Nazem Kadri has a distinct memory from his first and only game as a Toronto Maple Leaf last season, and it's not a good one.
The wide-eyed 19-year-old center glided toward the center-ice dot at Air Canada Centre to take the opening faceoff against San Jose Sharks star Joe Thornton. But before Kadri knew what was happening, Thornton had won the draw -- easily -- and the game was under way.
"I was just in awe. I didn't know what to think. I wasn't exactly ready to go," Kadri said this week. "I'm pretty sure he won the faceoff all the way back to his goalie."
It didn't get much better for Kadri that night. He was held without a shot in 17:26 of ice time and finished minus-1 in a 3-2 loss.