We already wrote last week about Joe Colborne’s attempt to make the Toronto Maple Leafs and prove he belongs in the NHL. But upon further review, one thing that was missing from our analysis was a good bus analogy.
For that, let’s turn to Leafs head coach Randy Carlyle.
“The way this thing works is the bus only goes by so many times,” Carlyle said Thursday, per the National Post. “And you want to be on that bus. That was the way it was when I started and it’s the way it’s been for years.
“You’re only going to get so many opportunities and who knows when the last one is? I’m not saying that’s happening, but the bus is going by and it’s another opportunity so you want to be on it. That’s the simplest form that I can put it. If you want a ride downtown you get on the bus.”
Colborne, 23, is no longer exempt from waivers, so he’d need to clear them if the Leafs chose to send him back down to the AHL. (Which we suppose is a bit like getting on a bus, except you’re not sure where it’s going.)
Colborne should have a great chance to show his stuff tonight in Ottawa, as he’s expected to center wingers David Clarkson and James van Riemsdyk versus the Senators.
Here is a picture of a bus:
Well, the NHL’s two new initiatives for ’15-16 seem to be going swimmingly.
Not long after Ottawa successfully made the second-ever coach’s challenge, fans got their first look at 3-on-3 overtime.
And what a look it was.
In the span of 137 seconds, the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers combined for eight shots on goal, a few breakaways, some tremendous saves — including one on a penalty shot — and, finally, Jason Garrison‘s game-winning goal on a breakaway from center, giving the Bolts a 3-2 win.
It was, in a word, fun.
Lots of fun.
A quick sampling of reviews:
Of course, not everybody was a fan:
Now, to temper things a bit — this was the first time we’ve seen 3-on-3 with something on the line, so there was a novelty factor at play. There’s also no guaranteeing future OT sessions will be as exciting as this.
But none of that takes away from the fact 3-on-3 made for appointment viewing, and immense entertainment value. The prospect of future games like this? That’s pretty exciting.
Didn’t take long for Alex Burmistrov to make his presence felt — though not in a good way.
Burmistrov, playing in his first game for the Jets after a two-year stint in Russia, delivered a questionable elbow to the head of Boston’s Patrice Bergeron late in the first period of Thursday’s season-opener:
Burmistrov received a two-minute minor for an illegal check to the head, while Bergeron received a matching minor for roughing (retaliating for the elbow, specifically).
The Bruins went into the intermission leading 1-0, and have yet to update Bergeron’s status.
Update: Bergeron stayed in the game, but B’s head coach Claude Julien was none too pleased with the hit. Following the game, he called for the NHL’s Department of Player Safety to look at it…