By Louis “King of Roncesvalles” Pisano
One of the big off-season signings by the Toronto Maple Leafs GM Brian Burke was that of defenseman Mike Komisarek. As any fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs will tell you, he hasn’t been the pillar of strength on the blue line the Leafs had hoped he would be, at least so far.
He's been out of the line up and missed eight games from November 13th to the 27th with a leg injury (thigh) and is listed now as probable for tonight’s tilt against the hated division rival Buffalo Sabres.
Komo was brought on board because of his physical play and defensive prowess. So far in the 16 games he’s played while wearing the blue and white has no points and is a minus nine and has 31 penalty minutes.
Now, those numbers can’t be put squarely on his shoulders as the Leafs fell out of the gate and with so many new faces in the line up it’s going to be tough for any team to get some sort of team chemistry right off the bat.
The goal tending in beginning of the season was atrocious and pucks seemed to have eyes of its own and found whatever little hole they could to sneak in behind whichever goalie was in the net. Not to mention the Leafs lost both starting goalies for a time early in the season as well, which isn’t going to help anyone on the team, least of which would be the defence, stats wise.
Komo will come back and should get back to laying the body into opposing forwards and with that will force teams to think a little more before trying to break into the Leafs zone while carrying the puck. He will also be a force in front of his own net and help clear that area so Jonas Gustavsson can get good looks at shots coming from the point.
His leadership is another quality he will bring back to this team that is on the upswing seemingly with points in five straight games including two wins in row.
All in all, baring early season statistics and so forth, Komisarek will be a welcome addition to a Toronto blue-line that has been improving slowly and will take another step in the right direction with his return tonight against Buffalo.
In case you didn’t know, starting Dec. 5 Gabe Morency (formally of The Score ) will be launching his new website. Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter, my B/R counterpart, and I will be throwing down our Podcast “Get The Puck Out ” every Saturday from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The Live Podcast will be broadcast in studio from Toronto featuring some betting analysis, fantasy advice, trivia, team, player updates, and more puck talk than you can imagine.
Be sure to call in and let your opinion be known. The inaugural show is set for Dec. 12. Don’t miss it, puckheads!
You can catch Morency and “Get The Puck Out” at www.morencysports.com the site launches Dec. 5.