During a season where the Toronto Maple Leafs lean heavily on their rookies, a bye week is necessary to give the young players a break. Luckily for Mitch Marner and his teammates, it’s not difficult for them to have some fun, whether it’s during an off-week or on the bench during a game.
The Bond Between Mitch Marner and His Teammates
Since the beginning of the campaign, many viewed Marner as the little kid amongst men, and he’s loved for it. Aside from making creative passes night in and night out, Marner receives a lot of attention for the bond he has with his teammates.
Marner and Matt Martin
Watching Marner and Matt Martin goof off with each other is special because the two players are polar opposites in playing style. Marner, while small relative to his peers, is arguably the most skilled player on the team. Martin on the other hand, weighing in a 220 pounds, is known for his willingness to fight and his physicality. Both players play a different kind of game yet they’re the newest Leafs bromance to come to surface.
It looks like Marner made himself comfortable in Martin’s home and on his stuffed bear. The friendship doesn’t end there as the two of them and teammate Connor Carrick found themselves dabbing in Grand Cayman.
— Sydney Esiason (@sydneyesiason) January 10, 2017
While it’s all fun and games for the two teammates, they’re not shy about giving each other a hard time when they’re not on vacation.
Martin’s productivity on the ice may be limited compared to Marner’s. But his presence on and off the ice clearly loosens things up for one of Toronto’s stars.
Looks like Matt Martin and Mitch Marner have carried bye week into the bench pic.twitter.com/Vjri0c72zV
— Jeff Veillette (@JeffVeillette) January 14, 2017
Marner and Auston Matthews
Marner’s relationship with his fellow rookie superstar Auston Matthews has been evident for quite some time now. It blew up when CBC caught both rookies singing to Bon Jovi while on the bench.
— TheDailyGongshow (@DailyGongshow) December 15, 2016
From then on out, both of them have been linked with an off-ice bond. They may casually be seen matching outfits:
— NHL (@NHL) December 20, 2016
Or they may have been spotted on a ferris wheel in the Distillery District:
Marner and Matthews are set up to be a significant part of the Maple Leafs future, so it’s probably a good idea to become close friends now.
Marner and Others
Martin and Matthews seem to be the closest to Marner this season, but that doesn’t mean the 19-year-old winger doesn’t enjoy his time with other teammates.
Here’s Marner, Matthews and Tyler Bozak struggling to hold a baby together:
The Marner-Bozak-James van Riemsdyk line seem to enjoy Halloween almost as much as they do scoring goals together.
Mitch Marner and His Teammates
Whether it’s through The Leaf: Blueprint, Road to the NHL Outdoor Classics or simply social media, Leafs fans are able to see more behind-the-scenes antics of their favourite players. It’s likely that there are more players with similar qualities of Marner, but he’s one player who hasn’t been shy of his relationship with his teammates. Perhaps those qualities help the Leafs in the dressing room, translating it onto the ice. If there’s one thing that is certain, this team is having a lot more fun than than they did in the past. A lot of that comes from winning, but give some credit to the new players as well.
With 35 points through 41 games played, Marner is playing at a 70-point pace. Should he continue his impressive play for the rest of the season, Toronto could find themselves in a playoff spot.
In the words of Marner himself (and Bon Jovi): Woah, we’re halfway there.