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“Everyone has to find ways to elevate,” said Tavares, off to a strong start himself when all the off-season attention was on Matthews, Mitch Marner and new players such as Thornton. “You can’t replace anyone in the lineup; everyone brings their own skill set, which makes them who they are as a player.
“I haven’t watched too much (developments) outside our division because (the North) is what really matters. You just try to best prepare yourself on a daily basis, be ready for the unexpected. Adversity comes in different forms at different times throughout the year. For guys who haven’t had the opportunity (to play), it’s a great chance.”
CUJO HAS COMPANY
Frederik Andersen has spent much of his Leafs career walking past pictures of Curtis Joseph around SBA, or seeing him featured on the video board.
Now his name is atop Cujo’s on the franchise’s goaltending wins list. No. 139 moved him into sole possession of fourth place in franchise history.
“It’s cool to be in the same sentence as a guy like Cujo,” Andersen said after his 30 saves. “He’s a phenomenal person and I’ve enjoyed seeing him around here under normal circumstances (as an alumni visitor).
“You play a lot of games here, as part of a good team, you end up with a lot of wins. (Tonight) we wanted to respond and get the two points back.”
Those 139 victories are still not half the total of leader Turk Broda’s 304. Johnny Bower is second at 219, while Andersen’s next target would be Felix Potvin at 160