Chris Stewart lit the lamp twice for the Sabres in the 1st but Toronto took the lead going into the 2nd with goals from Roman Polak, Tyler Bozak, and Dion Phaneuf. The action didn’t slow down in the 2nd as the Leafs tried to solidify their lead when Leo Komarov and David Clarkson each notched their first goals of the preseason. Jake McCabe tried to close the gap for Buffalo but the Leafs lead 5-3 going into the 3rd. Josh Leivo scored for the buds and Cody McCormick put one more past Reimer ending the game 6-4 for the blue and white. Reimer made 34 saves for the Leafs win.
Toronto Maple Leafs: 6
Buffalo Sabres: 4
Senators vs. Leafs: Canadian Tire Centre
After a scoreless first period the Sens got a pair from Bobby Ryan and Matt Puempel. Leafs put one up on the board from Sam Carrick before the end of the 2nd and went into the 3rd 2-1 Ottawa. Bobby Ryan got his 2nd of the game and the Leafs tried to make a come back at the end of the 3rd with a goal from Morgan Rielly, but it wasn’t enough and the Sens take the win.
Ottawa Senators: 3
Toronto Maple Leafs: 2
Leafs vs. Senators: Air Canada Centre
Nazem Kadri opened up the scoring for the Leafs and posted the only goal in the 1st. Jake Gardiner put the Leafs ahead by 2 at the beginning of the 2nd but the Sens answered with a goal by Shane Prince and went into the 3rd 2-1 Leafs. James van Riemsdyk posted another for the Leafs and gave them a 3 goal lead. The Senators managed to tie it up in the 3rd with a short handed goal by Alex Chiasson and another from Ryan Dzingel. Neither team could find the back of the net in overtime and the game went to a shootout. Connor Brown put one in for the Leafs but they fell short after Alex Chiasson got his 2nd of the night, and Milan Michalek secured the Senators win.
Toronto Maple Leafs: 3
Ottawa Senators: 4
I haven’t covered the Leafs new office hires so lets take a look at the new faces upstairs.
A month ago the Leafs organization announced that Kyle Dubas will be coming on as Assistant General Manager. Since the season ended The Maple Leafs have been undergoing a restructure focusing on their analytics department.
Brandon Pridham will also take his new position as assistant to the GM. Pridham will assist in taking on salary cap analysis, contract negotiations and collective bargaining agreement interpretation for the team.
During the restructure the Leafs said goodbye to Vice President of Hockey Operations Dave Poulin and Vice President and Assistant General Manager Claude Loiselle.
With all the moves that have been made so far it looks like a lot of decisions will come from looking at player stats this year in the Leafs new approach. Of course we’ll have to wait till October when the skates hit the ice to see how much a role analytics will play this season.