Ilya Samsonov was a bright spot, now he’s broken: The November Leafs Power Rankin’s

Ilya Samsonov was a bright spot, now he’s broken: The November Leafs Power Rankin’s

Last month I dusted off a TLN staple of yesteryear, the TLN Player Power Rankin’s. The initial roster was ranked and now three of the players are hurt, and another has been claimed off of waivers. Good times.
Now we’re back for round two now that we’re into the second month of the season. Hot takes are incoming…
1. John Tavares (up from 6th)
Coming into the season thanks to his preseason injury the expectations for Johnny Toronto were significantly tempered. What ended up happening in October and early November was Tavares playing some of his best hockey since his first season in Toronto. The captain has been doing captain things like helping the Leafs snap out of a skid by scoring a hat trick against the Flyers and being the consistent power player they need him to be. So much for the final years of his contract narrative, now the Leafs will need to worry about how much he’ll cost to re-sign.

THIS JOHN TAVARES GOAL WAS UNREAL 🚨 pic.twitter.com/xpbGVvJoLU
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 3, 2022

2. Auston Matthews (down from 1st)
A slow start for Auston was unfortunate but seemed to be a lot more puck luck driven and his actual performance was still decent enough. Matthews has continued to use his size to create his own space on the ice and with five goals in his last five games, whatever busted takes were out there about his demise have been put on hold until the next time he dares go more than three periods without a goal.
3. Ilya Samsonov (up from 15th)
With Samsonov at 15th, I can certainly say I was und …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs sign Samsonov to a one year, $1.8M deal

As initially reported by Arthur Staple of The Athletic, Ilya Samsonov is a Leaf and the Leafs have two NHL goaltenders for the 2022-23 season.

Hearing #Leafs have agreed to terms with G Ilya Samsonov on a 1-year, $1.8 million deal.
Toronto has their guy to play alongside Matt Murray in tandem next season.@DailyFaceoff
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) July 13, 2022

The contract is a bit of a steal for the Leafs and has to make us feel pretty damned good. It’s less than we expected the Leafs to spend, but the idea of Toronto investing in goal on finding out if either one or both of Murray and Samsonov can be their answer in net makes a ton of sense.
Here’s what we know about Samsonov:

SEASON
GP
W
SV%
GAA
SO
SA
SV
QS%
RBS
GA%-
GSAA
ADJGAA
2019-20
26
16
0.913
2.55
1
689
629
0.591
2
96
2.3
2.72
2020-21
19
13
0.902
2.69
2
499
450
0.389
3
107
-3
2.96
2021-22
44
23
0.896
3.02
3
1145
1026
0.333
8
112
-12.5
3.1
CAREER
89
52
0.902
2.81
6
2333
2105
0.418
13
106
-13.6
2.96

By comparison to his team performance, Samsonov’s numbers are pretty much on track. No one has been dragging him down, in fact he seems he made things a little tougher on the Capitals.

Here are the rest of the numbers on Samsonov:

GP
XGA
GSAE
GSAE/60
SVAE
WAR
HDSV%
XHDSV%
HDSVAE
44
106.94
-12.1
-0.307
-0.006
-2.01
0.676
0.705
-0.029
These numbers don’t really inspire a lot of confidence. The confidence in Samsonov comes from draft pedigree, being a top prospect, and knowing that it often that 25-28 year range where goaltenders start coming into their own. Perhaps a change of scenery, a goaltender who played in Russia and knows Russian goaltenders, and a coach that worked under the goaltending coach that developed Sergei Bobrovsky might be what is leading to the Samsonov selection. If the Leafs took Matt Murray for Jon Elkin, it seems like they took Ilya Samsonov because they think he’s the right fit for Curtis Sanford.
From what I said a couple of days ago about Samsonov:
By the numbers, Samsonov doesn’t look like an enticing option, at least for the 2022-23 season, but there is something to be said for what comes beyond that. If he takes a step in the positive direction at all, and one can assume that it’s entirely possible, Samsonov could be the better long term solution while Murray serves as the best short term option. The fact that Samsonov has been able to get into more games than Murray as provides a bit of a safety net for that tandem, and if I’m to set the lowest possible bar, the Capitals managed to be a playoff team with Samsonov in net, surely the Leafs can as well.
None of this is a ringing endorsement for Samsonov, nor has there been too ringing an endorsement for Murray, but both represent attempts at finding something that can move the bar on the Leafs goal situation. And at the very least, perhaps the availability of Samsonov moves the bar on …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation