This is an exciting time for Canadian hockey. Right now there is a Canadian team first in the West, the Edmonton Oilers, and a Canadian team first in the East, the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The Maple Leafs at 9-3-1, have looked dominant in their last two road games– a 5-3 win over New Jersey and a 4-1 win over Columbus.
Last night in Ohio, the Maple Leafs got a stellar effort from Spruce Grove native Ben Scrivens, who was making his NHL debut. Scrivens, who suited up for the Maple Leafs to give Jonas Gustavsson a night off, made 38 saves on 39 shots.
Scrivens, who signed with the Maple Leafs on April 28, won the Ken Dryden Award as the top goaltender in the East Coast Athletic Conference while with Cornell University in 2010. He is getting time with the big club because of a head injury to James Reimer.
Offensively, the Maple Leafs have received great production from Phil Kessel, who leads the NHL with 10 goals, 21 points and a +10 to begin the season. The restricted free agent signing of Kessel by Maple Leafs’ General Manager Brian Burke doesn’t look so bad now, even though Tyler Seguin does lead the Boston Bruins in scoring. Another offensive spark plug for the Maple Leafs has been the play of former Edmonton Oiler Joffrey Lupul, who scored a hat trick on Martin Brodeur Wednesday night. Lupul now has 8 goals and 8 assists, and leads the NHL in +/- with Kessel at +10.
This may be a magical hockey season. Do you think we could just see a Toronto-Edmonton Stanley Cup Final? After the first month of the season, there is reason to believe of the possibility.