The Toronto Maple Leafs are off to a great start, but their wins haven’t all been pretty. In fact they lead the league in giveaways and had 21 last night alone.
Still, they earned a 6-5 overtime victory against the Edmonton Oilers in a back-and-forth contest.
“My teeth are going to be ground down by the 20-game mark, the way we were exchanging chances and mistakes,” Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle said. “But hey, that’s hockey early in the season.”
If this trend continues, it might come back to haunt Toronto, but there are certainly plenty of positives to take away from their hot start. The team, even with David Clarkson just halfway through his 10-game suspension, has enjoyed a balanced attack. Five different players are averaging a point-per-game and 16 Leafs have already recorded a point.
Goaltender Jonathan Bernier was obviously beaten regularly on Saturday, but he’s been great too for the most part. As a result, the Toronto Maple Leafs are the surprising leaders of the Atlantic Division with a 5-1-0 record.
They’ll look to continue that on Tuesday against Minnesota and, for Carlyle’s sake, hopefully play a less dramatic game.
The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.
It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. For one thing, Torres is a repeat offender who once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.
Freddie, who is the older of the two at 23, is a center that excelled offensively in the OHL and has chipped in at the AHL level. However, he has just one point in 29 contests with Colorado and the San Jose Sharks.
This is obviously not a big trade, but perhaps Freddie will eventually become a solid member of the Flames’ supporting cast. If nothing else, it didn’t cost Calgary much to reunite the brothers. The duo previously played together with the Niagara IceDogs.
"I’m looking forward to being in the same organization as my brother now and seeing what happens." – Dougie Hamilton on the trade