The Toronto Maple Leafs lost 4-2 at the hands of themselves, but also the Los Angeles Kings. They’ve now dropped three in a row and will try to avoid a California sweep against Anaheim tomorrow night.
Justin Holl had himself a night, especially in the second period. He was in the box for two separate penalties that both tied the game and gave the Kings the lead, and then he was nowhere to be found on a third.
Tavares and Engvall scored for the Leafs. Ilya Samsonov stopped 25 of 29 in a loss that definitely wasn’t his fault. The Kings had four goalscorers, including Adrian Kempe, Viktor Arvidsson, Gabriel Vilardi, and Kevin Fiala. Cal Peterson stopped 26 of 28 for his win.
The first line was completely useless for the entire 60 minutes. The second line was mixed at 5v5, but Tavares scored on the power play and Nylander had three great chances. The problem with this team is the lack of a first line, it’s worse than not converting, they’re not generating a single piece of offense.
Durzi nearly scored with the first chance of the game as Kempe got around to the back and was able to sneak a puck through Samsonov and into the slot. Rielly tried to clear the puck all the way out, but it only came to Durzi, luckily his shot was blocked.
Rielly cleared the free puck from the zone— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
Durzi nearly had one pic.twitter.com/xIIrJfEi3B
Kings power play, Marner shorthanded chance. I’ll say this for Kämpf, he’s always playing hard and winning battles. He’s been in stark contrast to the rest of the team this week. Oh, and Marner missed his shot.
Kampf grabs the puck, works the boards and sends Marner pic.twitter.com/nIMgd5rYqG— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
The Leafs were in their own zone a lot to start the game. Partially because the Kings got a power play, but also from failed clears by the Leafs and needing to spend a lot of time working their way out for offense. And when offense came, they weren’t backing the defenders off and couldn’t sustain pressure.
one of many failed breakouts that led to continued pressure for the Kings so far pic.twitter.com/cdV8zTGzcR— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
Busted, washed up, brick hands, on the back nine John Tavares opened the scoring for the Leafs on the power play! Marner’s initial shot was deflected wide, but Tavares used his quick hands to collect the puck, scoop it to the angle he needed, and flipped the puck into the net before the Kings goalie (Peterson) could move all the way back from going the wrong way on the shot.
JOHN TAVARES 🚨— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
beats him to the post! pic.twitter.com/ZmNMmWN9Y6
JT's power play power continues pic.twitter.com/iUfnzAAYCM— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
Leafs got another power play near the end of the period when Lizotte was called for tripping. He and Simmonds did a bit of shoving and tripping at each other after the whistle. Nylander had two chances on the power play. Two good looks. His first shot went a tad high and his second was blocked.
two chances for Nylander on that power play— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 29, 2022
one goes off the post and the other is blocked pic.twitter.com/gFqAMeDJFP
Shots were 5-17 at 5v5 in the period. Not good, and definitely reflective on their first half. Second half was a little calmer, but the power plays helped there. The Leafs were giving Samsonov some help as they blocked five shots and kept all but a few shots to the point.
With Holl in the box, Král got a chance on the penalty kill. He made a positive pass in the neutral zone, and then in front of his own net he blocked a cross-crease pass and moved the puck back north. So far the young defender’s been quiet and responsible. I like him.
good work by Kral in front of the net pic.twitter.com/0B2SKagC29— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
On the next faceoff while still on the power play, Kempe beat Samsonov with a one-timer. Vilardi stole Samsonov’s stick, but it wasn’t penalizable.
Adrian Kempe ties it pic.twitter.com/Ef5EzdmAFV— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Holl with another penalty. His second of the period. And another power play goal for the Kings. The Leafs just got completely eaten up (Král was caught in the middle). And it was all stemmed from an Engvall giveaway on his own side of the centre line.
Viktor Arvidsson makes it 2-1 pic.twitter.com/nc0xV5A5zb— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Engvall...— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Why did you do that? pic.twitter.com/L1ESdEH0G1
Despite making an excellent save while on his belly, the Leafs didn’t bother to support Ilya Samsonov as the Kings stol the pick right back, took a couple rebounds, and scored to increase their lead again. Justin Holl again doing butt-all.
Gabriel Vilardi. 3-1 pic.twitter.com/uFtZ3wP1Zz— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
can't clear the puck, can't recover it in the defensive zone— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
goal against pic.twitter.com/kwdQ0pcWuT
A good shift from the third line and third pair, and it’s Engvall that scores. Kämpf and Gio with the assists. Gio especially just kept throwing the puck on net, allowing good things to happen.
Pierre Engvall gets one back 🚨— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Leafs within one pic.twitter.com/O6HqhElTzl
Giordano and Kampf keep the pucks alive— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Engvall buries it pic.twitter.com/2RHf08Rv00
Engvall cut it to 3-2. Failed clear and turnover by Durzi led to Leafs possession and some scrambling by Kings.— Eric Stephens (@icemancometh) October 30, 2022
A marginally better period for the Leafs as they led in shots 16-13, but Holl took two penalties and the kill went goose egg on both, giving the Leafs the deficit they carried into the third. Shot quality still on the Leafs side, however.
Fiala got away on a break and scored early in the period. Sandin had control of the puck going back in the neutral zone but was cleanly stripped and couldn’t recover.
Kevin Fiala. 4-2 pic.twitter.com/sHSYrhon5X— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Sandin gets stripped of the puck pic.twitter.com/WunKdNKUBi— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) October 30, 2022
Leafs pulled the goalie with four minutes to go. Matthews wasn’t on the ice for the chance because he took a penalty while on the power play. Excellent decision-making from him.
With two minutes to go, the Leafs were hemmed in their own zone. At least they kept things consistent.
With a minute to go, Marner scored with a high stick, while he got high-sticked in the face. Keefe didn’t review, but to be fair he didn’t have a case. And you can’t review Marner getting high-sticked in the face.
Tavares saved a goal on the backcheck.
With half a minute left, Carbery took a timeout for the Leafs so he can draw a play (little late, bud) and the Kings arena played “Baby” by you know who.
On the bright side, no former Leafs or Leafs prospects scored.