Zach Hyman continues to play a big part in the Toronto Maple Leafs’ success by making the smart plays at the right time.
The Toronto Maple Leafs picked up their second win in a row against the Dallas Stars in a hard-fought, back and forth effort.
There were many spectacular plays and individual moments but one that stands out was the impact Zach Hyman had on the game. As he has shown throughout his time with the Leafs, Hyman brings an intensity at both ends of the ice the team lacks.
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It’s his willingness to go into the dirty areas that has brought him even more success despite coming off a torn ACL which forced him to miss the start of the season. There is enough skill up and down the lineup and that is why Hyman is an invaluable part of the team.
Scoring his 14th goal of the season, there is a good chance Hyman can surpass his career-high of 21 that he had last season. When he scores, it seems like an added bonus considering everything else Hyman brings especially on the penalty kill.
What has made the Leafs successful the past couple of games is getting off to a strong start by scoring the first goal. Earlier in the season, they were having trouble getting off on the right foot and it seemed like they were missing something at the start of the game, a lack of energy and consistency.
“We’ve definitely been starting strong on the road, you score the first, you more often than not win,” Hyman told reporters after the game. “I don’t think you change home or road, you have to play consistent, play your style. We’re an up-tempo, high paced team so we have to stick to our strengths. Make sure while we’re doing that, we’re picking our spots.”
Since being placed on a line with Mitch Marner and Auston Matthews, Hyman is enjoying a lot more success and the results are tough to ignore. Not only is Matthews pushing to catch David Pastrnak for the NHL goal-scoring lead, but we’re also are seeing a consistency from him that was missing for part of the season.
It might not be all because of Hyman, but it’s no coincidence that when he’s at the top of his game, the Leafs find themselves on the right side of the win-loss column.
What do you think about Hyman’s impact on the Leafs? How crucial will it be s the team tries to get back into a playoff spot? Let us know in the comments below.