Maple Leafs Opening Day Lineup
|James van Riemsdyk||Nazem Kadri||Zach Hyman|
|Milan Michalek||Tyler Bozak||Mitch Marner|
|Leo Komarov||Auston Matthews||William Nylander|
|Matt Martin||Brooks Laich||Connor Brown|
|Morgan Rielly||Nikita Zaitsev|
|Jake Gardiner||Roman Polak|
|Matt Hunwick||Connor Carrick|
|Martin Marincin||Frank Corrado|
Getting a Shot
Mitch Marner. The season’s training camp did not mean more to a player than it does to Mitch Marner. So far, he has impressed. In each of the pre-season games that Marner has played in he has been extremely noticeable. It seems more and more likely that Marner will at least start the year with the Maple Leafs, giving him 10 games to show that he belongs.
Connor Brown. Brown impressed Babcock in his short stint with the Maple Leafs last year. He was one of the players that Babcock declared ‘NHL ready’ and for some reason, finds a way to have success wherever he plays.
Zach Hyman. You already know that Hyman is going to one of Babcock’s favourites. He has pointed towards his work ethic multiple times since getting a chance with the Maple Leafs. Like Brown, Hyman can play up and down the lineup.
Connor Carrick. After playing some games with the Maple Leafs last year, Carrick went on a tear during the AHL playoffs. He lead all AHL players with 18 points in 15 games. He has continued that play into training camp and is a strong choice to make the opening day roster.
Missed the Cut
Nikita Soshnikov. He played well during his time with the Maple Leafs last year. Babcock mentioned that he thought that Soshnikov, Hyman and Brown were all NHL ready players. Unfortunately, Soshnikov has been injured for the duration of training camp. This may just be enough for him to start with the Marlies but do not be surprised to see him up with the big club later in the year. (Confirmed today that he will be starting with the Marlies)
Nikita Soshnikov was shut down by the #leafs because of a hamstring problem. He’ll start the season in the AHL, per Mike Babcock.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) October 3, 2016
Josh Leivo. With a new young crop of prospects making their way through the Maple Leafs system, Leivo may have seen his last chance to make the Maple Leafs slip by (Note: Not waiver exempt).
Featured Image: Aaron Bell/OHL Images (Sportsnet.ca)