Toronto Maple leafs moves – personal opinion

I think the Leafs have an opportunity to make some moves here and allow their younger players in. There are players who have become stale and their lack of work ethic is becoming apparent. Here are some moves I would like to see done or considered.

Komisariek – Trading Block asking for a 2-3rd pick
MacArthur – Medium level prospect or pick
Kulemin – If we can get him for cheaper and keep him as a 3rd line checking winger I would be ok with that. If not then a 3-4th rounder would suffice for me.
Bozak – 2nd rounder or high level prospect. He works well with phil but we need a big #1 center for that role. Stock rises closer to the playoff push and easily could get more.
Steckel – Could easily be trade bait for teams with injuries down the middle trying to make a playoff run. Could net us a 2nd rounder and a prospect for desperate teams.

Personally, I don’t like Grabovski’s contract or the amount of money he was given. A player of that caliber is a good second line center but he doesn’t put up anywhere near the points to collect more then Phil Kessel. That line has been garbage since the 2011 season where they all seems to be prepping for big contract increases.

Lineup:

Kessel – New C – Lupul
Frattin – Kadri – JVR
Komarov – Grabo – McLaren
Brown – McClement – Kuli
Extra: Orr

Phaneuf – Gunnarsonn
Holzer – Kostka
Liles – Franson
Extra: Fraser

If we moved all those players we could drop $13.15 million in cap space which could be used on players like Kadri, Kessel, Gunnarsonn to resign them. As the cap goes down we will need to be aware of the increases that players will want. Grabo’s contract may force him out of Toronto as its simply too high for the production we are getting from him. With that said Kessel’s performance this season may help to reduce the price he is given unless he can pick it up.

Post your thoughts in the comment section below.

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Time to cut the cord

Tonight, the leafs were in action against the Montreal Canadiens at the ACC. Montreal was overall dominate and no matter what flukes they got this game they should have won. Putting that aside I want to look at something that I feel is a serious issue within the leafs organization. They have been developing a large number of young, NHL prospective defense men down in the AHL. All organizations do this but the Leafs seem to have taken on a even bigger number of players then one would think normal. So many defense men have developed down in the AHL that it is now drastically affecting its NHL team roster. 2 players who have been in the NHL for years sat in the box tonight and didn’t play as younger players took their spot. While I think its great to have competition for spots the amount of money sitting in these boxes is unacceptable. 8.4 million worth of contracts to 2 players sat in the box and watched the game from high up in the ACC. J.M Liles at 3.875 and Mike Komesariek at 4.5 million annually collected their paychecks without lifting more then a fork tonight. J.M Liles has been in and out of the lineup this season as rookies come in and play extremely well. I have no issue with him going in and out as when he comes in to play, he plays well. Its the other guy that I believe Toronto needs to cut ties with.

Mike Komisariek signed a 5 year, 23 million dollar contract with the leafs in 2009. He was signed to give grit and sandpaper to a leafs team that was small and got pushed around a lot. He did a fairly good job (minus the first 3 games) until he got injured and was lost for the season. Again, in 2010 he came back saying that he was healthy. Injured rocked him again and put most of another season out of reach for Mike. In year 3 and now year 4 of his contract he has spent a lot of time in one place, the players box. He has been pushed from his spot by younger players who make much less then he does but do the job much more effectively. This season alone Komisariek has only participated in 4 games so far this season out of 20. His contract is now a burden to the leafs as an organization and is holding back younger players who would be much better suited to the NHL. Toronto needs to cut the cord with this player and get his salary back to use in signing more valuable players like Gunnarsonn, Franson, Kadri in the upcoming offseason.

While I don’t think Toronto is a fit for Komisariek anymore and that he needs to be moved I do not wish to bring any bad media to his name. He does a lot of charity work and is of great morale character. The time has just simply come for both the leafs and mike to move on with their lives.

Amazing Story

The media often portrays the negative as the daily aspect because for whatever reason negative stories seem to sell. Sometimes we seem to believe that this is real world and that it is a terrible place. Then stories like the NYC officer who gave the homeless man a pair of boots shows up. It reminds us that there is so much good in this world and that while we do mess up; humans are generally good. We as humans can do so much for each other to improve each other lives. It doesn’t matter the colour of one’s skin, where that person comes from or their mental abilities. I have to post this story because its simply amazing. The support for this player from the fans, to the coach to members on the other team is simply amazing. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

BB10 Pro’s and Con’s

I have owned a Blackberry Z10 for about 2 weeks now and would like to give a brief overview of my thoughts. I really do enjoy the phone and its a huge update over my Bold 9790 (which I love). The phone sits perfectly in my hands and is the perfect size for me to walk around one handed. I think that the phone really looks and feels great overall. The operating system moves smoothly and is able to handle any website I send its way. The Hub has a couple of things I would like to fix but overall its a nice merger of all my contacts. So I’ll get right into it:

Pro’s – BBM video and screen share work great. Screen share allowed me to show a friend an issue I was having and then work it out together. Instead of trying to explain it to him for 5-10 minutes I was able to show him.
– The gestures work rather nicely and while it is a bit of a learning curve. Eventually it just becomes second nature.
– The Native apps with cascades look great and flow really well
– The browser works great and is incredibly fast.
– Perfect fit for my hands, screen size allows me to use one hand very nicely.
– The keyboard is a huge plus. I have never owned a touchscreen device and was worried about the keyboard. I can say that the keyboard on BB10 is great and so is predictive text.
– As a phone it works great, call quality is great and the dial pad is huge.

Con’s – Lots of apps are Android ports, I would like to see more native built BB10 apps to take advantage of cascades.
– The Camera doesn’t have a lot of features and I’m not completely sold on it yet.
– The native twitter app is horrible, a huge downgrade from the BBOS version
– While the maps app works it would be nice to see some updates to it (better then apple maps).
– I find the screen to be fairly hard to see when there is significant sun outside.

In the future: I would like to see a panorama feature added to the camera.
– More editing features for the camera other then just the timeshift one
– Push more Native development for apps and get them out onto the phone first before a port
– A better system for updating apps on BB world. More general updates as well.

If you have a Blackberry device this phone is well worth upgrading for. The Q10 should also be a great phone for people waiting for the qwerty edition of BB10. This is a really good start for the new operating system and its up from here.

Learn as you grow plan

Education is the key to success in today’s world. The amount of education (along with other factors) will help determine what kind of lifestyle you are able to live. Unfortunately, for many young people they are not getting that education. Different factors in life are causing them to drop out before they complete their education. These people are then left to struggle to find meaningful employment in a world where even a grade 12 is now almost unacceptable. We need to figure out a way to get every kid educated and give them an opportunity to succeed. Traditional schools simply don’t work for many kids, and traditional education has aged without any real change. In Ontario, 81% of students are now graduating with a highschool diploma. The other 19% annually are forced to try and make life work on their own without the tools to succeed. So how do we help these students success our number 1 priority. We change the way we deal with students who have dropped out.

Teenage pregnancy rates have dropped in the last 20-30 years with the introduction of contraception and sex ed. Just because the rates have dropped doesn’t mean that teenage pregnancy doesn’t happen. We need to provide these girls with the opportunity to return to school while knowing their children are safe. Building daycare’s for certain schools will allow  girls to return and catch up on their education. The programming could also be configured to work with the mothers schedule. Allowing the student to learn the ropes as a parent but also not adding extra stress by a regular schedule could allow more students to stay in school. While the graduation may be delayed a little compared to her fellow students, the most important part is getting people the education they need to succeed.

Changing some mandatory classes around to give students a better idea of what will be going on in the real world. Its amazing how many times you hear “When will I ever use algebra again” but later on in life hear a lot of “I wish i had learned how to budget in school”. Many students take higher levels of maths, sciences and other courses so that they are eligible to enter into university. They learn all the theory and the processes that likely left their brain come summer time but they don’t learn about life. They don’t learn about how a mortgage works, or how a car loan works all important issues that will face them on a more common basis then trying to find x(1)y+875. Why, it is that we teach our kids to be engineers but forget the basics like budgeting. Our failure to teach kids these skills is showing in the debt to income ratio and the increases in student debt. People don’t know how a mortgage works until they walk into the bankers office and see it for themselves. I learned all this in a LDCC (workplace) math course but in truth I thought it was one of the most informative classes I had. I feel that I am much better prepared for the real world then I would have been if I had stayed in the college math course.

There is a hole between regular highschool education and adult education where a number of potential students are lost. This gap needs to be filled by another program that offers students the opportunity to pop in and learn. A student who had dropped out of highschool would come in to the facility and receive a lecture/homework for that class. The basis would work the same as college/ university where the class would be 1 time a week with the class being an extended period. Students would just carry one from where they left off when they dropped out. There would be no need to come in on a weekly basis unless the student wished too. Allowing people to continue learning at their own pace and not forcing them to show up will result in more attending. I remember not going to school cause I hated having to go to class. I have the option now of attending class or not in college and I am much happier to go now. As long as we can keep these students moving towards a diploma, one step at a time then we can work towards making the community a better place.

Helping to provide today’s youth with an education will go a long way in reducing the amount of poverty that we could have tomorrow. Every person that we help, returns the favor by becoming a valuable part of society. We have to do more to make sure that kids are getting the tools they need in order to become successful. We need to train them for real life issues instead of tools they may never use again.

Comment in the section below if you have any ideas.

Have a Good Day!

 

 

Shame

A video was posted on CBC news today showing Quebec Police beating a man who had been accused on robbing a business. We do know that this man was armed as shown in the video but the actions of the officers are completely unbecoming. The man has surrendered and has thrown the weapon aside but yet he still receives a number of kicks and punches. While we don’t know what has previously happened, I don’t think that it matters here. It would have taken one officer, with a second as backup to arrest this individual peacefully. These kind of actions are unbecoming of anyone and even more so for a police officer who is in a position of authority. These officers have been suspended with pay pending an investigation into the incident. Hopefully, we will see some kind of actions of which the courts seem fit. It would seem that assault charges would fit perfectly in this situation. Hopefully, the entire force is shown how to deal with someone who has surrendered cause this is just unacceptable.

http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/ID/2337567715/

*apologize if there is an ads -> taken from the cbcnews.ca website.

 

Rail is cheaper but…

Another day and another study has been done on how to best move the resources from the mining opportunities in Northern Ontario. KWG Resources Inc. has now determined that it is around 500 million dollars cheaper to build a rail line to the north as compared to a all season road. Their study has also determined that the movement of materials will be significantly cheaper per tonne then moving it by road. Both systems would take around 3 years to create and would still have to go through a environmental (although watered down now) check system. There are both positives and negatives to these different approaches and the decision on which one to take will be important for the future of our province and First Nations people’s.

The all season roadway would provide much needed access to the sites for both passengers and freight. It would allow for quick movement between pickle lake and the major centers in the Ring Of Fire. It also provides the neighboring First Nations communities like Fort Hope, Neskantaga and Nibinamik with access other then air. A land based travel system would significantly reduce the price of daily living in these communities and allow for heavier items to be transported to the communities for more then 2 months a year. The costs of this project is expected to be around 1.5 billion but will likely see increases due to the poor land quality in the area. There are also major questions that still need to be answered about this project and its benefits to those around it.

Will it be maintained when the projects are over? There are some thoughts that the Ring of Fire could produce for the next 50-100 years (in one form or another) but when the mining is done will it be maintained. By that time this road will be a lifeline for many aboriginal communities in the area. Returning to how things operate today will be completely unacceptable and First Nations leaders will need to push for an agreement on maintaining it, if this is the final decision.

Are the environmental impacts so detrimental that rail is better? Moving large quantities of items by truck is expensive and its also dirty. There will be a significantly higher amount of emissions and other detrimental affects on the environment in the area if the road is built. There will likely also be construction along the roadway continuing to change the environmental landscape. While this could provide economic opportunity to communities and business people along the roadway; determining how much expansion is appropriate will be important.

Is this another Fort McMurrary problem. When the road to Fort McMurrary was built they didn’t take into account the scope of traffic on the roadway. Thousands of people use this road daily to head to work or head home. There is also massive piece of equipment along this road which can cause a fairly dangerous ride. The speed, traffic density and an overloaded road system costs the lives of hundreds of people on an annual basis. The government’s hand has been forced an the road is being 4 laned at the cost of an additional 220 million dollars. If we are going to build this road it will need to be proper to the traffic volumes.

On to rail.

Rail provides a unique opportunity for the mining companies to lower their costs and provide a better business plan to bankers for money. Its a much more environmentally friendly and economical way to move people from site to site but also has it downfalls. A rail line wouldn’t provide the First Nations communities with the same economic opportunity as truck stops (etc) along the road line would. The reduced amount of emissions and environmental impact would play into their ballpark of keeping mother earth safe. One one hand there is a negative but on the other a positive that they hold close to their hearts. In a world where people are much more environmentally conscious, there will likely be a push for the rail line. Again there are questions to be asked about this to make it work for everyone. When the Ore hops on a rail car are we going to see it again or will it flow to Vancouver to ship to China. We need to push to make sure that more then just the extraction is done here. We can’t afford to keep sending away all our resources to supply jobs to others because they are only there once.

What benefit is there to the First Nations Communities? A road allows for cheaper access to materials and items like food which are traditionally flown into these communities. Is there an opportunity to make a stations where a train could drop off materials or people. Obviously there is a environmental benefit by the reduction in emission but is the economic opportunities lost by not having a road line too much?

How are we going to move people? Ontario is in the process of closing down the ONTC which means there will be even less opportunity for people to travel by rail. Would the government of the day really be willing to start up another company like which they just closed to serve this route. Would VIA rail be willing to partner with these companies to serve this area during the mining boom. What happens when the passengers stop and it is just the odd person going for medical treatment. Are we back to square one again?

There are opportunities but we need to have plans for the medium and long term. We need to work with the First Nations leaders to pick the best option for not only their people but the people to come. This could benefit all of Ontario significantly but we need it to benefit Northwestern Ontario the most. We only get one shot with these resources and we are going to need to make the most of it. We need to leave the land a better place then it was for our children and have the plans in place now. We need to work together on this project as equals and as stakeholders with a lot to gain and lose from this transaction.

Comment in the section below.