Morning Mashup: It Begins


Photo: David Cooper/Toronto Star

The summer-long cork on Leafs hockey has been popped open, and the conclusion of the first preseason game (a 4-2 Leafs win over the Senators) has unleashed the expected outpouring of reactions, excitement, and media looking for a controversial storyline.  There is the unsurprising debate on line arrangements and battles for the few roster spots, but Toronto’s newspapers are not known to leave any contentious point unexplored.  Early into this iteration of the Maple Leafs season, one such point is the future of Jonas Gustavsson.

Whether it be due to the rising stock of Ben Scrivens, or purely for the sake of finding something to talk about, there are a few articles out there that discuss the uncertainty of the Monster’s role with this club.  The big Swede has talent and a fiery competitiveness that will eventually see him to NHL success in my books.  I also see the combined pressure of Scrivens and Reimer giving Gustavsson the motivation he needs to find his legs, although he will need some time to get there.  But it remains to be seen whether he can settle down into the level of goaltending consistency that is so dependent on mental focus and fortitude.  One thing is for sure: this storyline will be supplemented and replaced by a multitude of others as the Leafs trot out a different roster tonight against the Philadelphia Flyers (feat. Kessel vs. Kessel + Schenn vs. Schenn?).