I have this question many a time, but now at least one “expert” has answered it… What will define success this season for the Buds?
Interesting in that this off-season/preseason of doom and gloom AssClown as we are supposed to call him actually puts a pretty positive spin on the 08-09 campaign:
“I really think there’s lots to hope for, primarily a team that becomes much harder to play against and manages to be competitive through a new commitment to team defence. It might not be pretty, but if Leaf fans see a team that can be in the top 10 in the league in team defence, that’s concrete progress.”
So there you have it. A goal. A goal which is something to strive for. I don’t think it is that unreasonable that we ask that this team be:
-much harder to play against- hell it can’t get worse then it was
-be competitive through new commitment to team defence- I think this is the right approach and we have been sold this bag of goods so we are entitled to expect it.
-Top 10 in team defence- This is not going to be easy, but again is something to shoot for..a realistic goal
“Individually, I think it will be intriguing to watch players like Mikhail Grabovski, Nikolai Kulemin, Mark Bell and Jamal Mayers, who seems like a very classy guy. Fans can also watch Alex Steen, Matt Stajan and Carlo Colaiacovo closely for signs that they can truly be important pieces of the puzzle down the road”
Agreed, 100% it will be intriguing to watch those guys mentioned and I think that it is time for Steen, Stajan and Carlo to put up or shut up.
“Finally, Leaf fans can hope team management sticks to an intelligent game plan of rebuilding. That should include moving some veterans for prospects and draft picks at the February trade deadline. Remember, Philly got Braydon Coburn at the trade deadline in ’07, and now he looks like a future Norris Trophy winner. So if the Fletcher regime is on its toes, there will be real opportunities out there.”
Yes, that is what we are playing for right, the drive for the trade deadline of 2009. Cliff has a long time to convince the holders of NTC’s to move on. Let’s see how many picks and prospects he can get in February. Here is hoping the guys we can move have good enough seasons to bring back good assets. We all have to remember that each player is no more then an asset, right, and the goal is to have the most valuable assets, we need to sell those assets when their value is the most…That is what great teams do…..
The rest of Assclown’s comments are the usual but you can read the expected here.