It’s really crazy to think just how drastically the perception of Garret Sparks has declined over the course of a calendar year.
June 14th 2018, and Sparks is hoisting a Calder Cup to cap off an extraordinary 2017-2018 campaign in which he was crowned as the league’s best goaltender and solidified himself as an NHL-calibre goalie. Sparks was bunched in with that group of players who were inevitably bound to graduate on from the Marlies – the Travis Dermott’s, the Justin Holl’s, the Andreas Johnsson’s, etc – and it seemed like a no-brainer that he was ready for the next stage.
At the time, it seemed like there was nowhere else but up for Sparks, a goaltender who paid his dues and battled through some sticky situations early in his career.
One year later.
June 14th 2019, and hockey insider Pierre Lebrun reports that the Leafs are shopping Sparks after the 25-year-old netminder struggled throughout the 2018-2019 season (.902 SV%, 3.15 GAA, 20 NHL GP) and, as a result, was essentially exiled from the group and stripped of his understudy duties at the tail-end of the regular season.
Everything in Leafs nation is thrusted under a microscope and, with that said, many …
Author: Jacob Stoller / The Leafs Nation