Former UMass hockey captain Mike Kostka garnered much attention and praise for his play during his NHL debut on Saturday night, helping the Toronto Maple Leafs down the Montreal Canadiens, 2-1, in the teams' season opener on Hockey Night In Canada
. Kostka saw 23 minutes of ice time in the contest, the second-most of any player for Toronto, and picked up an assist just four minutes, 51 seconds into his NHL career.
Kostka was called the "best defenseman for the Toronto Maple Leafs" by hockey icon Don Cherry on Coach's Corner:
Toronto Star - Maple Leafs: Journeyman blueliner Mike Kostka no overnight sensation
TSN - Masters: Leafs' Late-Bloomer Kostka Revels In 'Special' Debut
ESPN.com - Leafs' opening win owes a lot to AHL grads