Nice win boys, that was one hell of a game. I don't think anyone expected a 5 goal explosion over 5 minutes and 22 seconds, but we'll happily take it. It's a little worrying that the Buds are developing a habit for coming back from a deficit, but this is a young team and now is the time to learn these sorts of lessons.
Captain Ron has been living up to the hype of being able to develop young talent and rule with an iron fist, and a few weeks into the season I like what I see. He's had the balls to bench underachievers like Blake and Stajan, and it has had a positive impact in most cases. Stajan has been working harder and is not shying away from the front of the net, and even Blake is skating harder in recent games (though I still think that we should trade him for a pick and a reach-around). This team isn't going to be led from the doldrums by some Saviour superstar player, it's going to happen because we've got a young talented core that doesn't EVER quit.
Luke Schenn - Toronto's new favorite son has continued to impress. Time will tell if he can keep up with the rigors of the brutal NHL schedule, but he currently looks like he belongs. He's made a few rookie mistakes, but this is the perfect opportunity for him to get those out of his system with little to no expectations (for the team as a whole). Wilson seems to have his pulse on the situation, so we'll have to trust him to protect Schenn from getting Dan Blackburned (where a player gets burnt out early in his career by getting destroyed night in, and night out).
John Mitchell - This kid has been incredible over the last few games. The 2 goals last night were a great reward for how hard Oakville boy Mitchell has been working this season. This kid just loves to play hockey, and works his ass off every time his skates touch the ice. He's all heart, with what seems to be the talent to back it up. It's nice to see players on the ice this season who really want to be there.
As Leaf fans we've had to accept douche bags like Khristich and Berezin who were more concerned with their personal stats and pay cheques than with bleeding Blue and giving it everything they've got on a nightly basis. A strong young Canadian core of Schenn, Stajan, Steen, Moore, and Mitchell have the future looking brighter than it has in years. If Carlo can find his game, and Pogge can finally make the jump to the next level then I think we're getting closer. It's still early to tell how this core will develop, but last night was another indicator that we're moving in the right direction.
Remember the days with Dougie or Wendal put their bodies on the line to such a degree that you could see them wince? I do, and I hope that they are back.
And on the topic of things that make me wince, please see below.