LFR7 – Game 46 – Moti and Vation – Tor 2, Wsh 3


Taking a breath from losing, what are the Leafs trying to do with David Clarkson?



Post Game

Clarkson 2011-12

Clarkson 2012-13 

Goal 1
Goal 2
Goal 3
Goal 4: (About 1:40 into the pack)
Goal 5: (empty-netter)
Goal 6
Goal 7: (same game as 6)
Goal 8
Goal 9: (same game as 8)
Goal 10
Goal 11: (ends month-long drought) 
Goal 12: (exactly 2 minutes into the highlight pack)
Goal 13
Goal 14: (2:05 into the highlight pack)
Goal 15: (only 10 seconds it. Not a great video but it shows the goal)

  • Poluza

    Last year Clarkson scored 10 goals in 10 games, which was a continuation of his great year before. So that means he scored 5 goals in 38 games the rest of the year. Isn’t that scoring rate much closer to his career norm? As far as I can tell watching him this year, he is a third line guy who went on a hot streak for 1 year and 10 games.

    I don’t know Steve, I mean it can’t hurt to try him on the second line (I mean they can’t lose twice in a game) but really that line was pretty bad when they did try it earlier, albeit for only a short time. At this point they might be better to throw darts blindfolded at the wall and hit names.

    Something has to be done and fairly soon or this season is a goner.

  • Poluza

    So you know this but what is
    – Clarkson’s historic SH% vs current rate
    – What is regression and how many games has he played as leafs?
    – What is Clarkson’s usage (QOC/zone starts)?

    Now think it through. Clarkson is on a third line checking line with Mclemment (and ideally with Bolland) to hem the opposition in their own zone and tire them out. The will be followed up with a line change to kadri or kessel line to strike the tire opposition for goal.

    Caryle doesn’t care how many goals Clarkson or the third line scores. And Carlyle doesn’t want to run three scoring lines (with Holland as a 3C) because not one of those line can cycle or grind consistently. He is trying to make it as easy as possible for Kessel and Kadri to score.

    Sure I’d like to see a better distribution of puck retrievers and scorers on the second and third line but this is Carlyle’s strategy.

  • Poluza

    To be honest i say throw in the Marlies, could someone tell Ashton to stop fighting and adopt the Komarov role because he is tailor made to fill that gap with the right guidance. Personally i dont see any point in Nonis making a trade sure playoffs would be sweet but whats the point in using assets to bring in say Girardi when there not going to win the cup? I think unfortunately we have a few more years to suffer until this teams becomes a power house but once the likes of Percy,Finn and Rielly start to mature together with Gardiner thats when were set to roll. There is light at the end of the tunnel its just a bit further away than we thought.

  • Poluza

    Except for the toughest teams (like Boston) how about

    JVR Bozak Kessel

    Lupul Kadri Raymond

    Kulemin Holland Clarkson

    D’Amigo McClement Ashton

    Holland had two more goals today. The Ice Cap announcers were calling him the most talented guy on the ice

  • STAN

    Simple solution – just make Clarkson available. Apparently he was the most coveted free agent last summer, so 29 teams would (allegedly) be salivating at the chance to add him to their Cup runs. Get back a couple of picks and move on.

  • Jeremy Ian

    Steve: A+

    As an exiled Leaf fan in NJ, I watched a lot of Clarkson and Elias or Parise combinations. Esp Elias. Very effective. So, thanks for vid combinations. What happened to the original plan to put him on the wing with Kadri and Lupul for a strong second line threat? Was it the suspension?

    The trouble, I suspect, is the conception of the 3rd line. Even with Clarkson paired with Bolland made for a strong 2-way 3rd line, though little redundant because B and C play similar styles instead of complementary styles. But when Bolland went out, RC went cautious; when Nonis picked up Holland, RC didn’t change his concept of the 3rd line and instead tunneled deeper into his “checking line” model. Which left Clarkson adrift — certainly not optimizing what he brings to the team.

    Put McClement on the 4th between Ashton and D’Amigo, and you actually have a decent 4th; put Holland on the 3rd line between Kulemin and Raymond. A variation on WesternDP’s proposal.

    What drives me nuts about the Armageddon logic (the team’s crap, sell or trade away everything and start over) is the denial that the Leafs do have options right now. We just have roster-decision makers who are so burrowed into their concept that they don’t look around. Sorry, Stan, doomsdayers are over-committed to the idea of self-fulling prophecies.

    There’s this silly mantra in the tech world that “failure is success.” But what it means is that failure can be success if you learn to innovate. The chief obstacle to learning from failure in the management world is ego, being overly identified with the model that’s floundering instead of fixated on improving.

  • Leaf Fan in Mexico

    Great article Steve. Your proposed line up looks good in theory. But the Leafs are missing a critical something, which can only be described as something many decent Leafs teams miss…and there is a $1 million reward available for anyone who can actually say what that is.

    Personally, I think the Leafs have the talent of a team that should make the playoffs even if only just make it. Why are they so determined to not live up to their potential? My answer: leadership up front. Sure Kessel will get you goals, JVR has some good hands and cycles pretty well, Kadri has loads of potential and nice hands etc… but not one of them drags the team towards that mythical land where the sum total of team performance is better than any individual effort… and lets be serious, the Leafs do not have the star power tow win based on individual effort, they need a full team effort to win… I would trade Kessel in a heartbeat for a lower scoring guy which can drag up the performance and point tallies of those around him any day… Tis unfortunate that Nonis went 7 – 7 with Phaneuf after being a bit positive on him it is abundandly clear he just dont got the leadership cajones…

    Steve, you said it before Christmas sometime, what is it with this team, what is missing. Its not the talent, its leadership and we are just not seeing it from coaching or players….

  • STAN

    Another thing the Leafs management could do: On those nights when Kessel or JVR are mailing it in; throw Clarkson up to top line to create a bit of mayhem for a shift or two or three.