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Saturday’s FTB and Traverse City update

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Nick Robertson shines in the first game of the prospects tournament, but who is that defenceman?

2019 NHL Draft - Portraits Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

Good morning, everyone, happy Saturday.

We have fake hockey to obsess over this weekend. Last night, the first day of the Traverse City tournament took place with all the teams in action. In the only game that matters (it doesn’t matter) the Leafs beat the Blues on the little rink where you get to watch the game through the mesh.

Rule number one of prospect tournaments is that the goalie is a victim, not a perp. Ian Scott got the start (Joe Woll is out with a busted finger) and he played well after some early troubles with the Blues.

Rule number two is the ex-Leaf will score, and Dakota Joshua took a sweet pass from Nick Robertson and put it past Ian Scott. Joshua is with the Blues now, unfortunately.

The Leafs looked rusty and out of sorts at first, but they visibly pulled it together after going down 2-1 in the first.

By the end of the second, they were dominating in shots on goal, and had made the score 6-2. That top line of Semyon Der-Arguchintsev with Nick Robertson and Egor Korshkov was really cooking, although Korshkov still looks like no one is ever where he expects them to be to take a pass. Not this time, though:

They were most of the top PP unit as well, along with Teemu Kivihalme on the blueline. He really impressed me. He’s a pro, he plays like a pro.

Trey Bradley, on an AHL deal and new to the Marlies late last year, was very impressive as the skill guy on the line with big Hudson Elynuik and bigger Justin Brazeau. That line was very difficult for St. Louis to handle, but the skill gap between them and line one was obvious.

The third period had the look of a game where realization had set in that this wasn’t just a quick scrimmage and then off to the hotel to go back to making smart ass remarks on other guy’s instagram posts. They gave Scott a taste of what it’s like to be the Marlies goalie when the team stops efforting to get out of the zone.

Mikhail Abarmov, who looked a little meh in the first part of the game, got some PP time with Korshkov and Der-Arguchintsev, and he clicked with those two (unsurprisingly). He came on a bit late in the third period, and looked like a guy who would score a lot of goals in junior.

The biggest question for me what why Jesper Lindgren looked very not on the ball. These games are always a bit hit and miss, though, coming at an awkward time in some player’s training sessions.

Final score was 6-2, and Scott was good, but not pressed hard.

One bit of news: Todd Crocker reported that Zach Bouthillier has been added to the Leafs roster with Woll out.

The Game in Six if you want more.

The game today is at 3 p.m. against Chicago, and will be in the “through the mesh” rink again. On Monday, the game is in the big rink, with better cameras, but with Red Wings commentary.

What we I wrote:

Why did the Maple Leafs pick Cody Ceci over Jake Gardiner? - Pension Plan Puppets
If you liked all those clever schemes that meant they were going to magic away Ceci’s contract to sign Gardiner, you’re likely upset now.

Other news:

Noooooooooooooooo!

These guys are still talking: