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LHX1990 Mar 8
Sussex 182 for 7 (Nash 65, Dexter 5-41) lead Leicestershire 135 (Dexter 52, Magoffin 5-50, Archer 4-31) by 47 runsScorecard A green pitch and humid conditions saw wickets tumble on the first day of the Specsavers County Championship Division Two match between Leicestershire and Sussex at the Fischer County Ground. Alex Len Jersey . After dismissing Leicestershire for 135, Sussex finished the day in front on 182 for 7, despite Neil Dexter following Steve Magoffin in taking a five-for.Sussex captain Ben Brown cannot have thought too long and hard before deciding to exercise the away teams right to bowl first, and was immediately rewarded when the first delivery of the match, bowled by Magoffin, seamed back and took the inside edge of Paul Hortons bat before being caught by Brown behind the stumps.Magoffin and Ollie Robinson continued to beat the bat regularly, but Angus Robson and Dexter added 55 for the second wicket before Robson, on 18, left a delivery from Jofra Archer which both seamed back in and stayed low before knocking off and middle stumps out of the ground. Magoffin, playing his 150th first-class game, then removed Leicestershire skipper Mark Cosgrove with a well-pitched up delivery which swung back in and trapped the left-hander leg before.Dexter fought his way through until lunch in the company of Mark Pettini, but after the break Leicestershire lost their last seven wickets in adding just 45 runs. Archer bowled Pettini with a beauty, the ball nipping back to hit to the top of off-stump, and soon after going to his 50 with an expansive cover drive, an attempt to repeat the shot saw Dexters off stump uprooted by Archer.Lewis Hill, defending on the back foot, played on to Magoffin, who quickly made it five for the innings by having Clint McKay caught at first slip and bowling Zak Chappell with a ball that seamed back in. Raine edged a brute of a delivery from Archer, and Eckersley, looking to force the pace, gave mid-on a simple catch off a leading edge.When Sussex began their reply, Chris Nash and Ed Joyce, both of whom have already passed 1000 runs in the Championship this season, compiled an opening partnership of 82 before Joyce was bowled by Charlie Shreck, an inswinger clipping the top of the left-handers off-stump.Nash went to his 50, his eighth of the season, before a late decision to leave a Dexter delivery saw the ball clip the bat and cannon on to the stumps. Luke Wells was drawn into an attempted drive and edged Shreck to wicketkeeper Eckersley, and Dexter, pitching the ball up and swinging it away from the right-handers, went on to complete his first five wicket haul for Leicestershire, having Craig Cachopa and Fynn Hudson-Prentice caught behind, and Phil Salt and David Wiese leg before to keep his side in the game. Tyson Chandler Jersey . A big centre with all the tools to be an elite player, Johansen paced the Blue Jackets with a standout game Saturday night. He had a goal and two assists for a career-high three points as Columbus beat the New York Islanders 5-2 to snap a five-game losing streak. Charles Barkley Jersey .J. -- New York Giants wide receiver Victor Cruz will miss the rest of the season after having surgery on his left knee. http://www.cheapsunsjerseys.com/?tag=cheap-tyler-ulis-jersey . Numbers Game examines the deal that sees Michael Del Zotto and Kevin Klein switch places. The Predators Get: D Michael Del Zotto.The Toronto Maple Leafs made the playoffs for the first time since 2004 and took the heavily-favoured Boston Bruins to the seventh game, yet the season ended with disappointment when the Leafs surrendered a three-goal third-period lead. Off-Season Game Plan looks at a Leafs team that has much work to do if they are going to continue along the playoff road. As always there will be personnel decisions to address, but the first order of business for the Maple Leafs is understanding that they overachieved last season. That is, their place in the standings was not supported by sustainable underlying statistics, so they cant rest on their playoff laurels thinking that they are simply a playoff team going forward. Maple Leafs GM Dave Nonis recognizes that the Leafs have work to do. "We took some significant steps," he told the Toronto Star after the Leafs were eliminated from the playoffs. "Theres room for improvement. We need to get better. We need to add more pieces. Weve taken some significant steps. But were not there. Were not playing tonight." Tied with Edmonton for the leagues worst shot differential, with terrible possession metrics, the Maple Leafs had to rely on exceptional percentages (first in shooting percentage, ninth in save percentage) to earn a playoff berth. It worked, but maintaining those exceptional percentages is extremely difficult. Looking ahead, to build a team that has long-term sustainable success, the Maple Leafs have to improve their puck possession and that means they can improve at both ends of the rink, finding forwards that control play as well as defencemen that can reduce the number of chances against. These objectives arent easily achieved in a year with a relatively thin free agent market and with a decreasing salary cap. The Leafs have the financial might to use compliance buyouts to give them the most advantageous position possible, and the Leafs are likely going to need to be aggressive in order to make the moves necessary to remain a playoff contender. This isnt meant to rain on the Leafs playoff parade, merely to serve as fair warning that the work is just beginning. The TSN.ca Rating is an efficiency rating based on per-game statistics including goals and assists -- weighted for strength (ie. power play, even, shorthanded) -- plus-minus, hits, blocked shots, giveaways, takeaways, penalty differential and faceoffs. (Stats are listed in this format: G-A-PTS, +/-, PIM, GP). Generally, a replacement-level player is around a 60, a top six forward and top four defenceman will be 70-plus, stars will be over 80 and MVP candidates could go over 90. Sidney Crosby finished at the top of the 2013 regular season ratings with a 93.65. Salary cap information all comes from the indispensable www.capgeek.com. GM/COACH Dave Nonis/Randy Carlyle Returning Forwards Player Rating GP G A PTS +/- Cap Hit Joffrey Lupul 85.38 16 11 7 18 +8 $5.25M Phil Kessel 79.16 48 20 32 52 -3 $5.4M James van Riemsdyk 72.76 48 18 14 32 -7 $4.25M Matt Frattin 67.55 25 7 6 13 +6 $925K Nikolai Kulemin 64.99 48 7 16 23 -5 $2.8M Jay McClement 61.78 48 8 9 17 0 $1.5M Mikhail Grabovski 59.56 48 9 7 16 -10 $5.5M Colton Orr 53.39 44 1 3 4 +4 $925K Free Agent Forwards Player Rating GP G A PTS +/- Class 12-13 Cap Hit Nazem Kadri 76.83 48 18 26 44 +15 RFA $1.72M Tyler Bozak 67.32 46 12 16 28 -1 UFA $1.5M Clarke MacArthur 65.41 40 8 12 20 +3 UFA $3.25M Leo Komarov 58.86 42 4 5 9 -1 RFA $1.2M Frazer McLaren 54.71 36 3 2 5 0 RFA $633K Maple Leafs Forwards Usage Chart from somekindofninja.com Injuries limited Joffrey Lupul to just 16 games last season and, while his production was terrific in that small sample, its worth noting that he generated more shots per game in each of the previous two seasons. It just so happened that, in the few games that he did play in 2013, Lupul scored on a preposterous 26.2% of his shots. His career average is 11.5%, so its possible that Lupul isnt really a 56-goal scorer (pro-rating his 11 goals in 16 games over an 82-game season), but credit where its due: he has 85 points in 82 games over the last two seasons. Only six others (Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Steven Stamkos, Claude Giroux, Martin St. Louis and Jason Spezza) have more than Lupuls 1.04 points per game in that span. The real game-breaking scorer for the Leafs, however, is Phil Kessel, who plays well with Lupul when they are on the same line, but has accumulated 110 even-strength goals over the last five seasons, ranking fifth in the league in that time, behind only Alex Ovechkin, Steven Stamkos, Rick Nash and Ilya Kovalchuk. On top of that, Kessels first-round performance against the Bruins (four goals, six points, plus-3 in seven games) helped alleviate any concerns that his game wouldnt translate in a physical playoff series. James van Riemsdyk was a nice addition to the Leafs lineup, showing the soft hands that helped him get drafted second overall in 2007. In Toronto, van Riemsdyk was given more responsibility, playing a career-high 19:12 per game, and he delivered the best goal and point-scoring rates of his career. In 82 career games, Matt Frattin has tallied 15 goals and 28 points, while playing 13:13 per game; relatively modest totals, but enough to indicate that hes worthy of a regular spot on the roster. At his best, Frattin uses his speed to forecheck, create turnovers and generate offence. Hes also sturdy enough to play a physical game, which makes him a fine fit for the third line. His 30-goal season in 2010-2011 may forever ruin expectations, since hes come nowhere close since, but Nikolai Kulemin is a reliable two-way winger who was thrust into a very difficult role last season, playing the toughest matchups and starting most of his shifts in the defensive zone with less than ideal results. However, as a top nine forward with some offensive upside, Kulemin is an asset, if not quite what the Leafs might have thought they had a couple of seasons ago. Veteran checking centre Jay McClement had a solid first season in Toronto, scoring at a career-best (0.17 gpg) pace, but he does the heaviest lifting when it comes to matchups and zone starts. He has a niche and thats defensive play and penalty-killing. Coming into 2013, Mikhail Grabovski had back-to-back seasons with at least 20 goals and 50 points, but with Nazem Kadri emerging as a scorer, Grabovski was pressed into a defensive role that didnt necessarily mesh with skills that he had shown previously. With Tyler Bozak approaching free agency, the Leafs may be less inclined to shed Grabovskis contract through a compliance buyout, but either that or a trade would have to be a consideration if hes still third on the centre depth chart because a $5.5-million cap hit is very pricey for a bottom six role. It should be noted that, on the heels of such a down season, Grabovski still ranked third among Maple Leafs forwards in ice time in the first round of the playoffs against Boston. He somehow managed to finish minus-10 in seven games, despite ranking among the Leafs best in puck possession for the series. After several years of up and down and not quite ready, Nazem Kadri was given a chance to play last season and made the most of it, scoring nearly a point per game despite modest ice time. Among players with at least 40 points last season, Kadri easily has the lowest ice time at 16:03 per game; he was the only one under 17 minutes per game. Now, for as terrific as Kadris 2013 season was, its imperative to note that hes ripe for regression next season. For one thing, he scored on 16.8% of his shots and thats awfully difficult to repeat. Since 2000-2001, there are 13 players to shoot 16.0% with at least 200 shots on goal and few, if any, profile to be a similar player to Kadri; its more of a crease-crashing crowd with a few sharpshooters mixed in. Aside from that, though related, is that the rest of those on the ice with Kadri scored at unnaturally high rates (14.4% at 5-on-5, when league average hovers around 8.0% and a decent playmaker named Sidney Crosby has exceeded 14.0% once in in the last six seasons). None of this guarantees that Kadris production will decline next season, as an increase in ice time or better linemates could certainly stem the regression tide somewhat, but the point is that its extremely unlikely that he can duplicate his rate of production without either more ice time, more shots on goal or, preferably, both. It appears that Leo Komarov is headed back to the KHL, which would be a notable loss even though he didnt score much. He plays an in-your-face game and was solid in possession terms relative to his teammates. Picked up on waivers, Frazer McLaren made the most of his opportunity with the Maple Leafs, fighting a dozen times, and playing most nights. He has 11 points and 187 penalty minutes in 75 career games, playing a little over five minutes per game, so there is no secret to McLarens game and he gives the Leafs a double-heavyweight tandem with Colton Orr, for whatever that might be worth. Orr just inked a two-year contract extension, with the Leafs talking about how much he improved his skating, and while that may be true, his impact on the game still remains in the heavyweight battles he undertakes. If the Maple Leafs decide to invest in Tyler Bozak as an unrestricted free agent, that will come at the expense of potentially adding somewhere else. Some free agents that might appeal to Torontos brass, offering some offensive ability and toughness, include David Clarkson, Ryane Clowe or Nathan Horton. For fun, they could always take a trip on the Jaromir Jagr twilight tour but, really, a forward that can contribute in the top six is a fair objective. At the same time, adding insurance down the middle (Matt Cullen, Stephen Weiss) would be necessary if Bozak departs. Returning Defence Player Rating GP G A PTS +/- Cap Hit Dion Phaneuf 73.68 48 9 19 28 -4 $6.5M Jake Gardiner 73.46 12 0 4 4 0 $1.117M Joohn-Michael Liles 68. Grant Hill Jersey. 1 32 2 9 11 -1 $3.875M Mike Komisarek 62.61 4 0 0 0 +2 $4.5M Free Agent Defence Player Rating GP G A PTS +/- Class 12-13 Cap Hit Cody Franson 77.34 45 4 25 29 +4 RFA $1.2M Carl Gunnarsson 68.95 37 1 14 15 +5 RFA $1.325M Mark Fraser 66.65 45 0 8 8 +18 RFA $600K Ryan OByrne 63.08 42 2 4 6 -4 UFA $1.8M Mike Kostka 62.85 35 0 8 8 -7