Sunday, October 17, 2010

Trade Centre - Burke edition

The premise:
I always wanted to stop and see how trades have affected the Leafs, but never really went into too much detail about it.

For example:
Doug Gilmour was great, and the Leafs traded him for Sullivan and McCauley (I'll say Jason Smith was straight up for Dave Ellett). Smith, Sullivan and McCauley were good Leafs, took them to the third round of the playoffs twice (just as far as Dougy took 'em) and then McCauley was never resigned after multiple concussions, Smith was traded to Edmonton for their 4th round pick in '99 and 2nd round in '00 (Jon Zion and Kris Vernarsky???), and Sullivan was released on waivers after the Leafs decided to sign Dmitri Kristich.

But New Jersey didn't get that much out of Gilmour after the trade, so it worked out in Toronto's favour. Who wins the trade? I'll argue that Toronto did - they made better use out of the players that were involved than New Jersey did.

Therefor, how have Burke's moves favoured the Leafs so far?

So, beginning at Free Agency back in 2009 - Jul. 1 - I've gone over each of his trades and considered which team got the best of it.

By my record, Burke's win ratio in the trade column is: 14 wins, 2 losses and 4 ties. The two losses: Stempniak to Phoenix and Kubina to Atlanta - those players were better than the players Toronto received in exchange.

1. Exelby Trade [Jul. 1, 2009]
To Toronto:
Garnet Exelby and forward Colin Stuart
To Atlanta: Pavel Kubina and Tim Stapleton.

Evaluation: Exelby played part-time for the Leafs, keeping the press box warm while he was sitting out most games. Exelby played 51 games, scored 1 goal and 3 assists for 4 points and 73 PIM. Toronto didn't make the playoffs with him, and he is still looking for work after requesting a trade from Toronto. He didn't hold enough value to be traded.
Colin Stuart never played a game for the Leafs, being spun over to Calgary in a 3-player trade a few weeks later.

Kubina played 76 games with the Trashers, scored 6 goals and 32 assists, 38 points, 66 PIMs and then left the team (after missing the playoffs) to return to Tampa Bay.

Advantage: The Leafs dumped a lot of salary by shipping Kubina away - but he played better for Atlanta than Exelby did for Toronto. Atlanta wins.

2. Primeau Trade [Jul. 27, 2009]

To Toronto: Wayne Primeau and a 2nd round pick in 2011
To Calgary: Anton Stralman, Colin Stuart and a 7th round pick in 2012.

Evaluation: Primeau scored 3 goals, 5 assists and 8 points in only 59 games with 35 PIM for Toronto and wasn't resigned in the new season. The 2nd round pick in 2011 remains a mystery, but if Calgary struggles, it is to Toronto's advantage this season.

Stralman never played a game for Calgary, and was dealt away for a 3rd round pick. Stuart never played a game for Calgary, and was never resigned by the team. The 2012 pick has yet to be made, of course.

Advantage: Toronto, decidedly.

3. Paradis Trade [Dec. 3, 2009]
To Toronto: Philippe Paradis
To Carolina: Jiri Tlusty.

Evaluation: Paradis still has yet to play an NHL game. However, more valuable to the Leafs, he was a part of the Kris Versteeg/ Keith Aulie trade a year and a half later.

Tlusty had a promising start to his career with the Leafs [he was a 1st round pick, 13th overall in 2006), scoring 10 goals in 58 games with the Leafs in 2007-08, but never performed strong enough to crack their roster in the following years, never scoring for the Leafs again over 16 games in the next two seasons. After the trade to Carolina, he scored once in 18 games, with merely 6 points. He has not made the Carolina starting roster this season either.

Advantage: Toronto! We're definitely happy to have Kris Versteeg, and this trade was a small part of that. Carolina wished they could have packaged something together to get Versteeg, I'm sure of it. Suckas!

4. Conditional Pick Trade [Aug. 10, 2009]
To Toronto: Conditional pick in 2011
To Anaheim: Justin Pogge

Toronto was tired of Pogge - he just wasn't cutting it. A superb junior star, Pogge was held to high expectations, and it was believed that the pressure in Toronto was too much for him, so he was shipped away. He only played 7 games for the Leafs, his only career NHL win, with a 4.35 GAA and .844 save percentage on a middling Maple Leafs roster.

While Toronto's new 2011 pick has yet to be decided, Anaheim sent Pogge to Carolina for a piece of Aaron Ward, who has since retired. Ward had only 2 assists in 17 games with Anaheim last season.

1 NHL win and a draft pick vs. 2 assists in 17 games. Advantage, Toronto: for milking all of the value out of Pogge before swapping him for some future considerations.

5. Kessel Trade [Sept. 18, 2009]

To Toronto: Phil Kessel
To Boston: 1st round pick in 2010 and 1st round pick in 2011.

Here's a touchy one, that surely will require more time to evaluate. However, as it stands, we can only really measure the impact of this trade as it currently stands, and I'm happy to do this for now. Here we go:

Toronto wound up trading their second-overall pick (and next year's first round pick) for Kessel, who was injured for the beginning of the season, and continues to not be ranked in even the top 50 NHLers in the league by any NHL analyst. However, Kessel has played 74 games, scored 34 goals, 27 assists and 61 points for the Leafs so far, while Tyler Seguin (2nd overall, 2010) has only 1 goal, 2 points and three games played for Boston.

As it currently stands, Toronto has generated more immediate value out of the transaction, and likely will continue to hold the advantage in the immediate results of this trade for another season or so. Then again, the impact of Seguin and whatever comes to Boston in 2011 should technically combine to give Boston the advantage in the end.

6. Giguere Trade [Jan. 31, 2010]

To Toronto: J.S. Giguere
To Anaheim: Vesa Toskala and Jason Blake

To start off: Blake was hated in Toronto for being so damned expensive, and signing to score 35-40 goals per season, yet never even coming close to that (15 in '08, 25 in '09 and only 10 in '10 ugh!) - while Toskala was just hated for being the worst goalie on one of the NHL's worst teams.

Giguere premiered as a Leaf with back-to-back shutouts! Good start. In 18 games as a Leaf, he has 9 wins, 7 losses, 2 shutouts and 2 overtime losses. Last season his save percentage as a Leaf was .016 better than as a Duck, and his GAA was 2.49 vs. 3.14 with Anaheim. He was immediately improved as a Leaf than a Duck.

Blake has six goals in 31 games with Anaheim, 15 points and is pointless so far this season. Remember, he's wicked expensive on the roster as well. Vesa Toskala never played for the Ducks, and was swapped with Curtis McElhinney in Calgary. McElhinney played 10 games last seasons, with 5 wins, 1 loss and a .917 sv% and 2.50 GAA (pretty good). He's played only 24 minutes this season so far.

Goalie for Goalie - Toronto wins, adding the cap relief and freed up roster spot from Blake, advantage Toronto. Toronto wins twice - and Anaheim is blessed to have acquired a quality back-up for Hiller for Toskala. What the hell is wrong with Calgary? It is in Toronto's advantage for Calgary to struggle in the standings from the Primeau trade in July, 2009. Toronto has Calgary's 2nd round pick in the next draft.

Advantage: Toronto.

7. Phaneuf Trade [Jan. 31, 2010]

To Toronto: Dion Phaneuf, Fredrik Sjostrom, Keith Aulie
To Calgary: Matt Stajan, Niklas Hagman, Jamal Mayers, Ian White.

Okay - a lot is tied up in this trade - but ultimately, it's important that the Leafs finally were able to acquire a player whom they dubbed acceptable for their next captain. That makes this trade pretty worth-while. But who got the best of it?

Phaneuf - he's since been named the captain of the Leafs, who are undefeated since he was named. He has only 2 goals in 30 games played, and 12 points total - not overwhelming, but the Leafs are greatly improved since he joined the franchise. They were 13 - 12 - 1 with 27 points in 26 games. Four more wins and 8 points more and that's a total of 35 points in 31 games. Projected over 82 games, that puts the Leafs at over 92 points. You need about 98 points in the Western Conference to secure a playoff spot, I would imagine. Colorado got in at 95 points last year, Montreal made it with only 88. A pace of 92 points last year would have put the Leafs in sixth seed, 4 points up on the 8th seed.

Calgary on the other hand was 13 - 13 - 1 to finish their season after the trade also with 27 points. So far this season the team is 2 - 2, with four points. Since the trade they are 15 - 15 - 1 with 31 points. This puts them on schedule for an 82 point schedule, which wouldn't get them into the playoffs. Just saying. You'll see later on that the value of the Leafs' pick in the second round which they acquired in the Wayne Primeau trade is improved with Calgary's struggle in the standings. 82 points would put Calgary in the 13th spot in their conference, low on the list.

Moving on: Fredrik Sjostrom has performed as a solid penalty killer for the Leafs, in 23 games he has 2 goals and 5 points. Keith Aulie has been injured since his acquisition and through most of the summer. He has yet to play an NHL game for the Leafs - and he may not for a while, considering their depth at defense. He's performing for the Marlies right now.

Ultimately, the leafs needed more defensive strength and the ability to defend a lead in the third period. Sjostrom and Phaneuf are doing this, so far.

Stajan has 3 goals in 30 games with the Flames so far, including 16 assists and 19 points. Hagman has 7 goals and 13 points in 31 games for the Flames; Jamal Mayers scored a goal and six points with 53 PIM in his 27 games with the Flames before signing with San Jose. Ian White has 4 goals, 12 points in 31 games with the Flames as well.

As a whole, the Flames looked to increase their offense to push themselves into the playoffs, but failed last season. With Hagman under contract, they resigned Stajan to a huge deal ($3.5 mill per four years) and have retained White for $3 million this season. That's a lot of cash for these guys. Put this together, and you've got an 18-goal scorer in Hagman, an 8-goal scorer in Stajan and a 10-goal scorer in White. While Hagman has a $3 million cap hit, too - this means the Flames have invested $9.5 million into a projected 36 goals (from players expected to provide offense). Yikes. Kessel's going to do that job for only $6 million this year, suckas!

In the end: Calgary spends $9.5 million while Toronto spends $7.250 (Phaneuf $6.5 million + Sjostrom at $750,000). The Leafs have an improved record over the Flames, they have secured their needs (defense + leadership + penalty killing) while the Flames have not addressed their needs (not enough offensive production + they've spent $9.5 million on not solving their problem, too). Advantage: Toronto - but the season has yet to be played - I will continue to evaluate this.

8. Peluso Trade [Mar. 3, 2010]
To Toronto: D Chris Peluso
To Pittsburgh: Sixth round draft pick in 2010.

Peluso hasn't played in anything other than the CHA since the trade. Pittsburgh selected D Joe Rogalski and D Reid McNeill in the sixth round, but neither have played in the NHL either - so there's no clear advantage to the Maple Leafs on this trade either ... yet.

9. Seventh-Round Pick Trade [Mar. 4, 2010]
To Toronto: Anaheim's 7th round pick, 2011
To Anaheim: Joey MacDonald

Toronto doesn't know what they've got in Anaheim's 7th round pick this year, but they can rest assured that Anaheim didn't use MacDonald last season, or this season. MacDonald was signed by the Red Wings later, basically providing no value to Anaheim in the long or short run. Scratch your head on this one.

Advantage: Toronto

10. Caputi Trade [Mar. 2, 2010]
To Toronto: Luca Caputi, Martin Skoula
To Pittsburgh: Alexei Ponikarovski

This should be interesting to start, and we'll see how long it takes for this trade to slide into Toronto's favour. Caputi came over to Toronto, playing 19 games to wrap up the season. He only scored 1 goal and six points, acquiring a few minor penalties along the way (10 PIM). Not a big impact ... yet. He is sure to get some more ice time and games played over the next little while, which is exciting. Martin Skoula never dressed as a Maple Leaf and was swapped for a draft pick later on.

Poni Boy didn't have as much fun in Pittsburgh, unfortunately. In the final 16 games of the season, he had only 2 goals and 9 points with 17 PIM (that's hardly better than Caputi was doing) and he was a - 6 on a playoff team, finding himself a healthy scratch in the playoffs - NOT what PIT was looking for in this trade. In 11 games in the playoffs, he only scored 1 goal and 5 points. Too bad, PIT probably won't be trading with TOR for a while after this one left such a bad taste in their mouth.

Advantage: Toronto.

11. Fifth Round Pick Trade [Mar. 4, 2010]
To Toronto: New Jersey's 5th round pick
To New Jersey: Martin Skoula

Skoula played 19 games to end last season with New Jersey, with only 3 assists and 4 PIM. He didn't make much of an impact, but was probably only acquired to provide some depth and protection for a Devils playoff run. Too bad for them the run didn't last nearly as long as they had planned.

Toronto selected twice in the 5th round, so they either picked C Sam Carrick (42 points in 66 games in the OHL last season) or LW Daniel Brodin (5 points in 30 games in Sweden) with New Jersey's selection.

As far as I can tell, Skoula is not with NJ anymore, and may not be on any roster anywhere. I'm not sure. I can't find him anywhere.

Advantage: Leafs

12. Matt Jones Trade [Mar. 4, 2010]
To Toronto: Matt Jones and Phoenix's 4th and 7th round picks for 2010
To Phoenix: Lee Stempniak

Matt Jones doesn't have a lot of stats to his name, which is no surprise. I can't find any record of him on any Maple Leafs roster, but his link remains on their official site.

For their fourth round pick, the Leafs selected D Petter Granberg (9 points in 40 games in Sweden). The 7th round pick was RW Josh Nichols (49 points in 71 games in the WHL).

Stempniak is doing swell in Phoenix, though. He's scored 14 goals in 21 games, 5 assists and 19 points while securing an additional 7 games played and 2 assists in the playoffs last spring. [Lee scored 14 goals as a Leaf, but it took 62 games to get there, believe it or not!]

Advantage: Phoenix!

13. Brown Trade [June 26, 2010]
To Toronto: Mike Brown
To Anaheim: 5th Round pick in 2010

The Leafs must have had a serious surplus of 5th round picks, because we know they selected twice. So they had a surplus, and sent one of them away for Mike Brown in Anaheim. Brown is gooning it up with 12 PIM in 4 games already, while rocking a Parros-like moustache that the entire league is proud of. He already has an assist on the season, and is well on his way to surpassing his total of 7 points (6 goals) with ANA last season.

Anaheim had two 5th round selections in the draft as well. They selected RW Christopher Wagner (83 points in 44 games in the EJHL - where?) and D Tim Heed (37 points in 32 games in Sweden). [ANA's 5th round picks sound a lot better than TOR's]

Advantage: Toronto - for now. We'll see how that 5th round pick turns out.

14. Versteeg Trade [June 30, 2010]

To Toronto: Kris Versteeg and Bill Sweatt
To Chicago: Viktor Stalberg, Chris DiDomenico and Philippe Paradis.

Toronto picked up the sexy Versteeg who's tallied a goal and assist in 4 games as a Leaf so far. His Chicago partner was Bill Sweatt, who never played an NHL game. Basically, Sweatt was a non-factor in the long run.

Chicago picked up Stalberg who has 1 goal in 6 games as a Blackhawk, DiDomenico who has never played in the NHL and Paradis who as also not played in the NHL. So far, 1 point for Stalberg vs. 2 points for Versteeg. Toronto wins!

15. Lashoff Trade [Aug. 27, 2010]
To Toronto: Matt Lashoff
To Tampa Bay: Alex Berry and Sefano Giliati.

Toronto picks up Lashoff, who hasn't played for the Leafs yet, but is going at it for the Marlies right now, while Berry and Giliati hasn't either. This trade was to free some roster space, so there's nothing really to worry about here. Both teams win!

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