The Leafs defence looked exposed and fragile in Game 1. And it also looked like it was on the forwards to fix that.
Well. They fixed it all right.
This is how it happened:
Leafs start out energetic, and they're controlling the puck well enough to make even me happy. And then, there's this:
Kerfoot on the fourth line is a cheat code.
See, I think Keefe is in a genuine conundrum with the power play because....
Why would you take any of those guys off PP1? I think that's why he's sort of job-sharing O'Reilly and Nylander some of the time.
Florida takes another penalty because they just do dumb stuff.
The game degenerated (upgraded?) to a bit of bing, bang,
And so naturally, Michael Bunting ends up in a headlock.
A hit on Liljegren turns the puck over, and then it's in.
Period ends 2-1 Leafs
Matthew Knies not on the bench to start the second. This was in the first:
If that isn't bad enough:
19 seconds in. Tie game.
A few seconds later:
3-2 Florida. (Count the stupid plays by Leafs – warning, you may need to take your socks off for this one.)
The Leafs are not controlling the puck enough to make me happy anymore.
Tired of hearing how Timothy Liljegren "has to find a way" to not get outplayed in the defensive zone. He can't. He hasn't got a way. It's not an effort thing. It's not some weird happenstance. It's his big weakness. Maybe too big.
Brought to you by another turnover caused by him in the corner, and the stupid broadcast afraid to say it plainly that Florida knows they can take him easy.
AWWW Damn. Nylander hits the post.
Florida gets a wide open corner and they shoot it wide or this game might be out of reach. Leafs just getting owned here.
"Faceoff won, knocked off the stick of Bunting." Leafs can't keep the puck in the Florida zone long enough to do anything but get ready to race down after the Florida transition.
John Tavares with an excellent chance, but nope.
Kerfoot with a good chance. I'm getting less annoyed. A little less.
The crowd think they've scored, but all we've got is a Florida player (Josh Mahura) bleeding like crazy from a puck off the face.
Sam Bennet (yeah, the guy who put Knies out of the game) cross-checks Bunting right in the ear.
Leafs can't keep the puck, even with the extra man. Forty-one seconds left before they get their first shot.
Leafs get hemmed in right after the power play because every single one of them who has the puck is checked off the puck along the boards. Florida just goes around the perimeter forcing bad passes and no exit strategy out of everyone.
I'm back to annoyed.
The Leafs top line played amazing hockey in period one, and failed repeatedly at the basics in period two. Everyone in blue was overwhelmed by Florida's checking game.
And the brilliant little [redacted] take a stupid penalty at the horn. And who was it? Auston [redacted] Matthews.
What a pile of shit that period was.
I'd tell you about the power play, but to be honest, it's garbage night and the cat threw up on the bed. No, don't scroll up, this isn't a seldo recap. Sometimes we all get a seldo life, though.
Okay, Leafs, fine. So you do a nice flurry of offensive chaos of your own. How nice for you. You're still the ones who threw up on the bed. You know, metaphorically speaking.
Five minutes to go, I've got a rude headline, a rude picture, and I'm listening to my "so irritated with you" playlist.
Bless their hearts, the crowd is up and waving the towels. I'm going to try to be like them.