The Toronto Maple Leafs are tied 2-2 against the Tampa Bay Lightning right now which means another Game 7 is looking unfortunately promising.
Based on how this series is going, the Toronto Maple Leafs are going to win Game 5, lose Game 6 and then play a deciding Game 7 next Saturday night at home.
Since 2013, the Leafs have gone the distance in every post-season series, except one. The only time they didn’t was during Auston Matthews first campaign when the Leafs lost in six games to the Washington Capitals, but nobody was mad at that point.
The anger and frustration built with their losses to Boston, Columbus, Montreal and (hopefully not) Tampa Bay.
When Toronto blew a 4-1 lead with 11 minutes left during Game 7 of the First Round against Boston, that was a complete meltdown, but that roster was terrible. The Boston Bruins were a much better team and they deserved to win the series.
However, none of the other Game 7 (or Game 5 against Columbus) losses have been justified.
We Can’t Take Another Toronto Maple Leafs Game 7
Toronto’s first Game 7 loss was just ugly. They forced a deciding game by winning Game 6 at home and then they completely fell apart.
Lesson learned. This was still a young team and that wasn’t going to happen again.
Or was it?
Fast-forward to next season.
Toronto went into Boston and won Game 5 , giving them a 3-2 series lead and a chance to win the series at home. However, not only did they ruin that opportunity, they put up another stinker on the road in Game 7 and once again lost to Boston for the third consecutive time in Game 7.
We tried to talk ourselves into thinking that those losses were good and it would only help fuel them for future success, but the painful losses continued to happen.
I know the pandemic screwed up the next season, but Toronto had no business losing to Columbus in the “play-in” games. Toronto won Game 4 in the most impressive fashion, yet nobody was there to watch. All of that momentum was supposed to carry over to Game 5, but instead, they lost, again.
Then as we all know, the Leafs blew a 3-1 series lead and lost on home-ice against the Montreal Canadiens last year.
I don’t need to go into much more detail than that, because that wound is still fresh, but as you can see, every year it’s the same ending. Toronto does some good things, but ultimately, it’s never enough and they lose in Game 7.
Whether or not the Toronto Maple Leafs win or lose Game 5 at home on Tuesday night, I’m already convinced this series is going seven games. There’s really no other way this can shape out and I think I already know the result.
I don’t want to bet it, because it’ll be so painful if it comes true, but at +280, it seems like free money that Tampa Bay is winning this series in Game 7.