 - 5 - 9 - 10
Irwin - 12 - 3 - 2 - 5 - 2
Phaneuf - 82 - 17 - 34 - 51 - 105
Beauchemin - 75 - 6 - 19 - 25 - 39
Komisarek - 78 - 3 - 12 - 15 - 135
Kaberle - 75 - 8 - 38 - 46 - 34
Schenn - 82 - 8 - 21 - 28 - 104
Gunnarsson - 65 - 6 - 23 - 29 - 18
Lebda - 20 - 2 - 3 - 5 - 10
Finger - 8 - 0 - 1 - 1 - 15

GP-W-L-OTL-SV%-GAA-SO
Giguere - 49 - 23 - 20 - 3 - .913% - 2.55 - 3
Gustavsson - 37 - 17 - 16 - 3 - .908% - 2.70 - 2


With said individual stats, the team stats would be as follows.

W 40 - L 36 - OTL 6 - PTS 86 - GF 229

Based on last year, 86 points is good enough for 10th in the East.
229 GF would be good for about 13th in the league.

With these projections, the Leafs will at the very least be battling for a playoff position come seasons end and with me being off a little bit (hopefully) on my Win/Loss ratio, the Leafs may be able to squeak out a playoff spot.

As I stated earlier, the Northeast is wide open and if they don't win the division and get 3rd by default (realistically probably wont but not as far off as some may think), then I see them finishing anywhere 7th-10th.

Flame away hb users
Filed Under:   points   leafs projections   wins   players  
August 27, 2010 3:21 AM ET | Delete
I like the Phaneuf prediction he is now underrated after being called overrated for so long. but i think Kadri will have at least 50 points anything less will be very disappointing.
August 27, 2010 3:32 AM ET | Delete
thinking kadri will probably bounce back and forth from the ahl to the nhl for the first part of the season, much the same as bozak last year ... if he plays the full season, i too hope for around 50 points
August 27, 2010 3:33 AM ET | Delete
also you think phaneuf at 50 points is underrated ?
August 27, 2010 3:38 AM ET | Delete
I'd be happily surprised if the end results for next season turned out so well. Not impossible numbers for any player to hit but it'd be a miracle if they all had so many career years together in one season. I like your optimism, nice blog.
August 27, 2010 10:11 AM ET | Delete
So basically, all the below guys need to have the best seasons of their entire career:KesselGrabovskiKuleminschennVersteegConsidering the little done to the top 6 forwards, it's a brave prediction that a team that ranked 25th on offense last year, suddenly moves up to 12th best in the entire NHL.
August 27, 2010 12:08 PM ET | Delete
Also being very optimistic of number of games played on top 6, to think 5 of the top 6 will play 80 games is unrealistic, ask the Oil.
August 27, 2010 12:55 PM ET | Delete
geeze, the flames attack... it isn't like the guy is calling for Grabovski to pot 35 goals... he hasn't assumed random injuries to unlikely candidates... look at any fantasy prediction magazine and they don't assume injuries on players that don't warrant it. injuries are a random occurrence and when they occur the Leafs will settle more realistically in the scoring standings, ok?
August 27, 2010 2:48 PM ET | Delete
asking kessel to score 43 goals with that line up is rich. Dion won't have 50 points either. This team is lacking talent up front and expecting a defense that was underwhelming last year to suddenly improve this year might be a bit much, don't you think?
August 27, 2010 4:24 PM ET | Delete
Leafs vs. Flames for the 2010/2011 worst team crown. Book it Dano.
August 27, 2010 8:33 PM ET | Delete
Holly Rojan! R U kiddin me??? Wouldnt trade flames roster with leafs, no where close, i'll take whatever bet
August 27, 2010 9:58 PM ET | Delete
Kessel was on pace for 35 goals this year. With a full season and stronger supporting cast (improvement from Kulemin, addition of Versteeg) I don't see 40 goals as being unreasonable. The defense looked worse playing 26 games in front of Vesa Toskala last season... every single mistake would end up with the red light flashing... not something a gelling defense corps needs.
August 27, 2010 11:11 PM ET | Delete
right on the money with your last comment a-mar .. none of my predictions are horrendously outlandish ... nothing way over the top .. just some optimistic guesses as to what the rester can attain ... im not calling for the city of toronto to start planning the parade route ...
August 30, 2010 1:16 AM ET | Delete
nice blog... i appreciate your thoughtful predictions. The only thing is Grabo getting 38 assists is a huge stretch. any predictions for MacArthur?
August 30, 2010 11:24 AM ET | Delete
I really don't think 54 points for a full season out of Grabovski is a stretch. This guy had 48 points in his rookie season and 35 in an inconsistent and injury-plagued sophomore year. What I took as an encouraging sign is that he improved in some facets of the game that were severely lacking in his rookie season (ie Faceoffs)... shows me that he's trying to grow and improve even if he is still woefully immature.
September 1, 2010 8:16 AM ET | Delete
lol this bloger must be a habs fan becuse he basicly said that the 4 teams in the north-east suck. But he didnt say anything bad about the habs!
September 1, 2010 8:16 AM ET | Delete
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