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From the Branches: Maple Leafs begin back-to-back against Avalanche

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The Avalanche are the worst team in the league

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Colorado Avalanche Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

There’s no arguments to be made here. The Avalanche are terrible.

After Patrick Roy gave up as head coach, they brought in some guy who hung around the entrance to the dressing room after the games or something. He has, unsurprisingly, been terrible.

The Avs have won only 11 of their 31 games this season which is hilariously bad, right? Except, the Leafs have only won 12 of their 31 games this season.

The difference is the Bettman points: the Leafs have seven of them; the Avs only have one.

When the Avalanche lose, they lose BAD.

You don’t have to go far past raw basic stats here to see a problem. The Avalanche have the third worst shots-for/60 rate in the league, and the second worst shots-against/60 rate in the league (data from corsica.hockey).

Should be an easy win tonight.

The cynic in me says the Leafs will lose 10-1 tonight, but then, tomorrow, they will somehow beat the Wild (who have the same goal differential as the Habs) 1-0.

We’ll have a game preview up later this morning

Last night

McDavid is just beyond. He’s beyond.

I want to know what the joke was.

With Bozak injured, Byron Froese has been called up.

Byron Froese called up; Ben Smith on IR - Katya
This might be distinction without a difference territory, but the Leafs are making another roster change prior to their trip west.

91% of you think JvR should be traded, if the price is right.

Hmmmm...

Well...

I will not sacrifice JvR.

We’ve made too many compromises already, too many retreats. They invade our ice, and we fall back. They assimilate entire draft rounds and we fall back.

Not again.

I WILL NOT PRESIDE OVER THE DEMISE OF LEAFS NATION!

NOT ME!

By the way

Jonathan Toews has not scored a goal for seven weeks
Toews fighting frustration as goal drought drags on - Sun Times