The Toronto Maple Leafs were lucky to escape games against the Montreal Canadiens and Minnesota Wild with victories.
There was no such luck last night when the Toronto Maple Leafs hosted the Chicago Blackhawks.,
The early season has been marked by a ton of sloppy play, terrible play by several defenseman, and bad goaltending.
Toronto Maple Leafs: It Is Completely Unaccepted to Lose to the Blackhawks
The Toronto Maple Leafs probably deserved to win last night, but they didn’t. Instead, they lost by three goals.
The first period was awful, as the Leafs gave confirmation bias fans a lot to talk about when it comes to starting on time and playing down to their opponents. Whether or not those are real things that actually happen, or just things we notice a lot when they do is a discussion for another day, but the Leafs in the first period last night were terrible.
(Though they did shutdown Connor Bedard, who had his worst game so far – 3 shots, no points, negative expected-goals).
There was actually no score after the first – Joseph Woll made several great saves and the Leafs gave themselves time a second chance at the game, but they failed to capitalize on it.
The Leafs actually more or less dominated the last two periods, but Woll lost his edge, and the Leafs couldn’t score on some guy named Arvid Soderblom.
Even though Keefe finally switched Klingberg away from McCabe and out of the top-four, Klingberg was still inexplicably the Leafs second-most used defenseman.
This makes no sense, because he really and truly sucks at playing hockey when it’s not a power-play. Yet again, the Leafs just bleed high-danger chances when he’s on the ice (seven against, two for).
I am not kidding, I think you could cut him, give his minutes to Mikko Kokkonen, save $3 million dollars and improve the team at the same time.
And if Keefe keeps playing him so much I’m going to start writing about getting a new coach.
Overall, the Leafs were decent last night, but they have one defensive pairing (McCabe, and Klingberg) and one forward line (Reaves, Gregor, Kampf) that just got destroyed whenever they played.
Ultimately, that cost them the game. A game in which there is no acceptable excuse for losing. The Leafs needed a miracle to beat the Canadiens and then lost to the Blackhawks. All the while, predictably getting hurt by their misguided off-season additions – Klingberg, Domi and Reaves have all been terrible so far, and Bertuzzi has been, at best, fine.