Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Truc Life?

First and foremost, I'm sorry for the lack of posts. Only three posts in the month of February?...I'll blame it on the short month! In reality, I've just been busy with work. They have implemented these new "enhancements" which, to my understanding, are supposed to improve things but instead they have made my job a living hell. This is no different from the enhancements that Burke has brought to the Leafs this season. Did anybody really expect the Leafs to be this bad? Prior to the start of the season most experts, bloggers and hockey fans all over had them pegged as a team fighting for the playoffs instead of a team fighting to get out of the basement.

The biggest change Burke made to this year's edition of the Leafs were to inject them with truculence. Leafs bloggers latched on to this word harder than a hungry baby would to a tit and why wouldn't they? Burke won a Stanley Cup with a truculent team! To illustrate just how infatuated we were with truculence, some of us were excited over having Garnet Exelby as a third pairing defenceman because of videos like

Sporting a 21-33-12 record through 66 games, I think it's fair to ask the question "Is truculence overrated?" (Obviously) To answer this, I took a look at the games we played this season.
Through 66 games played:
  • 29 of them had at least a fight. Our win/loss record in those games is 8-21 (.275 Winning %)
  • We had more penalty minutes than our opposition in 26 of those games. Our win/loss record in those games is 6-20 (.231 Winning %)
  • 16 of those games featured a fight(s) while we lead in penalty minutes. Our record in those games is 3-13 (.188 Winning %)
  • In the 27 games where there the opposition had more penalty minutes and didn't feature any fights, our record is 11-16 (.407 Winning %)
Obviously there are many factors that I didn't account for like when the fight started (Was it within the first 5 minutes of the game? Was it during a blow out?); how the fight started (Planned fight off the draw? Coming to the aid of a team mate?) and who won the fight, but my half-assed analysis shows that 1) The Leafs aren't very good 2) I'm lazy and 3) Skill > Truculence!*

*Outcome of games played may have differed greatly if Vesa Toskala didn't suit up for 26 games