The Toronto Maple Leafs won their fourth in a row last night by beating the New Jersey Devils.
This is the fifth separate time that the Toronto Maple Leafs have put together a four-game winning streak this year, and if they win tonight (also against the Devils) it will be their fourth five-game winnings streak.
The last time they had a chance to win five in a row, they blew a lead to Colorado and lost in OT and ended up taking “just” nine out of ten points.
The win last night gives the Leafs a ridiculous 28-10-3 record on the season, which in normal years would easily make them the best team in hockey. For whatever reason, this year there are six teams with points-percentages over .700. Still, the Impressive Leafs are 4th overall, despite being ten points back of division leader Florida.
Note that Florida has played five more games.
Toronto Maple Leafs vs New Jersey Devils
Last night’s game was extremely fun to watch. The Leafs started off terribly, but after staking the Devils to a 2-0 lead and (I think) a 9-1 shots advantage, the Leafs woke up and demolished the Devils for the next 50 minutes.
This included outshooting them 11-2 (all situations) in the 3rd period, while scoring four times. Marner scored in his 5th straight, while Matthews had a hattrick.
Much like the game on Saturday against Detroit, it looked at first that the Leafs were going to turn in a dud. Instead, they showed why they’re the best team in hockey, recovered from a rough start and did what they are paid to do.
Last year’s playoffs, all the postponed games, and the fact that four of the best five teams in the NHL play in the Atlantic have obscured just how amazing the Leafs have been this season.
Since an early season hiccup that saw them lose to New York, San Jose, Pittsburgh and Carolina in quick succession, the Leafs have gone a berserk 26-6-2 , and 22-3-0 when Mitch Marner is in the lineup. (stats naturalstattrick.com).
The Toronto Maple Leafs will play the New Jersey Devils again tonight, and while they were planning on using Petr Mrazek in goal, I am unsure if that is still the plan.
Jack Campbell – who has been ice cold lately – was chased from the game after the Devils scored three goals on nine shots. It wasn’t exactly his fault – the Leafs didn’t show up until ten minutes into the game.
Since Campbell only got in a half of a period, the Leafs might go back to him tonight. Or maybe they stick with the plan. It’s not like Mrazek is overworked – he’s only played in seven games all season.
Either way, the Toronto Maple Leafs will most likely win their fifth in a row.