Tonight, the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 in a shootout. But preseason hockey is kind of like Whose Line Is It Anyway?, where everything's made up and the points don't matter, so let's get right down to the takeaways we had from this game.
- Mikhail Grigorenko was one of the stories of this game, as he scored two absolutely fantastic goals, one in regulation and one the shootout. Grigo was on the first line tonight along with Cody Hodgson and Chris Stewart, and had a much better showing than he would have put forth in years previous. It's obvious that he's improved since last season, the question is: how much? I doubt he'll do enough to start the season in Buffalo, but his continued improvement in Rochester will be one of the big things to watch this season.
- Andrey Makarov also had himself a game, making 29 saves (many of them of the flashy variety) and earning second star honors in Toronto. He'll also be in Rochester this year, but he certainly has the talent to be a starting goaltender. Whether he can ever even out his streakiness - this game was great but he showed very poorly in Traverse City - will be the question that defines his career for the foreseeable future.
- The Sabres didn't escape this game unscathed, as Johan Larsson and Patrick Kaleta both took elbows/pucks to the face and left the game. It's doubtful that they'll miss time, but with Mark Pysyk already on the shelf for another week or two, the Sabres would like to avoid further injury concerns for the rest of the preseason.