The Toronto Maple Leafs have played about 25% of their schedule, which means it’s time to check in on the NHL standings.
If I had to rate the Toronto Maple Leafs performance to date, I would have to give it a D+.
This season is going horribly, and the Leafs are almost already eliminated from Atlantic Division Title contention which significantly impacts their path through the playoffs and makes their chances of winning the Stanley Cup much lower.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Having Tons of Fun With the NHL Standings
The Toronto Maple Leafs currently sit in 11th overall in the NHL and 5th in the conference.
They have a record of 10-5-3 not counting last night’s game, because it hadn’t been played yet while I was writing this.
Unfortunately for the Leafs, half their wins have come in OT or a Shootout, and only 4 teams (Montreal, Minnesota, San Jose and Chicago) have less.
The Leafs sit fourth in the Atlantic Division and currently occupy the first Wild Card spot in playoff seeding.
Below the Leafs sit two teams all but guaranteed to make the playoffs – New Jersey and Pittsburgh – which means that two teams currently in a playoff spot won’t have one later.
The Leafs do have games in hand against Tampa and Florida, so they aren’t really even behind those teams – it is safe to say that outside of Boston, every single team in the Atlantic Division has been a major disappointment so far this year.
The Boston Bruins are playing completely out of their mind, and so far this year they have picked up over 80% of the points available to them. They are due for regression, but they already have a nine point lead over the Toronto Maple Leafs.
For the Leafs, the Atlantic Division Title isn’t completely lost yet. They have to get their blue-line under control and they have to stop playing Ryan Reaves, and their goaltending needs to be better.
If those things happen, the Leafs can take advantage of Boston’s eventually descent into mediocrity. But right now, the Leafs are more likely to do worse in the immediate future than better.
All signs point to the Leafs record being lucky, and since they haven’t cut Ryan Reaves or improved their horrible blue-line as of yet, they do not appear to have much chance of catching Boston.
It would be ironic if the Leafs finally broke through this year with a lucky goalie-based playoff run even though they aren’t nearly as dangerous as they were the previously four or five years. This would be analogous to the Washington Capitals Championship year too, adding an even. more delicious layer or irony to the proceedings.