Well, after another computer meltdown, I’m back in business, at least for now. Definitely going to have to upgrade the laptop in the very near future, but until then, keep your fingers crossed, cuz who knows when the dreaded blue screen of death just might rear its ugly head yet again.
Tough weekend for the Buds, but they showed plenty of heart throughout. Road games in Boston, Ottawa and Philadelphia after a disappointing performance against Carolina crammed into a single weekend could have been disastrous, but the young boys in blue turned in some solid efforts all around. Unfortunately, effort doesn’t always equal results, and it’s clearly evident that the young group of Leaf forwards will either have to mature very, very quickly, or Brian Burke still has a lot of work to do.
Without a doubt, the Leafs look much better defensively with a stable goaltending situation. Three months ago, if you’d told me the Leafs could go three games and give up 6 goals in 3 road games, I would have been ecstatic. Unfortunately, the departure of pretty much all of the point producing forwards with the exception of Kessel has left the Leafs bone dry on offense, and that showed this weekend. The game against Boston, I’ll give that one to Thomas. Fine, the guy’s trying to prove he wasn’t a one shot wonder last year, and is fighting for his job with a hotshot young goalie (that the Leafs traded to Boston for the hapless Andrew Raycroft). Thomas played great, and the fact that he got to see Phil Kessel practice for the last two weeks probably didn’t help in the shootout.
Saturday in Ottawa, Toronto hit another hot goalie in Pascal Leclaire, but had better luck in the shootout, as Kessel and Kulemin both scored to give them another win in the Battle of Ontario. Sunday, the Leafs just couldn’t find the back of the net against Michael Leighton and the Flyers. A couple of dumb penalties put them in a hole early, and even though Kulemin evened the game early in the 2nd, two defensive breakdowns late in the same period put the game well out of reach for what has become a very lifeless Toronto offense.
Luca Caputi made his Leafs debut this weekend, and looked pretty solid throughout. He’s a solid young talent, and will fit in nicely in Burke’s plans for the rebuild. He’s tough and scrappy, with a nose for the net. Plus, he’s from Toronto, and who doesn’t love a good hometown kid?
Coming up this week, so long as my laptop doesn’t crash again: A look at just what exactly Burke and Wilson have to play with on offense, a recap of Orr vs. Carkner 2009-10, plus, in case anyone wants to hear it, my opinion on the whole hit-to-the-head situation.