Matt Lashoff possesses the type leadership qualities every teams needs to succeed and with Lashoff’s leadership, he has help lead the Toronto Marlies to a whole new level.
After Lashoff played 11 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs towards the end of the 2010/11 NHL season. This former first round pick was hoping to be among the team’s first AHL call-ups this season by the Maple Leafs.
Those hopes were all ruined when Lashoff injured his knee during a game in October, during an incident that was called a “questionable hit” by Toronto Marlies Head Coach Dallas Eakins.
“Once the injury happened, it was a pretty big shock to my system,” said the 25-year-old. “I pretty much focused on setting my mind set straight, once I got the surgery, to work hard and I gave myself the goal of coming back for the playoffs.”
At the start of the first round of the 2012 AHL’s playoffs, Coach Eakins requested to Lashoff if he could push himself to get back to game shape if the Marlies go deep in the playoffs, despite Lashoff’s currently inability to play. As the days went along the odds that Lashoff would return were low, but the notion of Lashoff making a return, when he could have packed up his locker, truly inspired the Toronto Marlies.
Well, the verdict is that Lashoff ended up playing in game #4 against the Abbotsford Heat.
“I had a lot of confidence in him, so I had absolutely no reservations,” said Coach Eakins. “He’s a veteran guy that has worked extremely hard to come back from a real tough injury. The other thing about Lashoff is he’s a great leader. He’s a guy that you want in your dressing room, a part of your team.”
The Toronto Marlies first conference game will be on May 17th, in Oklahoma City against the Barons.
Rant Sports Toronto Maple Leafs Feature Writer
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