4 Things the Toronto Maple Leafs Must Do to Overcome the Bruins

Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game Two
Toronto Maple Leafs v Boston Bruins - Game Two / Richard T Gagnon/GettyImages
5 of 5

Start Joseph Woll in Game 4

The “Sammy” chants from the Scotiabank Arena faithful (at least the ones who aren’t busy working their phones) are heartwarming, but the fact remains that Ilya Samsonov’s save percentage through the first three playoff games sits at .895. 

Compare that to the combined numbers for Boston’s Jeremy Swayman and Linus Ullmark, coming in at .939, and the issue becomes clear.

Samsonov just hasn’t been good enough.

Numbers aside, goals like the one Trent Frederick scored in Game 3 on Samsonov just can’t happen.  No screen, no deflection, no unbelievable snipe, just a complete softy.  The Toronto Maple Leafs struggle mightily to score playoff goals, and can’t afford to give up anything the opposition doesn’t 100% earn.

Woll hasn’t played much since coming back from an extended injury layoff due to a high-ankle sprain, and was somewhat inconsistent in the starts he did get in the final weeks of regular season play.

However, he did play well last season when thrust into the playoff spotlight, and much has been made this year about his focus and ability to block out negativity.

Some may feel putting the inexperienced Woll in at this point would be taking a huge risk, but I would argue that leaving a very average Samsonov in any longer is taking at least as big of a gamble, if not more. 


Taking the conservative route hasn’t worked very well in Toronto over the years, so perhaps it’s time to start making some aggressive moves to shake things up.  Other than another playoff series, what do the Toronto Maple Leafs have to lose?