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From the Branches: A fine morning to laugh at the Habs

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Preseason chugs merrily along.

NHL: Preseason-Montreal Canadiens at Toronto Maple Leafs Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

It’s always nice to wake up the morning after a Maple Leafs win. (I know it’s preseason, but they still beat the Habs! It still counts!). Last night, we got to see a William Nylander snipe, an Auston Matthews hat trick, and some old guy scored, I guess. Calle Rosén nearly got decapitated by a wayward skate blade, too. For a full rundown of last night’s excitement, and not just the bits I noticed while multitasking, read Seldo’s recap here.

Off the ice, an interesting moment in last night’s game was this intermission panel discussing the Penguins’ White House visit.

If most intermission segments were this thoughtful and well-articulated, I wouldn’t mute them as a matter of course. I’m pleasantly surprised.

On to your morning links!

ICYMI

Malibag: Curtis McElhinney and Bad Led Zeppelin Imitators - Pension Plan Puppets
All that and more in this edition of the mailbag.

Toronto Marlies training camp invite list is out - Pension Plan Puppets
Some obvious names, some interesting ones.

Stuff We Didn’t Write

NHL director of officiating: Players will adapt to rule changes - Sportsnet.ca
NHL director of officiating Stephen Walkom believes that players will learn to adapt to the new slashing and faceoff rules. He also feels that these enforced laws will protect the league's star players from getting injured more often.

Canadian hockey teams open Olympic gold medal defences versus Switzerland, Russia | Toronto Star
The International Ice Hockey Federation released the ice hockey schedules and matchups Monday for the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea — the first Winter Games that will not feature NHL players since 1994.

Actions speak louder: How the Pittsburgh Penguins prove that hockey really isn't for everyone - Raw Charge
Hockey is for people with money and/or access to tons of cheaper local rinks. The NHL is also 93% white. I didn’t have any white friends with money that played hockey until I went to Yale.

Leafs’ salary cap could hinge on exam of Joffrey Lupul | Toronto Star
The Breakaway Blog returns with a closer look at the process Lupul faces and what it means to the Maple Leafs.