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Game one media scrums with the Maple Leafs

This is not a chance to see who has beard game already. This is a serious examination of hockey clichés.

Washington Capitals v Toronto Maple Leafs - Game Six Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images

Patrick Marleau has done all of this before (and he will do it again).

First up, the dad beard is doing all right, and he wants everyone to play right. The grade one reader in Saskatchewan is all about a kid who learns to play the right way.

Next is Auston Matthews:

His cliché and beard game is coming on, although he gives a good game analysis near the end of this one. He seems very comfortable in this role of voice of the team. Step back and this scrum looks like this:

Shockingly, our early beard game leader seems to be a certain team centre.

Nazem Kadri always has interesting things to say about the game plan, and he can also talk about confidence and preparation with the best of them. He also gives a very sincere review of the NHL and the way they’ve cleaned up dangerous hits in the game. I’m not sure how much I agree with him on that, but it is true there are a lot less of them.

Morgan Rielly is experienced at this playoff thing now, and he talks about that, while showing off his beard game, which isn’t too bad. At least relative to this next defender:

Travis Dermott says, “From here on out, every game is the biggest game I’ve played in my life.” He is so right about that, and in the right light there’s something there for a beard. I think his playoff partner can cover that job on the pairing as easily as Dermott covers the assignment of moving up ice with the puck.

Next up is the wily veteran Mitch Marner talking about his playoff experience:

And last is Mike Babcock.

Babcock is not expecting undisciplined penalties. And he’s got the same view as the rest of us, Boston has one superb line, and the Leafs have three excellent lines. This is the first time in any of these scrums in years, I’ve heard a reported just bullhorn his way over top of someone else’s question. Ah, playoffs, when the egos are unleashed.