Thursday, February 14, 2008

Voyage to the bottom of the standings

Searching for prospects in the Leafs line up...
Fifty nine games into the season and the Leafs have some territory of their own, though it's probably not where they wanted to be in the second week of February.

With their 5-4 loss to the New York Islanders on Thursday night, Toronto claimed undisputed custody of last place in the Eastern Conference, number fifteen with nowhere to go but up.

On the way to where they would like to be and at least the eight playoff spot will be six other teams that won't be willing to surrender their place in the pecking order for the final playoff spot.
With their slide down to the bottom of the standings, the buzzards will pick up the pace as they circle the Air Canada Centre prior to February 26th and the trade deadline. Already there has been a steady crop of scouts and GM's taking in leaf games, looking to see who may be ready to move on to new challenges and more importantly who may be best able to help out a playoff bound team with a few holes to fill.

High on the list of any GM is the status of Mats Sundin, who despite his frequent protestations that he would prefer to stay in Toronto may soon find that he's a very popular target of inquiries. While his loyalty is commendable, it should be pretty clear by now that this Leaf squad isn't going to be making a run in the playoffs, and probably won't even be able to make a run to the playoffs, if the right situation comes along, Sundin would be foolish to let it slip by.

While his team may not have much hockey left in its immediate future, Sundin could still find out that NHL playoff season actually does run past the end of April.

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