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From the Branches: Maple Leafs leave California with 1 point

It was a terrible road trip.

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Toronto Maple Leafs v Anaheim Ducks Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The Leafs didn’t blow a lead last night, because they never had one. The annual California road trip ended on a low note with a 5-2 loss to Randy Carlyle’s Ducks. This loss combined with a shootout loss by the Islanders knocked the Leafs out the Wild Card playoff slot.

It was not a game worth staying up late for. In fact, you may have even fallen asleep at one point when we were treated to a five minute “one millimetre offside” review.

They head home with the weekend off to lick their wounds. The next game is Tuesday.

Three takeaways from Leafs’ disastrous, thee loss road trip - The Athletic
“The Leafs now have only five wins in their last 18 games, dating back to the game before the all-star break in late January. That’s five full weeks of suck – not just this one on the West Coast.”

Meanwhile the Marlies play the St. John’s IceCaps in back-to-back games this weekend. The Marlies have solidified their standing in the North Division and look quite likely to make it to the playoffs.

Remember when the Marlies had too many goalies? - Katya
Injuries are causing problems just as they’ve cleared out the excess.

It’s Clarkson Cup weekend!

The game is tomorrow in Ottawa and will be broadcast on Sportsnet. The Calgary Inferno will face the Canadiennes de Montréal.

Baseball Annie put together a spectacular 1F1A(F) and analysis of how these teams’ offence works so well.

Bettez is the most dominant player you’ve never heard of - EotP
You can’t ignore the numbers: No player has done what Ann-Spohie Bettez has since joining the CWHL.

Will the CWHL move the Clarkson Cup Final next season? - The Ice Garden
[Species: And will the move be accidentally leaked on the back page of the program?]

Women are proud to be part of hockey history - G&M
Sunday’s event demonstrates not just how far the league has come in its 10-year history but how very far women’s hockey has come since 1990, when the very first World Cup of women’s hockey was played in this same city.

Other News

Talk about waiting until the last possible second...

Growth of Data & Analytics in Business - The 6th Sens
This was written by Stefan Wolejszo (@StefanWolejszo) who attended the panel discussion on the ‘Growth of Data & Analytics in Business’ the Senators hosted prior to the start of last night’s game versus the Avalanche.

The Canadiens Are Having A Good Season, But Trading Subban Was Still A Bad Idea - FiveThirtyEight

Goodbye, Mason: Did Neuvirth’s new contract end a Flyer career? - BSH
Our Supreme Overlord looks at where Steve Mason’s uplifting comeback story end up going so wrong.

Roussel’s Injury Doesn’t Change His Expansion Draft Eligibility - DBD
[Species: This is about the Stars, but has useful information for any fan about injuries and the expansion draft.]

Let’s fix the penalty shot system in the NHL - FTF
Rule breakers aren’t getting harshly enough.

Should the Arizona Coyotes trade Oliver Ekman-Larsson? - 54H
Today we take an in-depth look at a move that could affect the Coyotes franchise.

Jori Lehtera: The gift that stopped giving in 2014 - SLGT
[Species: It’s a great feeling when your “eye test” of another teams’ player turns out to be true. I noticed he looked bad at the World Cup, and has been bad since.]


Last night was Jay McClement’s 900th NHL game. How did that happen?

Replacement level hockey players turned broadcasters really care a lot about Ho-Sang wearing #66. I wonder what would happen if you told them most ‘Millennial’ fans don’t even know who Lemieux is.