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Toronto Maple Leafs: Catching Up with the Toronto Marlies, November Edition

CHICAGO, IL - FEBRUARY 29: Jake Gardiner #51 of the Toronto Maple Leafs moves against the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center on February 29, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Blackhawks defeated the Maple Leafs 5-4.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Jon ReidCorrespondent IINovember 21, 2012

It's been about a month since we last checked in and updated the season of the Toronto Maple Leafs' minor league affiliate Toronto Marlies.

On Oct. 25, the Marlies were stumbling out of the gates with a record of 2-2-1, following an incredible Calder Cup run last season and Mike Kostka, the journeyman minor league defenseman was leading the team in points, with five.

Since then, the Marlies have found their stride.

Their record now sits at 9-5-1, good for a 7-3-0 mark since Oct. 25.

They now sit just four points back of the division-leading Abbotsford Heat, who have gotten off to a blistering 10-2-3 start to their campaign.

Toronto is led offensively by Keith Aucoin (another offseason journeyman addition) and Mike Kostka, who have each tallied 14 points in their first 15 games.

Nazem Kadri has also turned his season around, as he also sits tied for the lead in points, with 14 through 14 games played. This is especially encouraging considering last time we checked in with the Marlies, he had just two assists in his first five games. Since that point, he has managed two goals and 10 assists in nine contests.

It's nice to see Kadri getting back on track.

The Leafs' stud youngster on the blue line, Jake Gardiner, is also having a great start to his 2012-13 campaign, racking up five goals (good for a tie for second on the club) and seven assists through 15 games.

Gardiner also leads the club in shots on goal with 47, and has been incredibly disciplined, taking just one minor penalty all season.

The one area Gardiner could use a bit of an improvement is in his player rating, which currently sits at minus-2.

Meanwhile, center prospect Joe Colborne has still yet to emerge as the offensive force the Maple Leafs organization had been hoping for. He's got just one goal and five assists in his first 13 games of the season.

On the goaltending front, Ben Scrivens has been good, but not great, posting a GAA of 2.55 and save percentage of .900.

It's been Jussi Rynnas that has really stood out for the Marlies.

He's played in four games this season, allowing just eight goals and blanking his opponents twice. With a GAA of 1.93 and save percentage of .938, Rynnas has been a really nice surprise.

The Marlies' next four matchups will all take place away from Ricoh Coliseum, as they'll travel to Binghamton, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Hershey and Rochester to finish off the month of November.

If you're a Leafs fan and have time to watch a game or two, I highly recommend it. The Marlies are an exciting team to watch and it definitely helps cope with the everlasting NHL lockout.

 

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