December 01 2015 01:39PM
Photo Credit: Christian Bonin / TSGPhoto.com
Garret Sparks may have been the story of last night's Leafs game, but he's been making waves for quite some time before his NHL debut. For example, did you know that he spent the entirety of November ripping up the league below? The American Hockey League noticed, and today declared him their Goaltender of the Month for November.
December 01 2015 12:23PM
It looks like Joffrey Lupul's nagging ailment needs a little moe than temporary rest. At least, that's what today's roster decisions would have you believe, as the Toronto Maple Leafs have placed him on injured reserve for the duration of their Western Conference road trip. To fill the void, they've also called up Richard Clune from the Toronto Marlies.
December 01 2015 10:30AM
After watching William Nylander wow the crowds for Team Sweden at the 2015 World Junior Championship - and battling mixed feels over the chemistry of Max Domi and Anthony Duclair for Team Canada, as neither truly benefit us in the long run - Leafs fans are long overdue for their World Juniors superstar to take home a gold medal.
After the unfairness of watching Connor Brown get snubbed by Team Canada in 2014, after watching Morgan Rielly fail to take home gold in 2013, after watching Freddie Gauthier only register one assist at last year's games... it's about time Toronto has a real shot of watching a prospect blow the world away.
This year? They'll get to hopefully watch two.
November 30 2015 11:34PM
When this game was identified on the schedule a couple of months ago, Leafs fans knew it was going to be a special night. It was circled as one of the must-see's of the year. It was going to be the night of a young rookie, developed by Toronto, playing his guts out in front of 18000 fans at the Air Canada Centre.
Saying all this, I'm actually referring to Newmarket-born Leafs fan Connor McDavid, who was drafted by the Oilers and currently plays for the Injured Reserve. It was a player on the other team that was the expected attraction, but in hindsight, I'm sure the crowd preferred what they got from tonight's 3-0 Leafs victory instead.
November 30 2015 09:03PM
Photo Credit: Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY Sports
At this point last year, Garret Sparks was in the ECHL, putting up extremely solid numbers for the Orlando Solar Bears while the Toronto Marlies slowly inched their way out of the AHL's gutter. It wasn't the pathway he had planned to take at the start of the season and the then 21-year-old was starting to second guess his place in pro hockey.
In the twelve months that ensued, he rebuilt his technique, changed his attitude, spent extra time in the gym, and set his ambitions on earning his way back up the ranks. Which brought him tonight; another unplanned appearance on another team within the organization, but this time, he was looking upward.
Sparks took total advantage of the opportunity, becoming the first Leafs goalie to post a shutout in his NHL debut.