‘Todd Crocker’s Blog’ Posts

He’s got questions.

Casey the Marlies transportation coach, wanted to know where some of the guys who have boarded the land plane have ended up. The truth is he often knows exactly where most of his former bus buddies have gone but this time he provided a list of 5 names. With razor sharp keyboarding skills and a detective like cunning…I asked Samantha Houser who did all the work.

Greg Scott – The Victoria B.C left wing came to the Marlies out of the Seattle Thunderbirds of the WHL where he finished […]

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January 14th was a Saturday. It didn’t start with the usual Saturday stuff; getting out the vacuum, moving the laundry to the washing machine, taking the dog for a long walk, directly tapping into the coffeemaker. It started with a goal from Colin Greening and another point for Brendan Leipsic.

It didn’t end the way the usual Saturday ended either. There was no hand shaking and laughing about a great party. There was no coming home to kids who stayed up too late. There wasn’t a cold few minutes of waiting […]

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For a long time I’d been getting this document. One of the hardest working guys in Hamilton would create it while he worked for the Bulldogs and then for years after he was let go. Dedication likely doesn’t go far enough to describe Mike Marasco. But this isn’t about him, and to be forthright, he wouldn’t love the attention.

The document that passed between us was something he called Wherearetheynow? At first the whole title ran all together because that’s how computer files had to be named. It was an immense […]

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If you’ve been watching Facebook Live we’ve been taking you on a walk to the rink some mornings when the team is on the road. What can be remarkable about seeing some of these old cities like Utica or Hartford is the slow positive changes they are making after years of steady decline. It’s sometimes hard to pinpoint a project a decision that began the change but it is always pretty easy to see the point it did change.

For the Marlies, 2016 was the most successful this Leafs development team […]

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More than a third of a way into the season the Marlies find themselves in fourth in the North division based on points and winning percentage. Although percentages won’t figure into the Eastern Conference in how things shake out its a good indicator in a league that can see a variance of more than a few games in the games played column. While fans at Ricoh are still seeing their fair share of wins with a home record of 9-4, the road has been less than charitable as the team […]

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Home through a snow storm. It seems somewhat appropriate. The Marlies road trip and past six weeks was a storm of games that saw some bright spots but has been hard to assess while in the middle of it. And they remain somewhere in it that hasn’t quite defined itself because they haven’t come out the other side. While forecasters are usually pretty good about the amount of snow that will fall there are times they are wildly off the mark. Right now the Marlies might like a brief respite to check […]

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Carl Jung was a brilliant student of the mind. He often stepped in the exact opposite steps as Sigmund Freud. In one area they didn’t quite agree was the shadow. Jung believed the shadow part of you was everything that you didn’t present in the open. Not everything in your shadow was negative, it was just not apparent.

The Marlies have been in shadow for more than a little while. They have been learning about who they are and what they need to do in order to have some success out […]

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Bridgeport, Connecticut. A sunny day, but dreary news. The player who had played 77 games in a 76 game season, the one who had scored essentially a point a game for his new team and finished in the top twenty of in league scoring was a healthy scratch. It was confounding even on a talented team like the Marlies. For the organization, they were seeking information about their young players on a crowded roster. For the player, it was the first healthy scratch he could ever remember. If he was […]

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For the first two games of the 12 game series with the IceCaps this year they had the very suspicious look of the same kinds of games from last season. That should prove entertaining for fans in both cities.

Tha Marlies fell in the first game 4-1 with their lone goal coming from Kasperi Kapanen whose weekend had just started to get going. That tie the game at one apiece with further play into the second looking almost cautious. The Marlies hit a season low two shots on goal in the […]

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He didn’t know he tied it.

He did know he broke it

Antoine Bibeau has had a Halloween bag full of treat this month. The last sweet moment came with the AHL honouring him with the CCM/AHL Goaltender of the Month. Watching it unfold was truly a period by period experience. Each time the calm strength that the Marlies netminder came into play it seemed to spring a new fountain of confidence in both himself and his teammates.

His two shutouts were unlike each other. In one his team played solidly in front […]

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Starting the weekend on Thursday is usually a good thing. As the Marlies wheeled down the I-90 to Rochester with three games in front of them optimism followed them closely. Two openers at home with two wins and more importantly improvement in both. Friday night brought some surprises.

Brooks Laich joined the Marlies for his first game in the AHL since winning a Calder Cup with the Hershey Bears in 2006. He came flying out for the pre-game skate a drove a solid pace for Toronto. Kasperi Kapanen knocked […]

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Change can be good but as the Marlies opened their regular season with a lineup that hadn’t yet played together in a game they found that familiarity with scoring didn’t change at all.

Twenty times last season the Marlies scored 5 or more goals in a game. They started with two five goal games this weekend to see if that total can be surpassed.

The chitter chatter around players in their second and third years of development is always about dominating play. This is the time the expectation […]

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The ampersand besides being a mondegreen (a word whose mispronunciation becomes the accepted use of the word)  denotes the connection of two items that share a similar relationship. This & That, To & Fro, In & Out are all good candidates of the one time last letter of the alphabet.

The two Toronto’s have never been more connected than they are right now. They combined this past year to further the ultimate goal of making the big club better. Competition for spots are intense and hard choices had to […]

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After five days and three games in Newfoundland versus the St. John’s Ice Caps here’s what the results are:

Three wins and the Colemans Cup

Mason Marchment will get a chance to start the season with the Marlies. He picked up a goal this past weekend and stood out in the rookie tournament. His story is a great one we’ll tell along the way. With the resources available in player development his ceiling his high.

William Wrenn, the former Texas Stars d-man and second round pick of the San […]

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Colin Smith is in another league. And literally he is from most of this group. 20 goals last year at the AHL level. Not exactly rookie camp material but the Marlies coaching staff like his work and wanted to make sure others saw the talented Centre too. If you didn’t catch him with Marlies last season, you might have been surprised by his OT GWG in Game 1 vs Ottawa. If you saw him when he came over from San Antonio (Colorado) you’re smiling quietly to yourself as you knew he was […]

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The West will have to be won without the Marlies input this season. Last year Toronto played 16 out of conference games (more than double any other team) including 4 games against the eventual Calder Cup champion Lake Erie Monsters (Columbus). Despite taking 6 of 8 points against the nowly named Cleveland club, and only losing one other out of conference game, the schedule makers aren’t cross conference fans. Also missing is what had developed into a terrific rivalry, the Grand Rapids Griffins (Red Wings) but things have to give […]

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Anger is a sign of weakness in the Inuit culture. It is born out of the fact that it is a hinderance to survival which is the ultimate success test. Anger robs you of focus, it robs you of energy, it distracts you from your true goals. In the far north it’s plain to see why anger can’t exist in abundance.

The summer of woulda, coulda, shoulda has started for teams that didn’t hoist a Cup but thought they would. This includes the Toronto Marlies. The dominant way they presided over […]

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Back when the tiny plastic bricks every kid has played with since they started taking over toy stores in 1958 we’re still in their infancy, it was a pretty good bet only a select few could sense their impending success. Ole Kirk Christiansen the inventor of the simple little building system is thought to have believed they would never have replaced wooden toys. But there were many observers including his son who saw the tremendous possibilities in the connecting of many bricks into anything you wanted to make.

The Maple Leafs […]

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The usually reliable road warriors, the Toronto Marlies had a couple of late game losses, OT in Providence and last minute in Albany but took 3 out of a possible 6 points as they end their last significant road trip until the playoffs start. They are the only team in the single digits right now for their magic number. Here’s a look at some sights on the road that rolled through some old school AHL towns.

Pretty clear where this is, Hello Maine.

Fans of the blue and white go everywhere, […]

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The Marlies made their way to New England first stopping in Boston to practice at the Historic Matthews Arena at Northeastern University.

Two hours ahead at Pearson for the Marlies as they look to board their Air Canada flight to Boston.

Rinat Valiev waiting for his zone to be called.

Getting to the rink for some lunch and skate on the warmest day of the year so far

First look at the Historic Matthews Arena

Eating the Box lunch out the back door.

Watching the Huskies of Northeastern skate, Justin […]

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