Analyzing the Toronto Maple Leafs Latest Victory Over Flames

CALGARY, AB - JANUARY 26: Frederik Andersen #31 and Justin Holl #3 of the Toronto Maple Leafs celebrate after defeating the Calgary Flames during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on January 26, 2021 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images)
CALGARY, AB - JANUARY 26: Frederik Andersen #31 and Justin Holl #3 of the Toronto Maple Leafs celebrate after defeating the Calgary Flames during an NHL game at Scotiabank Saddledome on January 26, 2021 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Photo by Derek Leung/Getty Images) /
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The Toronto Maple Leafs secured a 4-3 win in Calgary Tuesday night and now have the most points in the NHL.

Sure, they’ve played more games than almost every other team in the league but they’re still in first place, so that’s something they should be proud of.

It’s crazy to think that Toronto has a .750 winning percentage and they haven’t even played close to their best. The Leafs have had a handful of great periods, but overall they’re not even close to reaching their potential. When this team actually peaks, watch out.

Either way, here’s the good, bad and the ugly from last night’s win.

The Good, Bad and Ugly

Good:

  • George Armstrong Patch:
    • The Toronto Maple Leafs did a great job in honoring the legacy of George Armstrong last night. I’m not sure if the team is planning on wearing this patch for the rest of the year, but if they do, I’m all for it. (See the below tweet for the patch).
  • Justin Holl:
    • This is crazy to say but there’s no defenseman I trust more right now than Justin Holl. He’s playing at such a high-level is looking like a top-pair player. Not only is he playing great defensively, but he has five assists in eight games. Holl’s lone assist last night was such a smart play. He purposely shot the puck off the Calgary goalie’s right pad which sprung out to Wayne Simmonds for the tap-in goal.
  • Perfect First Period:
    • After the first period, I’m sure many East Coast viewers went to bed because Toronto looked like they’d cruise to victory. The Leafs were up 2-0 and only allowed one shot against the Calgary.
  • Marner to Matthews, Matthews to Marner
    • Even though this duo has done it numerous times, they still surprise me with their outstanding skill. Mitch Marner made an amazing pass to Auston Matthews, who buried home a power-play goal to make it 2-0. Matthews then repaid the favor late in the third period when he found Marner in the high-slot, who slapped home the eventual game-winner.

Bad:

  • Allowed Calgary Back in the Game:
    • After dominating the first period and limiting Calgary’s chances, the Leafs allowed the Flames to get right back into the game with a goal 1:21 into the second period. Even after they gained their two-goal advantage back minutes later, they didn’t put their foot on the gas as this game was 3-3 with only 10 minutes left. A win’s a win so it’s no big deal, but I’d like to see this team rally to an easy 5-1 win instead of making it stressful every night.
  • Freddie Andersen:
    • Andersen didn’t really have a chance on both Johnny Gaudreau goals but he should have stopped the Milan Lucic goal. I’m 100 percent nitpicking his game because overall I thought he played really good. However, the only reason he gets a “bad” grade is because his save percentage once again was in the .800’s.

Ugly:

  • Joey Anderson Penalty Late in Third:
    • When Sheldon Keefe put out the fourth-line of Joey Anderson-Pierre Engvall-Travis Boyd with less than three minutes remaining, I had a scary Mike Babcock flashback. For whatever reason, I thought something bad was going to happen, and it did. Anderson shot the puck over the glass and gave the Flames a power-play to attempt to tie the game. Fortunately, the Leafs killed the penalty but that could have been even uglier if they’d scored and went onto win the game.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are continuing to win ugly and I love it. Securing six wins in your first eight games is a huge accomplishment but in a 56-game season, that’s even more important.

Leafs Should Trade for Bobby Ryan. dark. Next

For those of you East Coast viewers that thought a 9:00PM EST. start was late, the Leafs will face the Edmonton Oilers at 10:00PM EST. Thursday night. After Matthews missed his last match-up against Connor McDavid, this game will definitely be worth staying up for.