Around hockey: Drouin breathes easy after nose surgery
One reason Montreal’s Jonathan Drouin thinks he can add a step to his game is the nose surgery he had over the summer. “It was (the result of) a Thomas Hickey hit in the playoffs when I was in Tampa three or four years ago. It got worse and worse. (The air passage) was 95 per cent blocked on the one side,” he said. Drouin thinks the problem inhaling might have led to problems for him late in the season, and late in games. It was repaired in May. “I feel way better.”
Three stars: The Leafs’ Auston Matthews was the third star of the NHL’s opening week, with five goals in his first three games. Detroit’s Anthony Mantha, with five goals and two assists in two games, was the second star and Mika Zibanejad, with four goals and four assists in two games, was No. 1.
Par for the course: Former Leafs forward Par Lindholm has landed as a fourth-liner with Boston, Toronto’s playoff rival. He hasn’t scored much but coach Bruce Cassidy praises his defence. “He doesn’t quit. His work ethic’s outstanding.” But, as in Toronto, there’s plenty of competition for fourth-line roles with Joakim Nordstorm, Sean Kuraly, Chris Wagner and David Backes pushing for playing time. Kevin McGran