Mitch Marner's attitude towards the media and fans took a real turn over All-Star weekend

Mike Armenti
February 4, 2024  (11:22)

Mitch Marner celebrates a goal
Photo credit: Toronto Star

Shortly before All-Star weekend, we saw struggling netminder Ilya Samsonov really begin to turn his game around, helping the Leafs to secure a trio of huge wins against Seattle and Winnipeg (2x) before entering their bye week.

There was a lot of talk about Samsonov's incredible bounce-back performances and when the media met with Mitch Marner to discuss what it means to have Samsonov playing so well again, the Leafs winger went on a bit of an emotional rant about how it can really suck the life out of you when the fans and media ride you so hard while you're struggling. With Marner having gone through the same before, you could really tell that he felt Samsonov's pain.
Marner is not a fan of the media on most occasions. That much is clear. His demeanor during interviews is often very short, to the point and void of any real detail or emotion, so when he does go off, usually you can feel the change in energy. At other times, he can be happy and fun-loving as well, but for the most part, many of his interviews seem like he's counting down the seconds until he can leave. That wasn't what we experienced during All-Star weekend.
Marner's demeanor was vastly different over All-Star weekend. Obviously, winning may have a lot to do with that, but in the clips below, you can just see a much more bubbly, positive, upbeat Mitch Marner.
Was this all in the name of creating some solid PR? Maybe, but perhaps it's just a shift in how he views the fanbase and the media after the outpouring of love on All-Star weekend.
Marner remains one of the premier wingers in the National Hockey League. He has that innate game-breaking ability and there are not many wingers who can do what he can do when he's on. When he's been off, though, it's not hard to find reports about his struggles and criticisms over his lofty contract from both media and fans. Hopefully, getting a small taste of what winning in Toronto is like will help fuel him and lead to many more positive experiences in Toronto.
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Mitch Marner's attitude towards the media and fans took a real turn over All-Star weekend

Can the Leafs win a Stanley Cup with a player like Mitch Marner?

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I'll be surprised if the Leafs re-sign him1339.5 %
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