Once in a while, we are reminded that good things happen to good people and that’s clearly the case right now for Jack Campbell and the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Whether you are a die-hard Leafs fan or despise the team, it’s hard to root against Campbell right now. After setting a new franchise record for consecutive wins, we continued to see what makes Campbell stand apart from every other player on the team.
His genuine good nature is infectious and you can see the impact it’s having on his teammates after picking up the victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday. It was then magnified in his post-game interview with Sportsnet’s Shawn McKenzie.
This is a player who was once viewed as a top goaltending prospect when the Dallas Stars selected him 11th overall in the 2010 NHL Draft. After spending time in the AHL winning a Calder Cup, Campbell found himself in the ECHL and was dealing with mental struggles.
“All day, every day it was like ‘I’m a good person,’ obviously I always try to be a genuinely good person and stuff, but I would view myself in the mirror as like if I’m a good or bad person based on if I won or lost,” Campbell said back in 2018.
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Moving on to the Los Angeles Kings resurrected his career and now Toronto needs him to be the backbone between the pipes. So far he’s exceeded expectations and needs to find a way to stay healthy as he continues to battle through injuries.
Getting Campbell last season was seen as general manager Kyle Dubas trying to stabilize the backup goaltending position. Now, this mystery ailment which has kept Frederik Andersen out of the lineup has shown Campbell’s true value and how worthwhile the trade was.
The Leafs figured that by adding Aaron Dell as their third goalie, they would be covered in case of any injuries or COVID situations. Unfortunately, that changed when Dell was picked up off waivers and Michael Hutchinson was the next in line to play.
You don’t need to tell Leafs fans the value of having Campbell in the net when you look at how Andersen has struggled this season and how inconsistent Hutchinson has been.
At this point of the season, Toronto is just trying to sort through the next month and solidify their position in the standings. How much they can lean on Campbell will be interesting especially with no concrete idea on when Andersen will be back.
For now, enjoy the good times with Campbell because a story like this doesn’t come around too often especially one as wholesome as this.
How impressed have you been with Campbell’s play this season? Can he keep it up? Let us know in the comments below.