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From the Branches: Leafs win; all Canadian teams out of playoff spots

The Maple Leafs had goal scoring help from some unexpected players in a 3-2 defeat of the Flyers. Meanwhile the rest of Canada's NHL teams lost and now none are in playoff slots.

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Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning!

Roman Polak and Matt Hunwick scored last night as the Leafs beat the Flyers 3-2, with James Reimer putting up a great, and surprisingly physically aggressive performance.

Recap: Leafs 3, Flyers 2 - Pension Plan Puppets
The Leafs snapped a five-game losing streak by topping the Flyers late in the third.

Matt Hunwick's first goal as a Maple Leaf - Pension Plan Puppets
The game-winning goal against the Flyers came with 10 seconds left.

This is what happens when you rely on third period comebacks - Broad Street Hockey
The Flyers overcame forty straight minutes of poor play and tied the game on a fantastic individual effort from Shayne Gostisbehere, but then allowed the Toronto Maple Leafs to score the game winning goal with eight seconds remaining and lost, 3-2.

PPP's Other Leafs Stories

Roman Polak: Trade him or keep him? - Pension Plan Puppets
The Leap Day Trade Deadline is fast approaching, and it's time to endlessly speculate about deadline deals. Today we'll discuss Roman Polak.

Maple Leafs prospects recap: Defense first - Pension Plan Puppets
Donaghey, Nielsen have big weeks. Recapping games from January 11-17.

2016 NHL CSS Rankings: Who should the Leafs pick? - Pension Plan Puppets
With the top kids playing in Europe and North America named by NHL Central Scouting, we can take a look at who the Leafs can choose from with their many, many, 2016 draft picks.

Last Night's Other Games

All your playoffs belong to the US! With the Habs taking another big loss last night, they have sunk out of even a wildcard slot. According to our poll from yesterday, many of you don't mind a lack of Canadian teams in the playoffs; but I present to you a new nightmare scenario: The Sens are the only Canadian team to make the playoffs.

Pastrnak was traded mid-game!

Mississauga Matt's had some hard falls since his trade to Calgary.

Guess from where Ovi scored completely uncovered by the defence?


Stammer! You need to be more gentle like you were with the puppies!

SB Nation Game Recaps

Devils Survive 3rd Period Onslaught to Beat the Flames 4-2 - All About The Jersey
Reid Boucher scores the game winner in back-to-back games since being called up as the Devils outlast the Flames in a very entertaining home win. This is the recap of tonight's action.

Miller Scores In Overtime, Rangers Top Canucks 3-2 - Blueshirt Banter
The New York Rangers tossed 49 total shots on net tonight, but it took overtime to overcome Ryan Miller's spectacular performance.

Special Teams Specialty in Caps 6-3 Win - Japers' Rink
The Caps get a little revenge and get a couple of points out of their Division rival

The Habs can't even beat Rask anymore - Eyes On The Prize
You know it's bad when...

Lightning hold off Oilers 6-4, stretch win streak to 6 - Raw Charge
The Lightning survive a sloppy, back-and-forth affair that saw them surrender another two goal lead and come away with a 6-4 win over the visiting Edmonton Oilers, extending their season-high winning streak to six.

Chicago downs Nashville, 4-1, for team record 12th straight win - Second City Hockey
The Blackhawks earned a win in Nashville tonight, setting a franchise record for consecutive wins in the process.

Especially Bad Teams and Esa on a Tuesday Night - Defending Big D
The Stars power play and penalty kill couldn't get the job done tonight. No, seriously, this is a new post. It's just that same thing happened again.

Riveters Self-Destruct, Surrender Three-Goal Lead to Beauts, 6-5. - Blueshirt Banter
Captain Ashley Johnston: "We lost our composure. When you lose your composure, you lose your mind."

Postmedia Layoffs

Postmedia merges newsrooms, cuts 90 jobs in response to financial woes - The Globe and Mail
None of the titles will close, and the company will continue publishing two papers in some cities

Layoffs Hit Sports Media World Again Toronto Sports Media Blog
It was Postmedia’s turn to throw homes into chaos.

John Scott

It's official, hockey folk-hero John Scott will captain the Pacific division team at the NHL All-Star Game. This was the only graceful exit from the mess the league created for itself. Thank to the team at BoC for their hard work making this happen.

WE DID IT! - Battle of California
After several long hours of meetings between Battle of California, the NHL, and the NHLPA that were initiated Monday night and lasted into Tuesday morning, the NHL announced that John Scott will in fact captain the Pacific Division in the upcoming All-Star Game.

Other News

Brian McGrattan is apparently OK after this scary KO.

Canadian Olympic Committee parts ways with chief sports officer - The Globe and Mail
The departure of Ms. Assalian as chief sport officer late on Monday, along with executive director of operations Judy Crute and human resources manager Robert Cousin, comes five days after a report said senior members of the COC knew about sexual-harassment accusations levelled at the organization’s former president, Marcel Aubut, but did little about them.

Michel Therrien and life on the hot seat - Article - TSN
As the losses continue to mount, so too does speculation about Michel Therrien’s job security in Montreal.

Canada's largest rep hockey league moves to limit foreign players - Article - TSN
A dramatic rule change, expected to be passed in February, will make it far more difficult for young players from Russia, the United States and other countries to join the GTHL, which administers rep and house league programs for about 38,000 players.

Morton's Microscope: Jeff Skinner - Canes Country
After a sluggish start in terms of scoring goals, Jeff Skinner has surged toward the top of the league in that category recently. Find out why that should not surprise you here.

Dallas Stars Need to Handle Their Unforced Turnovers Better - Defending Big D
The Dallas Stars are struggling. The how and the why appear to go beyond simply 'Corsi' and 'Fenwick'; today we'll look at the Minnesota Wild game to see if we're looking at a microcosm of Dallas' problems.

Those Patrick Marleau trade rumors aren't going away - Fear The Fin
Yup, we're still doing this.

The Price is Right: What Does a Cup Cost? - Hockey Wilderness
Today we explore the construction of an NHL roster by taking a deep dive on the payroll of the top 6 contenders in the NHL as of 1/15

NHL kangaroo courts fine for relieving players of their cash |
For infractions like eating an apple in the hot tub to simply being cheered by family members, NHL players are fined by their team's kangaroo court.

Where Are They Now? The Building And Dismantling Of The Canucks' 2011 Team - Nucks Misconduct
Once in a while I like to take a trip down memory lane and examine what happened to a Canucks team that went to the Stanley Cup Finals

Projecting Team North America’s roster for the World Cup of Hockey - Article - TSN
Peter Chiarelli and Stan Bowman have a unique challenge on their hands ahead of this September’s World Cup of Hockey.