With the quarter mile post of the National Hockey League season fast approaching, the Maple Leafs are 7-2 in the friendly confines of the Air Canada Centre after pounding the Florida Panthers 6-1 on Thursday night.
While the offense has been rolling, it's been doing so without much help from the power play.
"We are comfortable here", Brown said. Corrado is clearly not a favorite of the head coach (playing just once in 18 games) but defense is a position where the organization has little depth. "It's only up from here". And yes, had Habs goalie Carey Price not performed like, well, Carey Price, this result might have been a more positive one for this young plucky team.
At the Air Canada Centre, just a subway ride from where he grew up (attending Michael Power/St. Joseph High School), Brown had a breakout night with a four-point night in the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-1 win over the visiting Florida Panthers. Toronto F Connor Carrick returned to the lineup Thursday after sitting out two games.
"We're happy with the way we battled at the end", Toronto defenseman Morgan Reilly said.
"I thought we did a good job of staying behind them and taking away that speed a bit".
Maple Leafs coach Mike Babcock said he wants Carrick to use his strong skating and skills instead of trying to be physical. He can play with or without the puck. The goal was the third of the season for Ekblad and had assists on it from Jared McCann and Denis Malgin.
"It doesn't surprise me [how good Brown is]", Marner said. I just didn't like the way a lot of our guys played. "Going forward he's going to keep being the same player". A former fourth round pick of the Leafs, he played more than 200 games with the club over six seasons.
Van Riemsdyk, coming off his first hat trick as a Leaf on Tuesday, got the Leafs' fifth goal late in the second.
"We didn't start the periods the way we'd like". "I knew I had pressure behind me and forced on my backhand, but I knew if I could get to my forehand I had a pretty good chance of scoring on it. You see the guys working hard, and it's good to see different guys getting on the score sheet". Sure enough, that was on display later in the second period when William Nylander ripped a one-timer of a Leo Komarov feed for a power play goal that narrowed the Canadiens' lead to 2-1. The Maple Leafs will face the league's top team while on an offensive roll.
Even so, Babcock understands that these road woes must be overcome if these Leafs are to take the next step in their development. "As we learn to play better without the puck and do less silly things with the puck, we'll win more on the road".
Radulov played a major role in the Canadiens' 2-1 home victory over Toronto on October 29, setting up both goals - including defenseman Shea Weber's victor at 7:24 of the third period.
The Quiz: Will Marner be better than Matthews?
Toronto has about a dozen players suiting up in the National Hockey League.