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Preseason Postgame: Try Not to Overreact Edition

Tavares will clearly score a billion goals for the Leafs this season. He’s pretty good at this hockey thing though.

In Lucan, ON the Toronto Maple Leafs played the Ottawa Senators in their first preseason game tonight. It was a messy, sloppy, unorganized mess but it was fun to see our club play some (meaningless) hockey again.

First Period

Well, clearly the Sens are better than the Leafs since they scored within a minute of the game starting.

A pretty brutal giveaway for Kadri and a mixup by Dermott leads to a leaky puck right in front of the net for Ryan Dzingel.

This will no doubt be the highlight of the whole season for Sens fans. If the Sens only have one highlight this season, the Leafs are certainly going to have a lot more since John Tavares is already scoring for his new club.

Those hands. No wonder Babcock felt comfortable putting Tavares as the netfront presence with van Riemsdyk gone. His first as a Toronto Maple Leaf and it is a damn pretty one. Top corner and no chance for the poor noname Ottawa goaltender.

While every Leafs fan is still dreaming about the upcoming hell that Tavares will create for the opposing teams, the young Swedish tank Andreas Borgman scored.

A nice little assist on the rush from sure-thing Marlie Emerson Clark sets up blueline-hopeful Borgman to redirect the puck just past the goalie’s blocker.

Since the first second of this game, it has felt extremely loose and flowing – so loose that it has led to some creative plays by Curtis McElhinney.

This first period was wild. Mostly from the Leafs of course, since y’know the Ottawa Senators are really, really bad.

Second Period

As with most preseason games, fans and media members alike get fixated on some players that have a very noticeable game. That is why I’m touting the second period of this game as the Emerson Clark Coming Out Party. Battling for the puck and seemingly doing every little thing in the right way.

The highlight of this period was probably Mitch Marner on the penalty kill. He created the best scoring chance of either team while shorthanded – so he should probably get a decent look on that special team unit.

Third Period

Before the halfway point in the period, Tavares scored his second of the game and the easiest goal in his professional career.

Scoring while falling might be a good symbol for his time with the Islanders.

I guess Tavares won’t be the only one scoring goals in the partnership with Marner this season – Marner scored later in the period off of a Tavares assist. It feels nice.

I think both Marner and Tavares can stick with the Leafs this year.

The Stats

Leafs

Mitch Marner 1G, 2A / John Tavares 2G, 1A / Trevor Moore 1A / Emerson Clark 1A

Andreas Borgman 1G / Justin Holl 1A

Curtis McElhinney – 12/13 saves (.923sv%) / Garret Sparks – 22/22 saves (1.000sv%)

Sens

Ryan Dzingel 1G / Matt Duchene 1A

Mike Condon 18/20 saves (.900sv%) / Marcus Hogberg – 8/10 saves (.800sv%)


Up next the other half of the squad is in Ottawa to face the other half of the Senators. I actually can’t name any Senator that wasn’t playing tonight, so they’ll hopefully have some players to play against.

Puck drop at 7:30 pm EST.

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