Woll breaks record, Abruzzese clicking, Johnstone’s first, and Toronto’s All-Stars: Marlies Weekly

Woll breaks record, Abruzzese clicking, Johnstone’s first, and Toronto’s All-Stars: Marlies Weekly

Another week, another stretch of games won by the Marlies in what has been a remarkable season to date.
Toronto had four games scheduled throughout the last week, though they only played three. On Friday night, while the Marlies were facing the Manitoba Moose, a fan experienced a medical emergency at the end of the first period.
Both teams — and the AHL — agreed to suspend the game when it was 1-1 after the opening frame. The AHL said the game will be completed at a later date though they haven’t specified when that might be just yet.
The other three games that the Marlies played this week went very well. Matter of fact, Toronto won every one of them.
They defeated Laval 4-2 last Sunday, then beat the Manitoba Moose 3-2 on Wednesday, and after their game was suspended on Friday, the Marlies bussed to Rochester and won their game against the Amerks on Saturday, 7-5.
Joseph Woll played in all three wins this week and has since broke the Marlies record for most consecutive wins in a season. And after defeating Rochester on Saturday, the 24-year-old is now undefeated in 10-straight games this season while holding a .926 save percentage.
READ MORE: ‘He’s never out of the play’: Joseph Woll ties Marlies record and could break it w …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

It’s the midseason grades edition of The Leafs Power Rankin’s

It’s the midseason grades edition of The Leafs Power Rankin’s

It’s a new month and another chance to rank the Leafs players. It is also very close to the midpoint of the season and that warrants assigning some grades to the Leaf players as well. Rather than doing two separate articles to accomplish the same thing, we’ll blend them into one time saving piece that cuts our potential pageviews in half. Take that network fat cats.
Grading players is somewhat tricky. Are we grading them to what we expect of them or are we grading them to where they compare to players around the league? Is Pontus Holmberg a B player because he’s come in and grabbed an NHL job, or is he a C- player because he’s a decent fourth line center? Unfortunately for Holmberg, I feel the latter grading system is far more useful, but I will include whether or not players are meeting, exceeding, or failing to meet expectations as well.
The previous Power Rankin’s can be found here.
1. William Nylander (up from 5th) 
Grade: A, exceeding expectations
There are plenty of supporters of William Nylander around Leafs Nation, but I think it is still safe to say that no one saw him as the team goals and points leader at the first week in January.
As the Leafs exited the playoffs last year, Nylander more than any other player seemed committed to finding the next level in his gam …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

‘I hate losing more than I like winning’: Keith Petruzzelli’s contract with the Leafs and the moment he will remember forever

‘I hate losing more than I like winning’: Keith Petruzzelli’s contract with the Leafs and the moment he will remember forever

It was just another game in Belleville. Except this time, it wasn’t.
After spending a year bouncing back and forth between the Newfoundland Growlers and Toronto Marlies, Keith Petruzzelli was ready to enter this season in one spot. The AHL.
Little did he know what was coming his way.
Erik Kallgren and Petruzzelli began the season as the Marlies’ two main goaltenders. It was expected that Kallgren would get more of the games, but they would be pretty split between the two.
That was quickly short-lived though as Kallgren — 27-and-a-half minutes into the first game of the season — was crashed into by Rochester’s Ethan Prow.

Erik Kallgren gets run over by Ethan Prow and has since gone to the dressing room.
Dylan Ferguson is coming into the net for the #Marlies. pic.twitter.com/iy9P5loRL6
— Nick Barden (@nickbarden) October 15, 2022

Toronto’s third goaltender at the time, Dylan Ferguson, came in to replace the 26-year-old goaltender for the remainder of the game. Luckily, Kallgren would be okay.
The following day, Matt Murray took the ice at Scotiabank Arena for the Maple Leafs’ morning skate. Except he left 10 minutes after he stepped onto the ice surface with what we now know was a groin injury.
Toronto needed another goaltender for the game that night and the coming weeks, so that meant Kallgren would head to the NHL. In turn, that also indicated that Petruzzelli would be the Marlies’ number one goalie for the foreseeable future.
He held the reins.
The 23-year-old was pulling out win after win in his second year of professional hockey. Petruzzelli’s confidence grew throughout every game and it didn’t seem like the belief in himself wou …

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Author: Nick Barden / The Leafs Nation

Anderson’s opportunity, Steeves shining for Marlies, Akhtyamov excellence: Leafs Prospect Roundup

Anderson’s opportunity, Steeves shining for Marlies, Akhtyamov excellence: Leafs Prospect Roundup

Another cruel twist of fate for Nick Robertson has opened the window of opportunity for other forwards in the organization. With Robertson on the shelf for the next couple of months as he recovers from a shoulder injury, and with Calle Järnkrok still out of action with a groin injury, it is Joey Anderson who is getting the first chance to carve out a place for himself in the Leafs’ lineup.
Anderson has toiled with the Marlies for the last couple of years after being acquired from New Jersey in the trade that saw the Leafs dump Andreas Johnsson’s salary but has struggled to make an impact in limited NHL appearances. Last season, he led the Marlies with 26 goals in 56 games and finished fourth in team scoring with 42 points. So far this season, he has once again been a top triggerman for the Marlies, currently sitting in second place on the team with 11 goals in 21 games.
A quality finisher at the AHL level, Anderson will likely have to find other ways to impress the coaching staff at the NHL level, but he got off to a good start in that regard in his first appearance with the Leafs this season agai …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Marner and goaltenders have driven the Leafs success: December Leafs Power Rankin’s

It’s the midseason grades edition of The Leafs Power Rankin’s

We’re back for yet another installment of the Leafs player power rankings. I have to say that I’m pleased that I’m not just writing Auston Matthews in at number one every month and I get to spice things up a little bit. That said, we can probably forget about a repeat of the Hart Trophy unless he finds yet another gear for himself. It’s not that he’s been bad, it’s that his supporting cast is sooo good.
Also of note is that most of this was written before Saturday night and it’s probably a good thing as recency bias could have impacted a few players both positively and negatively based on the game against the Flames.
Let’s kick things off with a new number one…
1. Mitch Marner (up from 6th)
For the second month in a row the top ranked player jumped from number six to number one. It’s interesting that when the Leafs have goaltending going their way it’s entirely possible for about 8 players or so to have a legitimate spot at number one.
Marner grabs this spot fairly easily, well… actually not that easily, it’s hard not to be impressed with what Matt Murray has done since he’s returned from injury and that’s why he’s at number two. Marner setting a franchise …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Leafs squander another in OT, fall 3-2 to the New York Islanders: Muzzy’s Muzings

Leafs squander another in OT, fall 3-2 to the New York Islanders: Muzzy’s Muzings

Another OT loss.
Lather, rinse, repeat.
Josh Bailey tied it late in regulation and Anthony Beauvillier notched the game winner 1:56 into the extra frame as the New York Islanders (12-8-0) came from behind to edge the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2.

Anthony Beauvillier wins it, 3-2 final.
Leafs fall to 1-5 in OT.
— Nick Alberga (@thegoldenmuzzy) November 22, 2022

22-23: 1-521-22: 9-720-21: 6-719-20: 8-918-19: 6-817-18: 12-716-17: 7-15
— Nick Alberga (@thegoldenmuzzy) November 22, 2022

Furthermore, the Leafs fell to 6-1-3 in November and 10-5-5 overall. All in all, they played well enough to win, but again, they let one slip away in OT. John Tavares, who was playing in game No. 300 as a Maple Leaf, potted his 11th of the season. Meantime, Auston Matthews buried his 9th while Erik Kallgren made 21 stops in the loss. Mitch Marner extended his league-high point streak to 13 games.
The Leafs have notched at least a point in 10 of their past 11 outings.
 Muzzy’s Muzings:
OT PROBLEMS
It’s a comedy act at this point, no? Of course, it didn’t help not having Morgan Rielly out there, they were sort of forced to trot Justin Holl out there. Honestly, for me, it makes no sense how or why a team this talented has so many problems playing 3-on-3. You think they would excel with more ice to dance. Oh well —at least this format isn’t used in the playoffs.
MORGAN RIELLY INURY
Here’s hoping it’s nothing serious for Rielly. That said, the 28-year-old was unable to return after colliding with Kyle Palmieri in the third period. After the game, Sheldon Keefe disclosed it was an upper body issue that required further testing. BRUTAL. For what it’s worth, Rielly’s missed just one game since the beginning of the 2021 season.

Morgan Rielly needs some imaging done on his injury.
— luke fox (@lukefoxjukebox) November 22, 2022

RED HOT PP
After an ugly showing a …

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Author: Nick Alberga / The Leafs Nation

Catching up with the prospect pool: Leafs Prospect Roundup

Catching up with the prospect pool: Leafs Prospect Roundup

Welcome to another edition of the Leafs Prospect Roundup here at The Leafs Nation! We’re going to do things a little differently this week, and rather than highlighting a handful of players in the system and their accomplishments over the past week, we’re going to do a rapid-fire round and bring you up to date on some of the bigger names in the Leafs’ prospect pool.
Let’s get to it.
Nick Robertson | W | Toronto (NHL)
Robertson was a star for the Marlies down the stretch last season after recovering from a broken leg suffered early on, finishing the season with 16 goals and 12 assists in just 28 games. He carried that into training camp for the Leafs and had a stellar preseason, ranking among the top scorers from the NHL’s exhibition schedule.
Due to cap restraints, he was sent back to the Marlies to begin the season but was quickly recalled when injuries to the main roster opened up salary cap space. He started with a bang, scoring two goals in his season debut – including the overtime winner – but it has been an up-and-down ride for Robertson since then. …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Keith Petruzzelli: What to expect

Keith Petruzzelli: What to expect

Another year of Maple Leafs hockey, another year of the injury bug causing goaltending issues.
With all of Ilya Samsonov, Matt Murray, and Joseph Woll at various phases of recovering from injury, the Leafs have been forced to lean on their depth. Erik Källgren, who saw some time with the Leafs last season, has filled in as starter, with mixed results.
The goaltender that intrigues me, however, is the acting backup Keith Petruzzelli. I wrote in my goaltending primer earlier this year that Petruzzelli would “have to have some degree of AHL success this season” in order to continue being considered an NHL prospect. And a degree of success he has had. Through six games with the Marlies so far, Petruzzelli is 6-0-0 with a .922 save percentage. This strong play, coupled with the Leafs’ injury issues, resulted in him signing his first NHL contract on November 6th.

Some Keith Petruzzelli highlights from this season. The 6-foot-6 netminder is 6-0-0 and has a .922 SV% with the Marlies. Coming off of a strong first professional season with the @NLGrowlers pic.twitter.com/09g3cj1WzB
— Kyle Cushman (@Kyle_Cush) November 6, 2022

To go from starting in the ECHL to earning an NHL contract within a year, injuries or not, is very significant. I spoke with TLN’s Dylan Murphy (@dylanmurphy329 on Twitter) who covers the Growlers for the site about him, and he praised Petruzzelli’s work ethic and positive attitude. Further, Dylan spoke with Growlers head coach Kyle Wellwood, who echoed that sentiment, saying that “[the organization] always said he was a gamer, he just had to learn to be a pro …

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Author: Colin Hunter / The Leafs Nation

Král gets the call, Tverberg tearing it up, Grebyonkin’s opportunity: Leafs Prospect Roundup

Catching up with the prospect pool: Leafs Prospect Roundup

This past week was another rough one for the Leafs, and with Sheldon Keefe searching for anything that could help get his club going, we saw the NHL debut of another Leafs prospect.
Filip Král, drafted in the fifth round back in 2018, was recalled to the Leafs and made his NHL debut against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night. He skated on a pair alongside steadying veteran presence Mark Giordano, seeing just under 12 minutes of ice time and finishing with a +1 rating. He was back in the same spot on Sunday night against the Ducks but played just over eight minutes in another game that ended up slipping through the Leafs’ collective hands.
There were promising flashes from Král in the first two games of his NHL career. He showed an ability to quickly retrieve pucks below his own goal line and make the proper read in a timely fashion in order to start the breakout – something that the Leafs’ defenders have struggled with so far this season. But there were also a few instances where Král bobbled the puck or telegraphed passes that were easy to disrupt, leading to turnovers.
All in all, the young Czech blueliner held his own in his first tas …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Make or Break: the 2022-23 Leafs goaltending primer

Make or Break: the 2022-23 Leafs goaltending primer

The NHL season is finally upon us, and with it, another season of Toronto Maple Leafs hockey begins.
Among the fans of this team, I’m sure that there have been a variety of approaches to this season. Many will be back, as interested as ever, analyzing the opening lineup and consuming all of the content that they can get their hands on. Others may be feeling apathetic about it all. And who could blame them after yet another first-round disappointment?
If you’re reading this, it’s likely that you’ve been at least mildly engaged with the team and their moves during the off-season. It certainly has not been a summer without intriguing storylines. While most of the moves made during the summer are interesting individually, they have all been colored by one theme: this is Kyle Dubas’ last shot. Notably, Dubas, with one year left on his contract, has not been given an extension as General Manager of the Leafs. Rightly or wrongly, every move made since the Game 7 loss to Tampa Bay will be seen to have a very direct impact on the job security of Dubas.
This brings us to goaltending. The most notable roster moves for the Leafs this summer were in the crease. Fan-favor …

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Author: Colin Hunter / The Leafs Nation