Toronto Maple Leafs: Time to Exorcise Some Bad Memories

TORONTO, ON - FEBRUARY 24: Connor Brown
TORONTO, ON - FEBRUARY 24: Connor Brown /

Time for the Toronto Maple Leafs to exorcise some demons.

The Stanley Cup Playoffs start tomorrow and like kids waiting for Christmas morning, we cannot wait. Watching the kids lead the Leafs into the playoffs last year was a bit of a surprise. That surprise reminded me the joy in seeing Toronto Maple Leafs playoff hockey again. It also brought back something that the media would never let us forget– The collapse in Boston four years earlier.

It’s very fitting that as the Leafs are now a legitimately good team (and arguably a contender) that they will be back in Boston tomorrow night. As much as I want the Buds to win the cup, they have to get past the the first round. What a wonderful opportunity to slay the drag… I mean bear and get some sweet justice.

Leafs vs Bruins

Just think about how much different this team is now. Only a handful of the players on our team now were there for the final ten minutes of game 7. Kadri and Gardiner are solid players, still with us and better than ever. Bozak and Komarov are on expiring deals and are likely gone for good. JVR is still awesome, but has perhaps priced himself out of town.

The team’s front office consisted of the likes of Dave Nonis, Dave Poulin and Claude Loiselle. Our couch was Randy Carlyle! Dion Phaneuf was our captain! Help! I’m having flashbacks!

More from Editor In Leaf

Just look at this team now. We have a legitimate number one goalie in Freddy Andersen and he eats the Bruins for breakfast. We have Mitch Marner and William Nylander. Morgan Rielly is a top-pairing defence man. We don’t have a captain yet, but we have AUSTON MATTHEWS. Our coach is Mike Babcock. Mike. Babcock.

Amazing how much things have changed over the the last five years, and for the better! Brendan Shanahan runs the show. Mark Hunter and the scouting staff don’t draft for truculence. Kyle Dubas is likely our General Manager-in-waiting. Lou, meanwhile, figured out how to trade David Clarkson and Dion Phaneuf, which were small miracles in and of themselves.

This team is on the upswing, lead by elite young players and arguably the best coaching staff in the game. It’s been smashing long-held franchise records all season. We had to settle for hope not too long ago. Now we enjoy the awesome reality of having a great and exciting team once again. Not just for a year, but for years to come.

Next: In Depth Series Preview

Now is the time to exorcise those bad game seven memories and watch the Leafs eliminate Boston, starting with game one tomorrow night. I don’t know what will be sweeter, victory or finally hearing Jim Hughson and Craig Simpson talk about something else…