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Wednesday FTB: Mitch Marner is your NHL Player of the Month

and some special games this month

Toronto Maple Leafs v Detroit Red Wings
DETROIT, MI - FEBRUARY 26: Mitchell Marner #16of the Toronto Maple Leafs poses for a photo after scoring four goals against the Detroit Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena on February 26, 2022 in Detroit, Michigan.
Photo by Steve Keogh/NHLI via Getty Images

Mitch Marner concluded an inferno month of ice hockey the NHL leader in points, goals, assists, and shots, earning him the First Star of the Month in the league for the Toronto Maple Leafs. Included in his leading nine goals, 14 assists, and 53 shots in only 12 games was his four-goal game against the Detroit Red Wings. And remember when Marner scored 10 goals in eight consecutive games? All but two of those games in that streak were in February. That’s pretty impressive.

Marner didn’t do it alone, as Auston Matthews arguably should’ve also been in the top three, scoring nine goals himself, 10 assists, lead the league in shot attempts, and finished second in scoring chances for the month. He also was the Star of the Week this past week ending on Sunday. Michael Bunting was the third Musketeer, scoring five points in the same Detroit game and being an overall excellent complimentary player with seven goals in the month. The Leafs first line was the number one line in the league in February, their combined 25 goals in 12 games was the most of any trio in the league this month.

We’re going to get some AreTnas and Toronto St. Pats jerseys this month, along with possible a Black and Gold “Next Gen” jersey. the AreTnas jersey will be used for the outdoor game Toronto will play against Buffalo in Hamilton. The St. Pats jersey will likely be for St. Patrick’s Day this year in mid-March, and the Leafs Next Gen game doesn’t have a date set yet, but there are nine home games to choose from.

Hate me all you want but I actually like the St. Pats jersey. They’re different and green used to be my favourite colour, especially when Mats Sundin was wearing it.

Cap Friendly with a friendly salary cap PSA. Teams are allowed to sign ELC contracts that start next season starting yesterday, so expect to see some of that business get done before the deadline. Signing rights for defenders Axel Rindell and Ryan O’Connell are expiring this spring/summer. Rindell is a shooting defender in the Liiga, while O’Connell is in his senior year in the NCAA. I would be a little shocked if they got contracts

Besides them, Roni Hirvonen, Topi Niemela, and Nick Abruzzese are on the radar, if they’re not traded at the deadline. If they’re in play, maybe a shiny new contract can be a boost for their value.

This weekend on Sportsnet One, watch the rematch between Canada and the USA, hosted by the Pittsburgh Penguins. Young Sarah Fillier might not be playing as she’s still in college and not allowed to be considered a pro. I guess I’ll have to fawn over Sarah Nurse instead!

Equipment giant CCM have stopped using Alex Ovechkin and other Russian players in their global marketing campaigns. This doesn’t say Ovechkin and other Russian players are dropped from the manufacturer, but they won’t be seen in campaigns for the foreseeable future.

In case you missed this quote, wow, from a former Winnipeg Free Press columnist. While most seem to point the finger right at Evander Kane, it’s clearly not just him. Paul Stastny is clearly one, but I’d be looking at the whole Jets (mediocre) leadership from Wheeler, Scheifele, and Hellebuyck at least. They’re the ones who are still there with Stastny.