BOSTON — All that was missing in Jake Muzzin’s wild 48 hours was Bob Cole shouting “oh baby!”
On Thursday, the Leafs defenceman and wife Courtney welcomed their first child, a daughter name Luna, at a Toronto hospital, with Muzzin catching a late flight to join his mates here. An airport delay in Boston complicated his plan and stretched the day longer.
But rested by game time Friday, he was much better, a huge assist on Auston Matthews’ ice-breaker goal and 22 minutes of quality time in the 2-1 win that gives the Leafs a 3-2 series lead.
“It’s been crazy,” Muzzin said. “I don’t recommend having a baby in playoffs, but that’s how it worked. I’m grateful for the win tonight and most importantly, the health and happiness of my wife and my new girl. Exciting times. I didn’t sleep much.”
Coach Mike Babcock was relieved for the family, too.
“I was talking to his bride the other night and she was just matter-of-fact about having the baby, (that) he will be there on time, he will be ready to play. (She) has got family around her, it’s great.
“He is a big part of our team. I thought him and (Nikita Zaitsev) were real strong for us tonight.
“They welcomed Luna into the world and good for them.”