Wow, so after two periods this post was going to be about how Vesa Toskala has given the Leafs the ability to steal games once again and I was going to make fun of Habs fans again for thinking that their team is good and that their goalie has never stolen a game. Then a funny thing happened, the real Leafs made an appearance and instead of the determined, hard skating team that had played the first 58 minutes we were treated to an empty headed display of how to throw a game away.
There is tonnes of blame to throw around but none of it should touch VeTo who was nothing short of amazing especially during the first five minutes when the Hurricanes were outshooting the Leafs 10-1. His post-game interview certainly made it seem like he has finally got the measure of playing in Toronto. It'll be a long two more years for the Finn. The penalty kill was once again stellar but eventually ran out of gas in the overtime period.
Top 5 Blame Targets
- Paul Maurice - how often does he have to watch the Leafs get victimized by a quick-strike team before he learns to use his timeouts? Call a timeout, give Kubina and Gill a rest and put them out for the last minute and a half to deal with the flurry. Oh, and play Stralman. If Make-A-Wish Woz can get ice-time in which to take stupid penalties then surely an actual defenceman can get some time.
- Alex Ponikarovsky - Shoot it or dump it in the corner. Do not glide into the zone and see where you are going to shoot the puck and think and think and think and where the hell did the puck go?
- Nik Antropov - I am getting your jersey someday and you played a great game except for your last shift in overtime. First, good play ragging the puck on that last rush but why try to set up a goal? Dump it in the corner and let your line do what it does best. Also, for the love of God, don't try to block shots with your feet. Tie up the stick.
- Alexander Steen - Same to you. TIE UP THE STICK! Why is that the most common complaint about the Leafs' coverage in front of the net? You're in the NHL. That shit isn't even acceptable in house league hockey.
- Me - Why would I start thinking about it being a win before the final buzzer?
Of course, the Leafs threw away the lead on their own but the win was referee aided. How Hedican got away with blatantly kicking his leg out to trip Ponikarovsky is beyond me. Staal's bear hug of Sundin is maybe a little more understandable but two 5 on 3s against with the second coming in overtime on the back of two missed calls against the Leafs is criminal.
SPG winners were: Shot - Blake, Penalty - Bell, Goal - Devereaux. Vote for the player of the game in the poll below.