Summer Skate: Toronto Maple Leafs
The ill-received Phil Kessel trade could actually pay off
Using the VUKOTA projection system of Puck Prospectus, Insider takes the temperature of key players on every NHL team. For a detailed explanation of Prospectus' proprietary GVT value metric, read more here.
Summer Skate -- Toronto Maple Leafs
Is Brian Burke a genius or a madman? Both positions had their supporters last season, as Burke paid a very high price at the beginning of the season for mercurial forward Phil Kessel and traded away seemingly every other player on his roster with offensive talent. In all, he dealt Matt Stajan, Ian White, Lee Stempniak, Alexei Ponikarovsky and Jason Blake. On the other hand, he won the sweepstakes for goaltender Jonas Gustavsson and acquired a blue-chip defenseman in Dion Phaneuf. The overall result was poor, as the Leafs finished 29th, and because of the Kessel trade, they didn't profit from the high draft pick that is the reward for such an awful finish.
Looking at this season's projections however, there's reason to reserve judgement on that ill-received trade.
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2010 NHL OFFSEASON
The writers of Puck Prospectus break out their VUKOTA projection system to examine players trending up and sliding down on every NHL team. And in anticipation of training camp, E.J. Hradek dishes on an intriguing player that could have a big impact in 2010-11.