I knew I better get something up about tonight's game. The Barilkosphere will be awash with opinion after a win like the one over New Jersey tonight. The impression left by Phaneuf is an accurate one. He is playing the same as he always has in Calgary. His shot is almost always on net, averaging, I'm sure, 95 MPH. He didn't get too many chances to rush the puck, but when he does he can get to the net and has moves when he gets there. He dropped the gloves capably and landed several decent hits. Don't be shocked when he misses one, though and gets caught a little out of position. That's why he's with Beauchemin.
Let's move on to the one of the other two additions. Fredrik Sjostrom truly is fast and showed the rest of the Leafs just how you kill a penalty. He rushed the point and swung his stick with abandon, blocking a shot in the process. Looks a little better out there than Blake, which I compare him to because of his speed. The difference is that Sjostrom goes to the net, not past or around it.
The final debut to talk about is Jean-Sebastien Giguere. The Leafs have had decent luck with French Canadian goaltenders. Especially in the last 20 years. I have been critical of Giguere....and I don't see that changing too much. Giguere is a little slow and relies on technique and angles. That's fine and good when you have a little luck on your side, as he did tonight. Overall he played a good game and I will save the scathing opinions until he inevitably has a bad run. I hope his bad run this year has passed. I watched the game against the Edmonton Oilers where he snapped on Ryan Smyth for getting too cozy in the crease. Giguere pulled himself from the game and went on a horrendous run afterwards. I like a little passion in Leafs goaltenders(like Belfour and Cujo), but it can get out of hand too.
The Leafs cruised to a 3 - 0 win tonight on the juice added to the drink and a Dion Phaneuf straw to stir it. Dion will end up with at least 17 goals this season and a C on his chest b y October(yeah, I know I said that the other day, just making sure you heard me).