To say that watching the Leafs get shutout by the Detroit Red Wings is difficult to watch is understandable, but make no mistake – this was one of the most unwatchable games I’ve ever watched. Did you tape it? Going to watch it later? Don’t. There are many more enjoyable activities you could be doing instead, such as paying the bills, or sorting the recycling.
More than anything, it was the penalties that ruined this game. You’d think that an endless parade to the box for both teams would have at least generated some offence, but not a whole lot happened, especially for the Leafs.
Both teams got eight, count ’em, eight power plays, and half of them were questionable or completely wrong calls to begin with. The Wings put two goals on eight shots past James Reimer with the man advantage, with the Leafs only managing six shots on their power plays. Oh boy.
Detroit’s first goal came courtesy of Nick Jensen’s screened blast from the point about halfway through the second frame. In the third, Riley Sheahan would tip a Ryan Sproul point shot and bury the rebound before Reimer could even track the puck. Tomas Jurco would mercifully pot an empty netter with a little over a minute to go, giving us something else to talk about.
It’d be easy to say Jake Gardiner, who was pushing the play all night, but I’m going with someone else tonight.
He only played 8:51, but Brandon Kozun was one of the only guys who looked like he was having an alright game. The Detroit broadcast team made mention of Kozun’s speed on multiple occasions, and despite being 11th in ice time amongst Leafs forwards, he still led the group with 4 shots.
Also, shout out to Stuart Percy for surviving this…
- Speaking of… with David Booth injured and Josh Leivo still exempt from Waivers, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kozun starts the season with the main club.
- The Leafs made a handful of roster cuts prior to the game, including Petter Granberg and Petri Kontiola, both of whom were thought to crack the lineup.
- With Granberg back in the AHL and Henrik Tallinder released from his PTO, by golly it looks like Korbinian Holzer will start the season with the Leafs. He hasn’t looked particularly great, but if he isn’t thrown on the top pairing again, it isn’t out of the realm of possibility that Holzer becomes a capable 6-7 guy on the blueline.
- Next game is Friday at 7:30 when the Leafs host the Red Wings in Toronto. Be there or be square.