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Monday Mailbag: Nightmare Fuel Edition

I went looking for questions for the mailbag today with the hope that I could provide you my elite insight into the Toronto Maple Leafs. Unfortunately around the time I went looking for questions, the Flyers decided to unleash the greatest thing to happen to hockey since the Ballard funeral. So while we are short on questions, I assure you that it is for the greater good of us all enjoying the Flyers mascot.

I thought I’d start with this question because it’s my favourite question of the lot. It has layers and since we don’t have a lot of questions we can deal with those layers.

First, Bracco has been a very good AHL player who has shown constant improvement and could very well be solid winger in the NHL someday, but nothing is certain on that, so right now he should have some value around the league as an asset worth acquiring. As much as Bobby has it right here in that Bracco is a player we are hilariously quick to include in trade proposals, especially when trying to turn 3 assets into one great asset, he’s also right that Bracco is a player teams would get in that kind of deal. So while he’s usually right, Bobby is double right in this situation. Bracco is a solid trade chip.

Next we have to look at the fact that not only will Kapanen and Johnsson be getting new contracts soon, by the time that Bracco is entering the league there won’t be team friendly deals for Brown or Hyman in the picture in all likelihood. That’s going to make cheaper contract wingers like Bracco, Grundstrom, Timashov, etc. valuable somewhere down the line and rotating in cheap RFA wingers in the bottom six while shipping out the expensive ones is probably the way to go, and keeping Bracco will help them do that.

So there’s a case to be made either way. The way that I lean, and will probably continue to lean is that Bracco isn’t a player I’d be quick to give up. I wouldn’t ship him out for a Plekanec-type rental at the deadline, or swap him for another teams prospect for the sake of addressing an AHL/replacement level NHL player. Bracco should be considered a means to address a key need in the Leafs lineup if he stays or goes, and if the end result is that he never pans out, that’s a reasonable risk considering that’s what happens with most prospects anyway.

As much as I believe that life is too short to care about AHL hockey, I will push through and try and form a reasonable answer despite my disinterest.

The fact is I have some legitimate opinions on who could be exciting to watch on the Growlers this season, and the ECHL has given the Leafs/Marlies Mason Marchment and Justin Holl to care about in recent years, so I’d say the Growlers could be interesting, or at the very least they’ll be fun.

As a fan of the WHL, I have to say that I’m interested in what Hudson Elynuik and Giorgio Estephan will do for the Growlers. I’m also quickly becoming a fan of likely Growler Emerson Clark, as are a lot of people, I think. That’s already a pretty exciting lineup. If I’m reaching for a couple of other names, I’d probably say that Kristian Pospisil and J.J. Piccinich are worth watching. Pospisil was considered to be a decent prospect at one point, and the fact that the Leafs haven’t cut ties with Piccinich could mean there is still some hope for him to break out. Also Eamon McAdam is yours to enjoy. Neat.

All I can say is that the ECHL is a fun league and has the benefit of not taking itself as seriously as the AHL, and that will probably lead to a more enjoyable product than what the Marlies are.

People really don’t appreciate how exhausting it is living on the cutting edge all the time. That’s why I think you should all paypal me some money. These jokes aren’t free folks. I’ve got a family to feed.

Now we’ve come to part where I unfortunately have to answer to trio of questions from @kidkawartha because we’ve got to fill out this post somehow…

#1.

I used to have no probably with saying who the Leafs worst prospect was (‘sup Max Everson?), but in my old age I’ve softened and hate the idea of saying that some 19 year old kid is the worst hockey player in the Leafs system. That being said I’m fairly certain that Fabrice Herzog still counts as part of the Leafs system and won’t be reading this, so I’ll say he’s the worst and I’d absolutely trade him straight up for Ho-Sang. On a much more realistic note, I’d trade almost any Marlie for Ho-Sang, and the ones that come to mind first are Adam Brooks and Andrew Nielsen.

#2.

I think I’ve kept it together pretty well, but I can’t guarantee that I’ll still be able to hold it together the first time Matthews-Tavares-Marner-Kadri-Rielly take the ice in a regular season game, likely lighting up Carey Price in the opener. That’s the good stuff, and why we are all here. It’s also pretty darn nice that we still have Marleau, Nylander, and Gardiner to throw on a second unit powerplay.

#3.

Here’s the thing with Hawaiian Pizza. It’s terrible and it’s cruel that Hawaiians have their names dragged through the mud over a pizza they didn’t invent. Unfortunately this crime against food is from Canada and should bring us all shame.

Now that we’ve established the parameters of this, if I have a Hawaiian Pizza on a desert island, the pineapple is probably what I’m eating since there is nothing wrong with pineapple. There is something wrong with the rest of the pizza that is inedible since it’s been soaked in pineapple juice.

However I was raised not to waste food, and what we have there is perfectly good bait for fishing or potentially bait that could be put in a trap for capturing a tasty animal.

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  • Stan Smith

    Only thing I am going to comment on is your statement about Bracco. I don’t think you can say a player that was benched for most of the AHL playoffs “has been a very good AHL player”. Did he improve as last season went on? Yes. Does he have the potential of becoming a good AHL player? Definitely. But, he is not there yet. I do agree that he is potentially the exact type of player the Leafs will be needing in a couple of seasons.