Tonight the Leafs take on a young Edmonton Oilers team that has won two in a row. If the Leafs are going to stand much of a chance of making the playoffs, these are the kinds of games that they absolutely need to win. Of course, it's not impossible that the Leafs fight back to garner a playoff spot from the current eight-point gap, but it looks more and more improbable with each passing loss. No, it's not 'do or die', but it sure will be 'do or cry' tonight if the Leafs lose.
You want some kind of smarmy, obvious key to the game? Our top line needs to score goals and work harder. Just look at what Clarke MacArthur had to say in this Jonas Siegel article:
"We didn’t cycle the puck," he said, "and I haven’t been in a game where’s that happened in a long time. I thought other lines competed hard and did what they had to do to win the game for us and for our line, it’s just not acceptable. Our compete level was so low [Tuesday] night. It’s really frustrating to go back and think about."
MacArthur Calls Out Kadri and Kessel
He manages to say it nicely, but he's not happy about their efforts on Tuesday against the Lighting.
Leafs Top Line Bottoms Out - The Globe and Mail
Even with new linemates, Kessel's slump deepens. Oh, and MacArthur's not happy. From Mirtle.
Teachers’ tell NHL they have no plans to sell MLSE stake - The Globe and Mail
Dave Shoalts explains that although Rogers is interested in buying, The Pension fund isn't as keen to sell.
Arbour, Quinn and other former Leafs and Punch Imlach disciples who went on to coach
More good reading from Michael Langlois over at Vintage Leaf Memories.
Does Kessel Need Help or Does He Need to Do More By Himself?
Curt S goes over what he thinks Kessel is and what he isn't.
General Borschevsky has a few thoughts to share about the team's recent performance.
From Alec Brownscombe, over at Maple Leafs Hotstove.
Does writing about the Leafs have to make you toxic?
Who? Leaf reporters? Bitter? Never.
Other Hockey Links:
NHL team values on the rise - The Globe and Mail
National Hockey League clubs enjoy 2 per cent increase while Leafs remain hot property. (Duh.)
Middle of payroll the backbone of team success
PJ Stock comes up with a list of players that he thinks provide good back for the buck.
10 Surprises in the 10/11 Season Thus Far
Kyle Larkin takes us through his list.
Content is king in the modern sports world - The Globe and Mail
Stephen Brunt says the model of sports ownership has shifted dramatically over the last couple decades.
Just a quick blurb about each game played on Wednesday. I think it's good to try and keep tabs on how other teams are faring in the league, so check it out. From the Associated Press.