Goals: 0 Assists: 1 Pts: 1
HIS ICE TIME:
24 shifts, totalling 18 minutes and 8 seconds.
Best word to describe Burmistrov's first period -- that saw him bumped up to the team's 1A line with Andrew Ladd and Bryan Little -- might be this: uneventful. Then again, that was the story of the entire first period for the home side, who were outshot 7-3 and did little to get fans off their hands.
Much, much better work for the young Russian. He played with a pile of confidence, especially in the offensive zone and drew an assist on Mark Stuart's goal that tied the game at 2-2. Night and day from the first when Burmistrov, like the whole squad, looked a bit tentative.
Third period / OT:
The confidence was still there, although the chemistry with Ladd and Little still needs some percolating. It's hard not to notice the speed and skill he brings to this line.
WHAT WE LIKED:
The parts of Burmistrov's game that were already being lauded -- his attention to detail in his own zone and his niftiness with the puck -- were still there and with increased ice time on this line, there was more of all of it. The growth in his confidence after being given this opportunity was also obvious -- in fact, he was named one of the game's three stars.
WHAT WE DIDN'T LIKE:
Occasionally tends to fancy-up even the most-basic play -- like a simple dump in -- by over-stickhandling. But it's hard to fault a guy for trying to bring some creativity to an attack that could use more.
This is the type of effort that screams out for more. Head coach Claude Noel opted to juggle the lines by bumping Burmistrov up with Ladd and Little and the early reviews have to be nothing but positive. What was especially noticeable, but difficult to measure simply by statistics, was the boost the move gave him.
-- Ed Tait