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Sunday, October 13, 2013

Toronto Maple Leafs, Top 30 Players 2013-2014

It's only been six games, and a suspension and injuries have kept David Clarkson, Mark Fraser, and Nik Kulemin from dressing recently, yet the Toronto Maple Leafs keep winning. Here is a subjective ranking of the Top 30 Toronto Maple Leafs so far this season.

Bernier and Phaneuf backstop barrage of goal scorers

1. Johnathan Bernier - Steady to spectacular, he's economical and stingy

2. Dion Phaneuf - Top D-man on a 5-1 team and he's +3

3. Phil Kessel - Unselfish, slick passer leads team in assists yet again.

4. Joffrey Lupul - On fire since last year, clicking with Kadri.

5.  James van Riemsdyk - Power forward could score 40 goals.

6. Dave Bolland - Has led with efforts, earned more ice, then delivered

7. David Clarkson - Pushing teammates at practice, chomping at the bit.

8. Mark Fraser - Leafs +/- leader last year sorely missed.

9. Cody Franson - Changing roles as Reilly mentor.

10. Tyler Bozak - Solid 2-way game against league's top players.

11. Nazem Kadri - With Gardiner and Reilly, offers huge upside for Leafs to get even better.

12. James Reimer - Leafs among a select few teams with top young goalie tandem.

13. Mason Raymond - Will likely be offered a 2-year extension by December.

14. Jake Gardiner - Shaky start but now +3 and getting stronger.

15. Carl Gunnarsson - Best when not noticed, needs to stay out of penalty box.

16. Morgan Reilly - Making smarter decisions, may stick with big club.

17. Jay McClement - Defensive whiz has Leafs among top penalty-killing NHL teams.

18. Paul Ranger - Not finishing yet on offence, may end up as Leafs 7th D-man.

19. Carter Ashton - Could be in battle with Broll when Clarkson and Kulemin return.

20. Colton Orr - Steady play, will need to tap out for McLaren soon, to stay fresh. 

21. Troy Brodie - Will likely play for Marlies unless or Orr or McLaren is traded or injured.

22. David Broll - Dark horse Brolldozer earning an extended shot in bigs.

23. TJ Brennan - Marlies top D-man will get first callup if needed.

24. Trevor Smith - Marlies captain ready when required.

25. Jamie Devane - Needs AHL seasoning.

26. Josh Leivo - Has been steady in early season callup.

27. John-Michael Liles - May be moved to NHL if Leafs will pay half his salary.

28. Spencer Abbott - Needs to build confidence in AHL.

29. Drew McIntyre - 3-0 start with Marls, 2.30 GAA.

30. Stuart Percy - +3 for Marlies after 3 games.

Other Toronto Marlies to watch:

Jerry D'Amigo, Tyler Biggs, Greg McKegg, Peter Granberg, Andrew MacWilliam

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