Ok 9 - 3. I doubt anyone saw that coming. James Reimer making 42 saves on 45 shots in his 3rd NHL game? Sure why not. Mikhail Grabovski, Clarke MacArthur, Nikolai Kulemin all scoring 2 goals? Sure why not. Tomas Kaberle and Kulemin posting 4 point games? Sure why not. Kris Versteeg, Grabovski, MacArthur all posting 3 points? Kessel and Armstrong adding 2? Hey get in on the action.
Brett Lebda a -3 on the night? HOLY HELL GET THIS GUY OFF THE ICE!!!!
More on the Leafs production after the jump.
Ok so before I start all of this, obviously you're aware a lot of Leafs padded their stats against the Thrashers. This season is only 40 games old for the Leafs, but there has been some consistency in the performance of the MGK line, and it seems like Versteeg and Kessel have started to produce regularly also. That's 5 offensive forces that are clicking right now.
But is it really just for the last 3 games? 10 games? 20 games? First half of the season? You be the judge.
How good have the Leafs top 5 been after 40 games? Think about the following:
MacArthur is on pace for 25 goals and 68 points.
Grabovski is on pace for 35 goals and 66 points. He has 12 goals in his last 14 games and is currently the hottest scorer in the NHL. He is Alexander Semin hot - remember when he had 14 goals in 16 games to start the season? Grabovski is now 1 goal behind him in the goal scoring race.
Versteeg is on pace for 25 goals and 62 points. He has 28 points in his last 30 games. That's consistency anyone could love.
Kessel is back into the swing of things and is on pace for 35 goals and 60 points. He only has 7 goals in his last 15 game stretch, but he has 15 points... again... solid production.
Kulemin is on track for 31 goals and 60 points. He of the 4 point night, has now scored 6 goals and 11 points in his last 10 games. Also very consistent and productive.
So remember that list, and think about who of the group has wildly outperformed their POTENTIAL. I know a lot of people might say Grabovski, but he's only shooting 14.0%; or MacArthur, but he's only shooting 14.5% - which happens to be his career average; or Kulemin, but even if his goal totals tail off he still seems likely to put up assists.
Kessel had a huge slump for almost a half of his year so far, and Versteeg is on track for approximately the same kind of season he's put up the past two years (with slightly more ice time).
So now that we've got those numbers in mind, I ask you... how many team's had five players post 60 point seasons in the NHL last year, and how many teams had three 30 goal scorers?
If your answer to the first question is ZERO... give yourself a pat on the back.
If your answer to the second question is Washington, and nobody else... then again... congratulate yourself.
NOW think about the fact that the Leafs have an offensive collection of players, the oldest of whom is 27, who are producing at a rate that lets you mention them in the same breath as the Washington Capitals... and NO OTHER TEAM IN THE NHL.
I await the eventual "small sample sizes" and "this can't continue" arguments in the comments section, and I can confirm for you that I sincerely doubt that the 5 Leaf forwards will all hit that level of production, but right now it's sort of nice to think about that.
Worst case, you can all sit happy knowing the Leafs now have a higher production rate on a goal per game basis than 4 of the 5 other Canadian franchises in the NHL. Vancouver cover your eyes - the rest of you, for one day, can eat it!
That is all.