With the 15th overall pick the Leafs are proud to select… Braden Schneider?

Welcome to the first of what will be a month long look at potential first round candidates for the Leafs, assuming they hold onto their pick. The TLN writing crew will dissect the first couple of rounds and see who we can land on to help improve the Leafs prospect depth that has dwindled from the glory days of Marner, Nylander, Kapanen, and Matthews, but still isn’t too shabby with players like Robertson, Liljegren, Sandin, and Korshkov all close to being able to make an impact in the NHL. Our first player in the series is one that checks some boxes for Leafs fans, as he’s a right shooting, physical defenseman who already has NHL size.
Today we’ll look at Braden Schneider, a right handed defenseman from the Brandon Wheat Kings.
Schneider’s vitals are part of his selling point for many, as he’s 6’2, 210 lbs, and shoots rights. That checks a lot of boxes for Leafs fans who have worried about the undersized blueline, and the Leafs inability to find anyone who can slot in on the right side. Schneider being one of the older first year eligible players in …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

The Everything Leafs Podcast: Kapanen to PITS

It certainly didn’t take long for the offseason action to begin for the Leafs. Earlier today, a big trade was made.

BREAKING: The Toronto Maple #Leafs have traded Kasperi Kapanen in a packaged deal to the Pittsburgh #Penguins for their 2020 first-round pick and more. Swipe for the full details. pic.twitter.com/1uTm6tOlAF
— TSN (@TSN_Sports) August 25, 2020

In this episode of Everything Leafs, Kevin Papetti and I give our overall thoughts on the trade and break down each of the pieces involved including Evan Rodrigues, Filip Hallander and who the Leafs can draft at the 15th overall spot (if they choose to keep the pick).
Where Can You Listen:
Soundcloud

Spotify

Apple Podcasts:
https://podcasts.apple.com/ca/podcast/the-everything-leafs-podcast/id1484994398
You can find us on twitter at:
Nick DeSouza: @NickDeSouza_
Kevin Papetti: @KPapetti

Stay safe and thanks for listening!

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Author: Nick DeSouza / The Leafs Nation

Here’s an early look at Sahlen Field in Buffalo decked out in Blue Jays colours

After a long, gruelling two-and-a-half-week road trip, the Blue Jays will finally play their home opener on Tuesday.

This home opener, of course, will be different than usual, as it’ll be the first time in 105 years that a Major League game (that wasn’t an exhibition) gets played in Buffalo. You have to go all the way back to 1915 when the Federal League’s Buffalo Blues hosted the Baltimore Terrapins to find Buffalo’s last big-league game.
But, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Canadian government’s reluctance to allow MLB teams to travel in and out of the country, here we are. Buffalo might not have been the Blue Jays’ first choice given the fact Sahlen Field doesn’t have the same bells and whistles of a Major League-calibre facility, but, after making some renovations and upgrades, it’ll be just fine for this strange season.
Over the past couple of weeks, the Blue Jays have upgraded the park’s lighting, made improvements to the field (surely it’s better than the turf!), expanded the clubhouse and dugouts, and have built temporary training facilities and workout areas. …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

It’s time to start hating the Blue Jackets

What a long, strange journey it’s been. We’ve just gone through our longest non lockout related break from hockey and the reality of the Leafs playing tonight is finally hitting, and it’s hitting hard. If the COVID pause wasn’t enough of a shock to the system, the fact that Sheldon Keefe was able to turnaround the trainwreck Leafs he inherited from Mike Babcock to turn them into a playoff team, only to then have them start playing their way out of the playoffs again makes it a surreal feeling that we’re talking about the Leafs as a playoff team in the 2019-20 season. Or at least talking about them as playoff qualifier participants.
Heading into this bizarre playoffs, I have firmly held the belief this situation favours the Leafs. They are offensively driven, they play an aggressive attack style that exploits mistakes, and there should be no shortage of mistakes in these playoffs. They have had a chance to heal, both mentally and physically. They have had a chance to go through a Sheldon Keefe led training camp, and finally we can treat this as his team, completely. We’ …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Getting ready for the BJs

Anyways…
It’s been a long few months of waiting for this moment, and it’s finally here. The Leafs are playing the Blue Jackets, and a lot of digital ink has been slipped over the past couple of months on this matchup. With that in mind, what better way to know our enemy than to take a refresher course on what has been written about the Leafs and the Blue Jackets…
What to expect from…
Over the past month we’ve been breaking down the Leafs potential bubble roster and what to expect from them. You can find those profiles in the depth chart below…

LW
C
RW
LD
RD
G

HYMAN
MATTHEWS
NYLANDER
MUZZIN
HOLL
ANDERSEN

MIKHEYEV
TAVARES
MARNER
RIELLY
CECI
CAMPBELL

ROBERTSON
KERFOOT
KAPANEN
DERMOTT
BARRIE
WOLL

CLIFFORD
ENGVALL
SPEZZA
SANDIN
MARINCIN
KASKISUO

JOHNSSON
GAUTHIER
MALGIN
ROSEN
LILJEGREN

PETAN

If that isn’t enough content for you, here are some of other other articles on the topic of the Leafs and Blue Jackets matchup.
2020 Playoff Preview: How do the Leafs match up against the Blue Jackets?

Breaking Down Columbus’ Goaltending

Scott’s Thoughts: The Leafs scare me …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

What to expect from Jack Campbell this summer

It’s been a long, strange journey from that magical point a few years back when the Leafs seemingly had three capable backup goaltenders in McElhinney, Sparks, and Pickard to the decision to go with Sparks to the realization that Sparks is bad to Michael Hutchinson and his struggles, and finally back around to having a capable backup in Jack Campbell, a one time can’t miss goaltending prospect.
Campbell came in prior to the trade deadline and immediately calmed things down in the crease, at a time when Andersen was struggling, and the Leafs were quickly seeing their playoff aspirations evaporate. He picked up a few wins and won our hearts with his positive attitude. While anointing him a starting goaltender if Andersen struggles in the return to play might be a bit much, Campbell is the least scary Plan B the Leafs have had sitting on the bench in a long time.
By the numbers
All of 2019-20:

Measure
Value
Rank (out of goaltenders who played 1000+ min)

SV%
0.904
44th (out of 58)

GSAA
-4.16
40th

HDSV%
0.761
56th

xGA/60
2.35
10th

Rebounds/60
3.64
35th

data via naturalstattrick.com (All Situations)

Since Campbell joined the Leafs:

Measure
Value
Rank (out of …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

What to expect from Pierre Engvall this summer

Pierre Engvall has travelled a long road to get to the NHL as a 7th round draft pick unearthed by Swedish super scout, Thommie Bergman, in the 2014 draft. Always a long shot, he would spend four more seasons playing in Sweden before joining the Marlies to finish the 2017-2018 season. After a full season and a bit in the AHL, Engvall finally made his Maple Leafs debut in November of 2019 in what would be Mike Babcock’s final game behind the Leafs bench.
And while it may have taken him a while to reach the NHL, it didn’t take him long to make an impact once he arrived. In just his second game, Engvall broke in shorthanded and buried his first NHL goal.

Pierre Engvall’s first NHL goal! pic.twitter.com/lYgUcgCqwV
— The Leafs Nation (@TLNdc) November 22, 2019

It didn’t take long for him to become something of a fan favourite either, injecting some much needed energy into the Leafs bottom six forward group and penalty kill unit with his sneaky speed and puck protection ability.
While Engvall was effective enough to earn a brief stint alongside John Tavares early on, he seemed to fade …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

We’ve crowned our Leafs Madness Champion

It’s been a long journey but we’ve finally ended up exactly where we thought we’d all be, and that is acknowledging Mats Sundin as the Greatest Leaf of All-Time.
At the end of the day, there are a lot of factors that come into naming Mats the champion, for one, no one has been a more dominant Leaf over the past 53 years. There might have been better single seasons, but no one has as full a resume over that time. Now, there are a lot of cups, individual awards, etc. in that previous 50 years. There are players like Bower, Keon, Mahovlich, Conacher, Dye, Primeau, etc. that you might pull out of history books as worthy of consideration, but generally these are players we’ve only heard about, never seen and experienced first hand. Bower was a great ambassador for the organization, but not many of us watched him play. Most of us have seen Sundin, and he’s got that going for him, and being unquestionably the best player over 53 years of an organization is pretty significant.
Looking at the career of Sundin, he checks a lot of boxes outside …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Auston Matthews’ Pursuit of Maple Leafs Immortality

It’s been a long time since a Leaf scored 50 goals. It’s been an even longer time since a Leaf won the Hart Trophy.

This year, Auston Matthews is damn near sure to accomplish the first feat and he could also find himself in the conversation for the other. At this point, we should be talking about where Matthews’ season ranks among the best in Leafs history.
You have to go back to 1993-94 to find the last time a Leaf scored 50 goals. That was when Dave Andreychuk buried 53. It’s happened four other times. Rick Vaive did it three times, once in 1981-82 when he scored 51, again the following year in 1982-83 when he scored 54, which is the franchise’s all-time single-season record, and once more in 1983-84 when he scored 52. Gary Leeman also scored 51 goals in 1989-90.
So, yeah. It’s been a while since a Leafs hit the 50-goal plateau. John Tavares came close last year when he scored 47 in his first season with the club after famously joining the team in free agency, but Matthews, who has 45 goals through 66 games and another month to play, should finally get it …

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Author: Cam Lewis / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Maple Leafs forward Andreas Johnsson out six months

Six months is how long the Toronto Maple Leafs will be without forward Andreas Johnsson after he underwent successful knee surgery earlier today, the club announced.

Johnsson, 25, hurt his right knee against the Dallas Stars on Feb. 13 after a collision with teammate Kasperi Kapanen.
He notched eight goals and 13 assists in 43 games this season.
Johnsson signed a four-year contract extension last June that sees him paid an AAV of $3.4-million, according to Puckpedia.
On Twitter: @zjlaing

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Author: Zach Laing / The Leafs Nation