Toronto Maple Leafs hold open practice to the public
By Marco Di Meo & Samantha Martin
The Toronto Maple Leafs held their second practice, which was open to the public on Jan. 14. Over one hundred fans visited the MasterCard Centre to watch the Leafs partake in an hour-long practice.
Long-time Leaf fan Barry Murphy came out to both practices to see how his favourite team was doing. “This is my second time here now and my hopes for the Leafs this year are that they make the playoffs this year. That’s it.”
Murphy said based on these two practices he is not impressed.
“I don’t know, they look a bit sloppy to me so they’re not giving me much confidence,” he said.
Some fans, like Lara Perks, came out just to see some hockey. “I’m just happy that there’s hockey to watch now. I’ve been following the lockout for a long time so I’m happy to see the boys back on the ice,” she said.
Perks also said there were no hard feelings because of the lockout, “I’m not mad at [the players] or anything like that. We just want to see them play and I’m just a hockey fan in general. It was nice to see them out practicing.”
For the fans, the practices gave them a chance to see new faces like off-season acquisition James Van Riemsdyk and first round draft pick Morgan Rielly, which is exactly why Matthew Pasut came. “I came out today because I’m a Leafs fan. I decided to take the day off school, I thought it’d be nice to see the new lineup.” Pasut said.
Fans can see the Toronto Maple Leafs in their season opener on Saturday, Jan 19. against the Montreal Canadiens.