The Toronto Maple Leafs return from a nearly perfect road trip and are off until Wednesday when they play the Anaheim Might Ducks, hopefully with a well rested Jack Campbell back in form.
The Toronto Maple Leafs just went on a six-game road trip that saw them play four of the NHL’s best teams. They went 3-2-1 in those games, and split a pair against a couple of dud teams.
Though a 3-2-1 record might not seem that great on the surface, if you look at the context, it was a nearly perfect road trip.
The Leafs played well enough to beat Colorado and New York, while the game against the Coyotes was probably in the top ten all-time NHL least deserved losses.
We all know that the results of any game can be pretty random, but to head out on the road for two-and-a-half weeks, after taking nearly three weeks off, having your team ravaged by Covid, and playing six games, including four of the best teams, and finishing above .500. while posting a nearly 60% expected-goals rating. in the combined six games……well, it’s damn impressive.
What’s Next for the Toronto Maple Leafs
Ondrej Kase and Justin Holl have exited the Leafs Covid Protocol list and will be back for Wednesday’s game against the Ducks.
Jake Muzzin remains out with a concussion and you never know with a head injury how long a player will be out. Hopefully not long, because, as we’ve seen in both of the last two years in the playoffs, Muzzin is vital to any success the Leafs might have.
The Leafs, who already have played three or four games less than most teams, will play just twice this week (they will play the Red Wings on Saturday). Weirdly, they played just twice last week, and will play just twice next week.
After that though, the schedule gets pretty crazy due to the fact that all the Toronto Maple Leafs previously postponed so many games.
The Leafs are 7-2-1 in their last ten games, and amazingly, have moved DOWN the standings during this time. There are only four teams with better records in the entire league, and in each of their last ten games, these are their records:
Tampa 7-3-0 (Leafs gained one point)
The two teams directly behind the Leafs are Pittsburgh (8-2) and New York (7-3).
I am not sure how it’s even possible, but all seven of the NHL’s best teams are currently on fire. Minnesota is in a slump, but Boston and St., Louis are also 8-2 in their last ten.
So, despite being 7-2-1 in their last ten games, which is 15 out of 20 points, and good for a .750 points-percentage, and is therefore a record that would, 100% of the time, win you the President’s Trophy over a full season, the Toronto Maple Leafs are actually tied for having the third-worst record in the NHL among the league’s top-ten teams during this stretch.
During this time, they have gained one point over Tampa, and three points over Minnesota.
That’s it. That is crazy.