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Anthony Stolarz jokes about ex-teammate Sergei Bobrovsky: ‘He’s on the dark side now’

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Photo credit:Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Arun Srinivasan
10 days ago
One of the perils of free agency is that teammates become quick foes and Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Anthony Stolarz had a lighthearted take one of his mentors during his introductory media availability.
Stolarz joined the Maple Leafs on a two-year, $2.5 million deal which could quickly become one of the steals of the summer. The 30-year-old will work in tandem with Joseph Woll, while Matt Murray is positioned as the third-stringer entering next fall.
Coming off a Stanley Cup victory with the Florida Panthers, Stolarz got a front-now seat to marvel at the heroics of Panthers superstar Sergei Bobrovsky, who finished second in the Conn Smythe Trophy voting this season — and from some corners of the internet, ought to have been awarded the playoff MVP award. Stolarz isn’t going to be taking a trip down memory lane immediately.
“He was one helluva teammate. I’m going to miss him but, at the end of the day, he’s on the dark side now and I’m actually looking forward to playing him next year,” Stolarz said of Bobrovsky via TSN’s Mark Masters.
This ought to play well as the Panthers and Maple Leafs will continue to have a heated relationship as Atlantic Division combatants. Florida eliminated in Toronto in five games during its second-round series two seasons ago and have since usurped the Maple Leafs not only as a divisional rival, but as the standard bearer across the Eastern Conference.
Stolarz is evidently welcoming the new challenge.
“I’m looking forward to the opportunity,” Stolarz said via Masters. “I’m excited. I’ve heard nothing but great things about the fan base. It’s a very hungry and passionate fan base. I’m looking forward to getting to Toronto and meeting everyone and getting things going.”
Last season, Stolarz recorded a 16-7-2 mark with a .925 save percentage, while saving 20.1 goals above expected in all situations via MoneyPuck, the third-best total in the league — only Connor Hellebuyck and Thatcher Demko fared better. It’s a low-risk, high-reward scenario for the Maple Leafs and by all means, it appears that he’s looking forward to the potential to elevate into a bona fide star in Toronto.

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