Jonas Gustavsson shuts out the Dallas Stars in the shootout, and the Leafs manage to pick up another two points in the standings. After losing 5 of 6, Toronto has turned around and managed to win 3 of 4. The still Reimer-less Leafs will wrap up their current road trip tomorrow in Anaheim before a home & home with the Boston Bruins next week. The Leafs, who remain the youngest team in the NHL, have gotten surprising help from the greenest kids of the bunch. Joe Colborne has 3 points in 4 games. Jake Gardiner is averaging over 20 minutes per game this month, including a team high 28:34 last night (the Leafs relied on only four defensemen after Carl Gunnarsson left due to injury). Gardiner's play has even earned him a new nickname from some teammates. James Mirtle has the story:
"Everyone calls him Silver Stick," Schenn said. "When you get to 1,000 games [in the NHL], you get a silver stick. He just acts like he’s got 1,000 under him already."All kidding aside, at this rate, Gardiner looks like a player who could get to that 1,000th game...
...While his skating ability is what immediately stands out – and was a big reason he was drafted by the Anaheim Ducks 17th overall in 2008 – his "cool under fire" persona means he’s rarely panicked even in key situations. As a result, he’s picked up more minutes on special teams of late – including four-plus minutes on the penalty kill in two recent games – and is one of the NHL leaders in minutes played by a rookie.
More links after the jump...
Quick hits from MLHS
New thoughts from Vintage Leaf Memories
Better than anyone expected. But you should checkout this piece from the Leafs Nation anyways
Recap from Jeff over at Marlies HQ