Is it just me or did any of you find tonight’s 4-0 Leafs win less interesting than the 3-2 loss last night?
Not to take anything away from the Leafs win but; the Flyers didn’t look very good…only a few players looked interested.
Two words to describe tonight’s performance: Speed and stamina. As a group; the Leafs had more speed on the ice tonight and seemed to be able to maintain their legs straight through to the last minute of the 3rd. The forwards did a great job getting back to help the defencemen. While Reimer and Macdonald came up with a few big saves, it didn’t look like a tough night for the goalies – the Flyers were only able to muster 18 shots on goal.
- Stempniak from Kaberle and Hagman
- Kadri from Kaberle and Hagman
- Grabovski from Kulemin
- Hanson (unassisted)
Grabovski: Does anyone take a hit like Grabovski? After the first two big ones in the 1st; Grabs jumped back onto his skates without issue…others would have crawled off the ice. The 3rd one (an illegal hit) was a big on…a bone rattler. It took a few minutes but Grabovski got up. If the muscle on this team doesn’t set things straight early in games this season; I fear for Grabovski’s life (and ability to play 82).
Rosehill: He was not on my radar at all. Two straight “spirited” games. He isn’t going to make the team but he can throw them as well (or better) than Deveaux and isn’t a defensive liability.
Young Guns Score: Two games into the pre-season and all 4 “young guns” (Stralberg, Kadri, Bozak and Hanson) have scored…BTW; the “young guns” moniker is already bothering me. All four players put in a solid effort once again. Ponikarovsky needs to wake up and realize there are some hungry kids after his ice time.
Kadri’s goal tonight was the highlight. It was off a great give-and-go with Hagman…Nice for him in front of the London crowd. Hanson’s goal was sheer persistence. He went to the net and stuck with the play to bang in his first after a couple of whacks at it. Watch Kadri’s goal…
Wallin: Fourth line honours, fourth line ice time and honestly; I almost forgot he was in the line-up. I hope Wilson gives him some more ice time this weekend.
I Hope You Enjoyed Your 60 Min of Fame: 4 in 4 and 9 in 11 forces Wilson to use a lot of players. Tonight; he used 3 defencemen that have no chance of making the team. Sometimes it’s also about rewarding players for their hard work in practice…who knows. Tonight; Blacker, Gunnersson and Rogers got their chance to play…Early in the game, you could really tell why these guys aren’t NHL calibre (at least right now). They didn’t get beat or make glaring mistakes…they simply played too simple of a game…the puck was like a hot potato – they weren’t going to generate any offence. As the game went on they were a bit sloppy.
Kaberle: I know his contract and offensive style made him a tradable asset and many TSM readers hoped that he’d be moved for a top 6 forward. But man, very few control the puck and move it out of the defensive end like Kabs. Maybe trading him would have been a good move, I’m not necessarily saying it wouldn’t have been. But Leafs fans should really appreciate this guy more. He picked up two assists tonight.
Kulemin: Saw very little from him tonight….Will be in tough to make the team this season (need to check his contract – 2 way?)
Schenn: He moved the puck well and showed composure when pressured…He also continued to show that he’s not afraid of the leagues tough guys. He held his own against Flyer enforcer Dan Carcillo. I did see some of what we saw at the end of last season tonight. ..he’s going to need to win more battles for loose pucks.
That’s it for tonight…