Toronto Maple Leafs beat Los Angeles Kings 3-2: Observations

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 11: Roman Polak
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 11: Roman Polak /
3 of 3
Toronto Maple Leafs
TORONTO, ON – OCTOBER 11: Roman Polak /

3) Roman Polak

Let’s talk quickly about Polak, who replaced Connor Carrick in the lineup. As mentioned, he contributed on the first goal and then promptly took a slashing penalty just minutes later.

Polak is going to have to adjust to the new slashing rules just like everyone else. But it’s hard to play a game like Polak’s and not take a lot of ticky-tack penalties like the NHL is calling this season. He’s going to have to be careful to not go over the edge with the infractions.

More from Toronto Maple Leafs

When the re-signing of Polak was announced, there was a good mix of outrage and excitement from Leafs Nation. From all accounts, he had a good first game.

He didn’t feature on the penalty kill, which was what most thought he’d be back to do. Polak played 12:13 in the game and provided for the Leafs against a Kings team that likes to play hard below the dots and cycle the crap out of teams.

It will be interesting to see what Mike Babcock decides to do when there’s a matchup against a faster team. In that instance, Carrick should be in the lineup. If they can run Carrick against faster teams and Polak against slower squads, it should work out well for the Leafs.

Next: Leafs taking the right approach with Mitch Marner

The Toronto Maple Leafs return to action Thursday, when they take on the Carolina Hurricanes at home. Let us know your thoughts on the game or any questions you may have, in the comments below.