Leafs Postgame: Nothing Was The Same, Except Everything

Jeff Veillette (Jeffler)
March 25 2014 08:35PM

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James Reimer has finally been cast off to a far away land, also known as the bench! The Leafs' prayers have been answered! The season has been saved!  After all, the team plays better when he's on the ice! 

Somebody get me an eighteen wheeler. The final score was 5-3 St. Louis, and it's a miracle that it was that close.

The Rundown

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"Where's the puck?"

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"Oh we lost it again"

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"Yeah whatever, it's David Backes, not Brett Hull, just leave him alone"

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"If we block Bernier's view, I bet he'll make a sick save by natural reflex"

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"Reimer's fault"

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David Clarkson has twice as many fights this year (8) as he does goals (4).

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At least they can score on defencemen.

Why The Leafs Lost

amazing

Why The Leafs Really Lost

fenwick


  • To be fair, the situation eventually got better and the Leafs went from taking 18.8% of the game's attempted shots to 36%. Still, that's Just OK awful.
  • The Leafs allowed 23 shots in the first period. There have been ten games this year where the Leafs didn't take that many shots in the entire game.
  • Once again, the Leafs scored less than four goals. They're one of just two teams to not do so in regulation this month. You can't expect your goalie to be rock solid in every game. Forcing them to let in two or less requires them to have a three-star worthy performance at minimum.
  • Jonathan Bernier would have needed a 0.959 SV% to win tonight. He was still pretty solid (especially since he was just returning from injury, but a couple of those goals weren't so hot.
  • Mind you, the defence was of no help. Constantly out of position, often counter-productive, let the Blues walk in and control the play, and pulled off a whopping 13 giveaways.
  • Adding in tonight's 49 against, the Leafs are on pace to give up 2966 shots this season. That's third highest in NHL history, by the way.

It's the same stuff that happens every night. You're all used to either accepting it or ignoring it right now. What you can't ignore is that now that the goalies aren't playing like robots and everybody's sticks aren't made of gold, the team is getting a sudden reality check.

You Can't Ignore This Either

wooo

They're now on the outside looking in.

Blue Warrior

Phil Kessel had a gorgeous play to get an assist on the van Riemsdyk goal, but more importantly, he's the blue warrior for being as good as he is now, in his prime age, seeing this team, and saying "I'd like to commit to this team for eight years and not even take all that much money".

Silver Lining

The Caps lost in a shootout and Detroit/Columbus didn't go to overtime.

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Evgeny Kuznetsov, secret Leafs fan

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I bring news about the Toronto Marlies, opinions about the Toronto Maple Leafs, and a bunch of ridiculous thoughts about everything else.
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#1 Alex
March 25 2014, 08:49PM
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kesselkadri wrote:

Good summary. I would add there was a momentum switch after Clarkson fight which motivated the leafs to score two goals in the third period.

I thought it was smart of Carlyle to play the 4th line to start the third period to keep that momentum going for which Gunnar finally scored.

But I'm not all happy with Carlyle as something that has bothered me a while with Carlyle is that this recent leaf skid occurred after Mclaren was waived. Losing Mclaren effects the winning attitude of the team and I hope Mclaren is called up and we wave Bodie or one of the other minor players.

lol just stop

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#2 Steve
March 25 2014, 08:56PM
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I think kesselkadri just gave me a nosebleed.

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#3 TGT23
March 25 2014, 10:10PM
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Alright, REIMERFAN, I'm making amends.

While I still believe Reimer was not very good in his part of the losing streak, and while I still feel he let many soft goals in... This team is beyond help.

Proven tonight where our starter had a .917 save percentage in a game that saw him allow four goals. To get a .917 and to allow that many goals means you're facing a ridiculous amount of shots.

49, to be exact.

I can;t stress that enough. You NEVER see a goalie have a .917 (which is above league average) in a game where he allows four goals. And yet, here we are.

This team's "defense" is ridiculously soft. I was at the game tonight and as I was watching I kept my eyes on the Blues and all I was thinking was "why is he open?" every 15 seconds it seemed.

Reimer is obviously not to blame. He never was. He wasn't great but Carlyle's "scheme" was worse. You cannot allow 20+ shots in the first and expect to win.

Not ever.

And because of Carlyle we've lost Reimer's confidence, our playoff spot, and perhaps have even stunted the development of our young D who think that this is how an NHL D-man has to play.

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#4 Jeremy Ian
March 25 2014, 08:48PM
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I miss last year. That was fun.

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#5 STAN
March 25 2014, 09:42PM
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Captain Pylon strikes again. Another seven seasons of this hapless, mistake-prone, sluggish non-leader.

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#6 Jeremy Ian
March 25 2014, 08:57PM
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Steve wrote:

I think kesselkadri just gave me a nosebleed.

Could have been worse -- like pissing yourself laughing.

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#7 TGT23
March 26 2014, 02:12AM
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@STAN

Okay, let's play this game. You talk a lot of garbage about Phaneuf so let's see how great a hockey mind you are.

Hypothetical Situation:

We trade Dion. End of the season, at the draft, get some picks, nothing that is going to help us next season but maybe pieces for the future. Most importantly, we're out of the contract.

Also out a top pairing D-man, but whatever. Your world, not mine.

So, what do you think the team should do?

Who is your top pairing? Gardiner and Gunnerson? Gleason, the bigger, slower pylon?

Do we sign a FA? Will a FA even bother looking at this team consider we've just run Phaneuf out of town, Reimer, and likely at some point Clarkson. Who is going to sign here? Who is even available?

Kostka, Colaiacovo, Murray, Boyle, Timonen, Markov, Hainsey, Niskanen...... Only top line oairing there is Markov and he's not leaving Montreal.

Most those guys aren't long-term players, either.

So tell me, with all your Phaneuf hate, what would you do if you could just get rid of him and use his cap and roster spot for someone else.

Dazzle us with your genius.

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#8 willbur
March 25 2014, 09:09PM
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@kesselkadri

Wow! So it is true. You can't fix stupid.

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#9 Reimanfan
March 26 2014, 09:55AM
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TGT23 wrote:

Alright, REIMERFAN, I'm making amends.

While I still believe Reimer was not very good in his part of the losing streak, and while I still feel he let many soft goals in... This team is beyond help.

Proven tonight where our starter had a .917 save percentage in a game that saw him allow four goals. To get a .917 and to allow that many goals means you're facing a ridiculous amount of shots.

49, to be exact.

I can;t stress that enough. You NEVER see a goalie have a .917 (which is above league average) in a game where he allows four goals. And yet, here we are.

This team's "defense" is ridiculously soft. I was at the game tonight and as I was watching I kept my eyes on the Blues and all I was thinking was "why is he open?" every 15 seconds it seemed.

Reimer is obviously not to blame. He never was. He wasn't great but Carlyle's "scheme" was worse. You cannot allow 20+ shots in the first and expect to win.

Not ever.

And because of Carlyle we've lost Reimer's confidence, our playoff spot, and perhaps have even stunted the development of our young D who think that this is how an NHL D-man has to play.

Hey TGT23, not a problem thanks for the nice post here, that's all I was trying to say was it was unfair to blame Reimer for all that has happened within this stretch since LA KINGS WIN, which Reims held his own and stoped all the shots and won us 2 points, if he was as bad as everyone thinks, he would have lost that game as well.....

If you look at the first couple games, Reims did great as far as I could hear (radio broadcast) yes de did have 3 goals period 1 but that was the end of it, the team had over 40 mins to tie it up and it was the same in the next game as well they had over 30 or mor minutes to tie it up again and the it happened again with the Habs and the last game where they pulled him for Drew with another 30 plus minutes to tie it up...and it goes on and on........3 goals I agree with this team is not a good thing because they can't SCORE more than 2 goals on any giving night or if their lucky a third goal but that's it.....so it doesn't matter what Goalie stands on his head on any giving night the odds against this team it the Goalie doesn't stop all the shots or doesn't let in more than 2...how high of expectations is that to lay on the Goalies???? if there was nights where the shots on goal are only 20-30 shots each game maybe...but this is sad...and even last night, for Bernier to have to come back and fend off as many shots as he did in period 1 was awful....but you have to admit he looked confused and lost at times....and let in some softies early in the game as well....

What I didn't think was fair following the 1st period was the radio guys during the break comment on how "if it was Reimer in the net it would have been 4-1...thats uncalled for and unprofessional.......

I To blame RC but I could go on forever..I will leave this thought.......If RC had not detested Reimer so much, and had taken some of the load off Bernier and kept Reimer in the game so to speak, I honetly beleive this would have been a different situartion right now..And BERNIER MAY NEVER HAVE GOT INJURED AT IN THE KINGS GAME, IF HE WOULD HAVE STARTED REIMER, BECAUSE BERNIER ALREADY HAD A SITUATION WITH HIS KNEE THE NIGHT BEFORE....RC played him anyways. Bernier got hurt, you lost him, and than RC slowlt destroyed Reimer....and now what have you got???/

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#10 kesselkadri
March 25 2014, 08:44PM
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Good summary. I would add there was a momentum switch after Clarkson fight which motivated the leafs to score two goals in the third period.

I thought it was smart of Carlyle to play the 4th line to start the third period to keep that momentum going for which Gunnar finally scored.

But I'm not all happy with Carlyle as something that has bothered me a while with Carlyle is that this recent leaf skid occurred after Mclaren was waived. Losing Mclaren effects the winning attitude of the team and I hope Mclaren is called up and we wave Bodie or one of the other minor players.

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#11 TGT23
March 26 2014, 06:42PM
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@Cam Thornton

It isn't entirely unwarranted, but to sit there and act like a contract extension for your captain and best d-man is a bad thing we'll have to suffer through is beyond ridiculous.

While Dion has his issues, he's the best d-man on this team and if he were a FA in the group that will become available... He'd be the best in the crop.

Someone, I can't remember who, said; if Dion Phaneuf were on a different team and became a FA, and the Leafs signed him, the fans would be dancing in the streets.

Because it is true.

If we didn't have Dion this teams D would be so much worse then it is. And if they signed him at the end of the season he'd be seen as a dramatic improvement over who we have...

But, because he is on the team, he is taken for granted.

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#12 Matt
March 25 2014, 09:04PM
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Didn't go to regulation? How is that possible?

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#13 TheCheeseFish21
March 25 2014, 11:54PM
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I think that if the leafs get a game like 7-0 against a team that is good to change the momentum so that they can win games

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#14 Cam Thornton
March 26 2014, 06:21AM
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@TGT23

It's not like the Phaneuf hate is entirely unwarranted. While he does play top minutes against top pairings, it's not hard to see he's struggled this year. It's not to go out of the way to find hate for him, but general blunders that come up big. I've been a big Phaneuf fan, but man, that first Backes goal, while still not saved by Bernier, is 100% Dion's fault. He has the entire ice to shoot at the clear the puck down the ice on the PK, but instead, looks for the perfect shot and has a turnover at his own blue line.

It's not that Dion hasn't proven to be one of the Leaf's best players, but mistakes like that just can't happen, especially to a team clinging (or at least was clinging) to a playoff spot.

Lastly, based off that list you had named above of potential players to bring in for top pairing defense, although aging, guys like Boyle and Timonen would make great additions to the blue line (if enticed to sign). Niskanen has picked up his game a lot too, not to top pairing status, but again, not a bad addition as a 2nd pairing Dman

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#15 ThatMapleLeafsFan
March 26 2014, 05:22PM
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Just came across this today. The 2011-12 Maple Leafs finished with 80 points. The 2013-2014 edition are currently stuck at... 80 points. I'm normally not one for believing statistics but what if the leafs have a problem passing 80 points? Just a thought since this losing streak has driven I think most insane

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