Leafs postgame - Well, that escalated quickly

Cam Charron
January 23 2014 09:16PM

Pictured above is a win expectancy graph. They're very popular in baseball and football, used to determine each team's odds of winning the game at certain points. What I've mocked up is approximately what the Leafs win expectancy was tonight. Fell down early, caught back up, and then got to about a third of the way through the second period before a big "KER-SPLAT!"

There isn't much to write about here. I assume plenty of people will have their #hotsportstake reserved for the actions of Colt Knorr, Nazem Kadri and Antoine Roussel, and I'm sure many others will talk about how the Dallas Stars Twitter team roasted the Leafs and their association with Justin Bieber tonight. I might also expect Steve Dangle to get into it in the LFR. These postgame thingies are normally brief and we usually have something humorous to talk about, but, er, not tonight apparently. 

No, tonight, enjoy my stick figures, and the fact the Leafs are 6-1 in the last seven games. They got mauled by Dallas in Dallas, dropping a game 7-1.

THE RUNDOWN 

In such a lousy game, it makes no sense to really drag down specifically players, but we'll do our best to the point the game got way out of whack. At the start of the game, the teams traded chances early, with Tyler Bozak, Alex Chiasson and Carter Ashton all coming so close to making the score 1-0 for their respective teams, but it wasn't to be. The score opened when Nazem Kadri and Cody Franson connected on an awful clearing attempt, giving Jamie Benn a wide open shot from just under the Bowman Line. He has a really good shot, and made it 1-0. 

Perhaps the only positive point of the night came seconds later with Nik Kulemin re-directing a Carl Gunnarsson shot:

After that, though, the wheels fell off. Cody Eakin, on a two-on-one, took a shot that hit Jake Gardiner's shin pads and bounced right back on to his stick (incidentally, "Corsi" was originally developed to measure a goalie's workload in a night, the idea being that a goalie had to set himself for every shot attempt, not just those on goal. Eakin's original attempt was the perfect fake—it made Jonathan Bernier go down to the ice, and then back up to reset himself, but Eakin's second shot made its way past Bernier as he was coming up).

In the second, the wheels fell off completely. Valeri Nichushkin tipped in a long Jamie Benn shot, and that goal caused Randy Carlyle to pull Jonathan Bernier for the second time in Bernier's last eight starts. It looked like it may have hit something else, but either way, no real chance. Carlyle responded to that goal by putting his fourth line on the ice, giving Colt Knorr a chance to take a stupid penalty, which the Stars scored on thanks to a Shawn Horcoff breakaway, who somehow made his way behind both Gunnarsson and Dion Phaneuf. The real question: with all the talent the Stars have, why the blazes is Horcoff even on their powerplay? 

At 4-1, the Leafs caught a break with Ryan Garbutt tripping up Carter Ashton, and they perhaps had the chance to bring the scoreline back to within reach with a quick powerplay goal, but a bad turnover by Mason Raymond set up another odd-man rush and a Rich Peverley shorthanded goal. 

Another baseball convention, other than win expectancy graphs, is showing a video of a shrimp running on a treadmill after a walk ends the game with the bases loaded and the score tied:

I couldn't help but think this video summed up the Leafs tonight. 

WHY THE LEAFS LOST 

Couldn't skate, couldn't defend, couldn't score and couldn't get a save. Jonathan Bernier was brilliant in the teams' first game against one another back in Toronto on December 5—he stopped 48 of 50 and pretty well won the game for the Maple Leafs. Bernier stopped just 10 of 13 shots in this game (.769 save percentage) and Reimer stopped just 11 of 15 (.733). Feels weird to blame the goaltenders after all they've done for the Leafs, but if they aren't on their game… well, this is sort of what happens:

 

If we're looking for positives, the Leafs held Dallas to under 30 shots? (Unfortunately, Toronto generated just 25 of their own and despite a hectic first, Kari Lehtonen only Let-one-in [get it???] and didn't have a lot to do on the night). 

BLUE WARRIOR

Kudos to Justin Bieber for his arrest yesterday, essentially taking all the heat off the Leafs tonight. This is what will be the focus on the highlight shows tonight:

And also this:

Touché, Dallas Stars. Touché.

NUMB3RS AND NOTES: 

Here's the Fenwick Graph:

The game got out of hand midway through the first.

Still, this is only the first loss in seven games for Toronto. They have a chance to erase that in Winnipeg Saturday. Streaks happen over the course of a season, and so do bad losses. Let's not sweat them so much, but have the ability to poke a little fun at what happened in Dallas. We're all in this (somewhat) together.

Considering for the LGD today I used one Will Ferrell meme, it's appropriate to end the post with another...

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Cam Charron is a BC hockey fan that writes about hockey on many different websites including this one.
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#1 kesselkadri
January 23 2014, 10:36PM
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I think the big story is that Reimer's goaltending is becoming more and more disappointing. He keeps muffing his opportunity to steal the net back by just being awful in net when relieving Bernier. Bernier hasn't earned the starter as much as Reimer is just gifting him the starting role. Come on Reimer.

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#2 DarrylY
January 23 2014, 10:38PM
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That game was a joke. A classic display of Carlyle coaching tactics. Orr gets on ice, takes brutally stupid and needless penalty away from the play, which leads to a back-breaking goal to put the Stars up 4-1.

Naturally, Carlyle, preacher of accountability, punisher of mistakes, adequately indicates what he thought of Orr's stupid mistake by stapling him to the ben...oh nevermind, there's Orr out there one minute after that costly Dallas goal.

Ashton draws a penalty, but Orr was out there too, so Carlyle naturally rewards Orr with another shift right after the PP expires and the 4th line draws another penalty to get the Leafs a PP to potentially get back in the game! But wait, Orr, once again, takes a brutally stupid penalty for no reason whatsoever to negate what could have been a Leafs powerplay, and then, because why wouldn't they, the Stars score on the ensuing 4-on-4.

Then of course, 1 shift into the 3rd period, Randy figures now is probably yet again another great opportunity to send out good old colton to really try to get some momentum, where in just his 10th shift of the game, he gets easily goaded into taking his 3rd penalty, while at least taking an actual NHL hockey player down with him.

So really, he did in the end help the Leafs out by giving them a 12 minute span where he couldn't be on the ice actively hurting the team as he always is when he's "skating". Gotta give credit where it's due right?

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#3 kesselkadri
January 23 2014, 10:41PM
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For those wanting Randy to give the 4th line more minutes to rest the three other lines so they can recover and be more effective in the game, well a 7 to 1 loss is not going to convince Carlyle that those other lines will perform any better.

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#4 DarrylY
January 23 2014, 10:43PM
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@kesselkadri

Pointing out Reimer's play (or Bernier's for that matter) tonight after the display that was put on the ice is like pointing out a singer missing a note if that singer was trying to sing while...I dunno...playing in net for the Leafs with no pads behind a lineup composed entirely of Colton Orrs

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#6 Kanuunankuula
January 23 2014, 11:47PM
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"Kari Lehtonen only Let-one-in [get it???]"

Also, Leaf = lehti in finnish, so Lehtonen = leafson etc typical surname. Coincidence?

Bad game, wished that they'd started Optimus Reims, I think that he'd a had a better game if he started in net. It's becomming more apparent to me Bernier can't do a lot of games in a short amount of time. Colton Orr on ice alot doesn't help though.

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#7 Steve Dangle
January 24 2014, 12:14AM
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kesselkadri wrote:

I think the big story is that Reimer's goaltending is becoming more and more disappointing. He keeps muffing his opportunity to steal the net back by just being awful in net when relieving Bernier. Bernier hasn't earned the starter as much as Reimer is just gifting him the starting role. Come on Reimer.

If Reimer stopped every shot they still would have lost 3-1.

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#8 kesselkadri
January 24 2014, 08:05AM
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@Steve Dangle

I'm looking at a sample size of more then one game with Reimer. His goaltending hasn't been that impressive to inspire confidence and warrant more starts. I want Reimer to succeed but he is muffing his chances.

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#9 MaxPower417
January 24 2014, 10:53AM
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That graph is pure gold.

My favourite part is the stick figure after the Leafs little surge where he appears to be dancing right before...well...we all saw the game.

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#10 Gardiner-Reilly
January 24 2014, 03:54PM
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Good thing I didn't watch this one.

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#11 Reimerfan
January 25 2014, 06:30AM
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kesselkadri wrote:

I'm looking at a sample size of more then one game with Reimer. His goaltending hasn't been that impressive to inspire confidence and warrant more starts. I want Reimer to succeed but he is muffing his chances.

I am amazed how Leaf Fans are so hard on Reims this year, he's gone from being the one to bring the Leafs into the playoffs for the first time in over eight years ro a bench warmer, both Reims and Ben were a great team who were on their own had no Veteran Goalie on this team to groove with and learn with, yet they took this team further than its been in a long time. Leave Reims alone under all the crap hes been through from this team, the fans, the management etc its any wonder he has any game left....kinda hard to being giving the reins only to be slaped with Bernier and throw to the wolfs. Reimer when on his game is better than Beriner will ever be, and unlike Beriner hes a team player and more personable and media friendly than Beriner..takes the fault on himself dons't look for excuses... GO REIMS GO.....it's hard to prove anything or even get his game back when he's not aloud to go out there and play 5 or 6 games to get the grove back, unlike beriner who has played Reims total of games and lost over half of what he's won, thats why this team is where they aren't from last year, because of Beriner not Reimer.... So put the blame where it belongs...

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#12 Reimerfan
January 25 2014, 06:32AM
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@kesselkadri

I am amazed how Leaf Fans are so hard on Reims this year, he's gone from being the one to bring the Leafs into the playoffs for the first time in over eight years ro a bench warmer, both Reims and Ben were a great team who were on their own had no Veteran Goalie on this team to groove with and learn with, yet they took this team further than its been in a long time. Leave Reims alone under all the crap hes been through from this team, the fans, the management etc its any wonder he has any game left....kinda hard to being giving the reins only to be slaped with Bernier and throw to the wolfs. Reimer when on his game is better than Beriner will ever be, and unlike Beriner hes a team player and more personable and media friendly than Beriner..takes the fault on himself dons't look for excuses... GO REIMS GO.....it's hard to prove anything or even get his game back when he's not aloud to go out there and play 5 or 6 games to get the grove back, unlike beriner who has played Reims total of games and lost over half of what he's won, thats why this team is where they aren't from last year, because of Beriner not Reimer.... So put the blame where it belongs...

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#13 Reimerfan
January 25 2014, 06:44AM
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kesselkadri wrote:

I think the big story is that Reimer's goaltending is becoming more and more disappointing. He keeps muffing his opportunity to steal the net back by just being awful in net when relieving Bernier. Bernier hasn't earned the starter as much as Reimer is just gifting him the starting role. Come on Reimer.

Thank God!!!! Reims has big shoulders.....how can you take from Reims all that he;s accomplished for and with this team...oh how fast Leafs fans and management turn on their only real reason they got to the play=offs last ear its wasn't the great D game don't think so...........

I am amazed how Leaf Fans are so hard on Reims this year, he's gone from being the one to bring the Leafs into the playoffs for the first time in over eight years ro a bench warmer, both Reims and Ben were a great team who were on their own had no Veteran Goalie on this team to groove with and learn with, yet they took this team further than its been in a long time. Leave Reims alone under all the crap hes been through from this team, the fans, the management etc its any wonder he has any game left....kinda hard to being giving the reins only to be slaped with Bernier and throw to the wolfs. Reimer when on his game is better than Beriner will ever be, and unlike Beriner hes a team player and more personable and media friendly than Beriner..takes the fault on himself dons't look for excuses... GO REIMS GO.....it's hard to prove anything or even get his game back when he's not aloud to go out there and play 5 or 6 games to get the grove back, unlike beriner who has played Reims total of games and lost over half of what he's won, thats why this team is where they aren't from last year, because of Beriner not Reimer.... So put the blame where it belongs...

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