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3rd Line Center
#1
What is the general consensus on what the role of the Leafs 3rd line center with Tavares and Matthews holding the 1a and 1b spots?

In my opinion the 3rd line should be able to play the shutdown role, take the majority of defenses zone face regardless of match up against the other teams top lines. This allows for versatility in the "in game line match ups". Also the 3rd line Center should take a predominate role in the PK for the defensive zone faceoffs, specifically starting off the PK which was an issue against Bruins PP. 

Obviously last year's signing of Tavares changed the depth Leafs center depth. Kadri had the Tavares role in the past and was responsible at times for the shutdown role when matched up against other teams top line. This year specifically in the playoffs Babcock slotted the Tavares/Marner line into that role. It's an unknown of what the match up changes may have been if Kadri was available for the full playoff series.

I also don't feel that utilizing Kardi on the PP benefited the leafs, I'm not saying that because he isn't skilled enough or not effective on the PP, but because it seemed that when the PP was finished a mix match of players took the next shift typically against the opponents top line and not the 3rd "shut down" line and the zone time would typically be in the leafs end.  

My view is that Kadri wasn't typically used on the PK for faceoffs and his line not giving the responsibility of the "Shutdown line" this past year, is there a 3rd line center fit that would be better suited for the Leafs group or does the use of Kadri on the 3rd line need to be more effective for future success. 

It's definitely a nice change and benefit for the leafs in recent years that our current forward depth fills out top 2 lines.
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#2
I agree completely but you will have a hard time convincing anyone we should trade kadri. Personally I think a Colin Wilson or Brandon Tanev as ufas or a Colton Scissons via trade would be a better fit.
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#3
Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.
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#4
DRW, I think your clarification of a shutdown line needs elaboration. For instance, would you put a shutdown line up against the Bergeron line minute to minute. Wouldn't that be cutting into Matthews' and JT's lines minutes.

The JT line was TO's shutdown line while also providing offense, quality players against the opposition's quality players. I can't see anything wrong with this.

I agree about Kadri because I think he'd be better utilized as a winger.

Yes TO definitely needs a better PK but I think the better PKers are already there just waiting to be used. JT, Matthews, Nylander and maybe even Kadri could probably do a better job, superior players should normally get superior results.
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#5
An ideal 3rd line C, at least in terms of one that only makes say ~2.5-3.5M and isn't on an ELC, would be one that can:

1) Play the PK
2) Play a physical gritty game, preferably with size
3) Add to our secondary scoring. Doesn't need to be like Kadri and capable of 50-60 points, but shouldn't be a guy putting up 15-25 points either
4) Can play a shutdown role

Not sure who's available. A guy like Lars Eller or David Bolland (before his decline/injuries) are the types I'm thinking of.

I agree that Kadri, given the way our other forwards are paid, is probably making ~1-2M more than what we want on the 3rd line. He should have a ton of trade value, and while I think who we bring in would be a downgrade, I think the role they play could be better suited for us (PK + shutdown rather than PP + mix of shutdown/secondary scoring).
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#6
(2019-05-16, 02:43 PM)hobster Wrote: DRW, I think your clarification of a shutdown line needs elaboration. For instance, would you put a shutdown line up against the Bergeron line minute to minute. Wouldn't that be cutting into Matthews' and JT's lines minutes.

The JT line was TO's shutdown line while also providing offense, quality players against the opposition's quality players. I can't see anything wrong with this.

I agree about Kadri because I think he'd be better utilized as a winger.

Yes TO definitely needs a better PK but I think the better PKers are already there just waiting to be used. JT, Matthews, Nylander and maybe even Kadri could probably do a better job, superior players should normally get superior results.

I don’t want to go into to much detail on Matthews/Tavares usage as I feel it’s a whole topic in itself but our top guys gotta play. That comes down to coaching.

Ideally Matthews and Tavares should play 20-22 minutes a night, I would not focus on the match up with our top 2 lines, let them play. I’d try and give Matthews as many offensive zone starts as possible, I don’t see too much concern with the defensive side of his game, just concerns with his should be line mate Nylander. 

Tavares with his experience and game can and should play any situation.

3rd line center should play 12-14 minutes a night and by shut down role, the focus should primarily be on the defensive side of the game, strong on the face off, puck possession and pk. 

4th line center would pick up the rest no more then 5-7 minutes a night, Gauthier fits the role.

I personally feel we don’t have the ideal 3rd center in place, due to various reasons including coaching usage and cap. Its not a knock at all against Kadri, if we can keep him and fit him in with the cap great provided he can gain some self discipline. 

I think with Marleau off the books next season the Leafs might have to find someone to bridge the 3rd line center for a year until the leafs cap situation becomes clearer.
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#7
Trade Kadri? Of course if the right deal is available for another young Center! I would do it in a heart beat! He hurst us this year with his personal actions over the team and the playoffs before that. Time to move on from this guy. I fully realize not many will agree but oh well, oh well!Z,
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#8
(2019-05-16, 02:39 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote: Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.

I think Adam Brooks would be further along then Joshua at this point having played in the AHL
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#9
(2019-05-16, 06:01 PM)Sportking Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 02:39 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote: Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.

I think Adam Brooks would be further along then Joshua at this point having played in the AHL

5'10", 175 lbs?
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#10
(2019-05-16, 06:01 PM)Sportking Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 02:39 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote: Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.

I think Adam Brooks would be further along then Joshua at this point having played in the AHL

Except Dakota is a beast and is 23. He has been steadily improving and I’d say many players have stepped into NHL from NCAA.
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#11
Dakota Joshua- 6'3", 200 lbs

Decent size, something TO needs but his stats have been regressing for the last 3 years. In my extensive readings of prospect rankings for the Leafs I can't say I remember anyone ranking him in TO's top ten.

I believe he is now a UFA as it will be, in June, 5 years since TO drafted him and he just finished his 4th year of University.

http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisp...pid=161083
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#12
(2019-05-16, 06:37 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 06:01 PM)Sportking Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 02:39 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote: Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.

I think Adam Brooks would be further along then Joshua at this point having played in the AHL

Except Dakota is a beast and is 23. He has been steadily improving and I’d say many players have stepped into NHL from NCAA.
Two players come to mind quickly, Paul Kayria and Tyler Bozak. Decent career grin!
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#13
(2019-05-16, 06:17 PM)hobster Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 06:01 PM)Sportking Wrote:
(2019-05-16, 02:39 PM)CuttingEdge Wrote: Dakota Joshua......in the system. I believe Ohio State.

Our #3 of rhe future.

I think Adam Brooks would be further along then Joshua at this point having played in the AHL

5'10", 175 lbs?

Doug Gilmour was 5'11" 175
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#14
(2019-05-16, 06:57 PM)hobster Wrote: Dakota Joshua- 6'3", 200 lbs

Decent size, something TO needs but his stats have been regressing for the last 3 years. In my extensive readings of prospect rankings for the Leafs I can't say I remember anyone ranking him in TO's top ten.

I believe he is now a UFA as it will be, in June, 5 years since TO drafted him and he just finished his 4th year of University.

http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisp...pid=161083

Yes you could be right.

I had been following his progress in 2018, but appears talk on him has stopped and he remains unsigned. He profiled well, but maybe he plateaued.
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#15
Kadri needs to be challenged. He didn't look engaged this year. I have no faith in Babcock whatsoever so I'd be reluctant to make a move likw that without seeing him with another (progressive/adaptable) coach
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#16
^ this may sound crazy but if Duabs could find a trading partner for Brown and Nylander and a 3rd line center UFA/AHL then why not move Naz to the wing on the 1st or 2nd line.? just spitballin here..lol
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#17
(2019-05-17, 12:04 PM)RATW-Leafaholic Wrote: ^ this may sound crazy but if Duabs could find a trading partner for Brown and Nylander and a 3rd line center UFA/AHL then why not move Naz to the wing on the 1st or 2nd line.? just spitballin here..lol

Nothing is crazy and nothing wrong with spitballing Happy
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#18
(2019-05-17, 12:04 PM)RATW-Leafaholic Wrote: ^ this may sound crazy but if Duabs could find a trading partner for Brown and Nylander and a 3rd line center UFA/AHL then why not move Naz to the wing on the 1st or 2nd line.? just spitballin here..lol

Not a fan of moving Naz to the wing personally. He plays on the wing on the pp and looks awful. The Leafs have experimented with this before and it just hasn't worked
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#19
Kadri is just fine as a 3rd line centre and that is where he should stay IMO. At that AAV and remaining term, I am totally fine with it. He just needs to take his head out of his own ass when it comes to the stupid stuff. Four suspensions for similar offences is unacceptable, forget two in back to back playoff rounds.
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#20
I think they should keep him as the 3rd line centre but load up the top 6 in the final minutes and give him some extra shifts on the wing.  Problem solved IMO.  This whole continuing the roll the lines crap is stupid.


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