Dec 27, 2012, 12:49 PM EST
AHL fans will already know the name Mike Kostka.
Soon NHL fans might, too.
Kostka, a 27-year-old defenseman, is creating a good deal of buzz in hockey’s most buzzing market, Toronto. His 28 points are second on the Marlies and second behind Justin Schultz among all the league’s d-men.
“He has been impressive,” Leafs president and general manager Brian Burke told TSN.ca via e-mail. “High hockey IQ, great patience with the puck, can really thread passes on the power play.”
Kostka’s hockey journey has been a long one. The Marlies are his fifth AHL stop following four seasons at UMass-Amherst. He was never drafted.
Last year, he helped Norfolk win the Calder Cup, after which the Leafs signed him to a one-year deal that’s paying him $250,000 to play in the minors. That’s more than most AHLers earn and evidence of the organization’s deep pockets.
If the NHL has a season, cracking the Leafs’ line-up would be a realistic goal for Kostka.
“He’s a guy firmly on our roster that if the NHL ever gets going again here I would hope that he gets at least a look,” Marlies coach Dallas Eakins said recently. “Let’s get him into a game or two and see what he can do at the NHL level.”
Nov 26, 2014, 7:45 PM EST
Expected to join the Blues for practice on Friday.
Nov 26, 2014, 7:00 PM EST
Replaced by Andre Benoit.
Nov 26, 2014, 6:30 PM EST
Was hurt during Tuesday’s practice.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:31 PM EST
Two teams meet for the second time this season.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:12 PM EST
After an injury to Brian Elliott.
Nov 26, 2014, 5:00 PM EST
Yappy Lappy was at it again.
Nov 26, 2014, 4:06 PM EST
“Anybody can GM, anybody can be a president… whether you’re going to be good at it or not, who knows.”
Nov 26, 2014, 3:54 PM EST
San Jose coach is feeling the heat.
Nov 26, 2014, 3:20 PM EST
Click for video of the incident.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:57 PM EST
Minny dominated L.A. early in the season, but lost 2-1.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:45 PM EST
News and notes from around the crease…
Nov 26, 2014, 2:27 PM EST
Originally out 4-6 weeks, he’s back in just over three.
Nov 26, 2014, 2:04 PM EST
But how much public money will be required?
Nov 26, 2014, 1:03 PM EST
The Blues are one of the few teams in the NHL with a surplus of quality centers.
Nov 26, 2014, 12:57 PM EST
Jordan Binnington on his way up to St. Louis.
Nov 26, 2014, 12:22 PM EST
What are the chances the Islanders, Leafs, Predators, Canucks, Flames and Jets can hang on?
Nov 26, 2014, 12:11 PM EST
Fall from grace for the former 30-goal scorer.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:42 AM EST
Out “a couple of weeks” with a lower-body injury.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:28 AM EST
Arizona forward forced the Avs d-man from the game.
Nov 26, 2014, 11:10 AM EST
Dallas forward does have a history with the NHL’s player safety department.
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