Although the Toronto Maple Leafs lost Monday night to the Chicago Blackhawks, they have started the 2023-24 NHL season with a promising start. With a 2-1 record heading off on a five-game road trip, the statistics show that several key players have shone brightly.

Here’s a closer look at eight key findings from the first three games.

Related: The Good, Bad, & Ugly: Maple Leafs Lose 4-1 To Blackhawks

Key Finding One: Nylander’s Explosive Start

William Nylander has emerged as the standout performer for the Leafs, lighting up the scoreboard with six points (three goals and three assists) in just three games. He’s been on fire, consistently delivering when it matters most.

Key Finding Two: Matthews’ Goal-Scoring Prowess

Auston Matthews, widely regarded as one of the NHL’s top goal-scorers, has lived up to the reputation. He’s already netted six goals, making him the league’s leading goal scorer early in the season. His shooting accuracy, at 28.6%, is remarkable.

Auston Matthews, Maple Leafs

Key Finding Three: Tavares’ Playmaking Skills

John Tavares has taken on more of a playmaking role, leading the team with five assists. His vision and ability to set up his teammates have been impressive. Additionally, he boasts a 62.5% faceoff win rate, contributing to puck possession.

Key Finding Four: The Defense Has Been Involved in the Offense

The Maple Leafs’ defensemen, including John Klingberg and Morgan Rielly, have been actively involved in the offence, with each tallying three assists. Their ability to join the rush and create scoring opportunities has been valuable.

Related: John Klingberg: Maple Leafs’ X-Factor for 2023-24

Key Finding Five: The Maple Leafs Have Goaltending Concerns

The team has allowed 13 goals over three games, averaging 4.33 goals against per game. There have been some struggles in the net, and the save percentage stands at 85.1. This fact suggests room for improvement.

Ilya Samsonov, Maple Leafs starting goalie

Key Finding Six: Bertuzzi Has Had a Physical Impact

Tyler Bertuzzi has made his presence felt with 10 hits and contributed with a goal. His physicality adds an extra dimension to the team.

Key Finding Seven: The Maple Leafs Have Dominated the Faceoff Circle

The Maple Leafs have excelled in faceoffs, boasting a 54.1% win rate, indicating their strong puck possession game.

The Bottom Line Thus Far for the Maple Leafs

With Nylander and Matthews leading the charge in scoring and the defensive core actively contributing, the Maple Leafs have shown early scoring promise. However, addressing goaltending concerns and power play efficiency will be key to maintaining their strong start. As well, the team’s focus on offensive power has come at a cost. The Maple Leafs are not playing good enough defence.

As the season unfolds, Maple Leafs fans can expect more excitement from these standout players.

Related: 3 Key Takeaways from Maple Leafs’ 4-1 Loss to the Blackhawks

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