LGD: Leafs Get The Blues

For a little while there, it looked like the Toronto Maple Leafs were beginning to turn things around. Climbing out of the league basement and, dare I say, within striking distance of a wildcard position, things have since fallen apart again.

With just one win in their last six games, the Leafs are once again a bottom feeder team, dead last in the Atlantic Division and 28th in the league. If you were hoping for success this year (wait, you weren’t, were you?), you’re going to be disappointed. 

But if you were hoping for another year dedicated to rebuilding, you got it. 

And if you were hoping for another high draft pick, well, the St. Louis Blues can probably help you with that.

The Leafs

After scoring just one goal in their last two games, Coach Babcock put the lines through a blender this morning and will be icing a much different-looking lineup tonight.

The biggest change is the dynamic duo of Nazem Kadri and Leo Komarov, who are now being paired with usual centreman Peter Holland on the second line while Tyler Bozak and P.A. Parenteau join James van Riemsdyk on the number one unit.

leafs

The Blues

St. Louis used to strike me as a very good and solid team that lacked that elite talent to really put them over. As good as they are, Alex Steen and David Backes just don’t get me all that excited. 

But now they have 23-year old Vladimir Tarasenko, who scores goals pretty much at will, and I’m legitimately scared of the Blues. Not only him, but there’s also a couple really nice looking youngsters playing on the lower lines, like Robby Fabbri and Dmitrij Jaskin, and that’s almost unfair.

blues

Starting Goaltenders

As we wrote earlier today, the Leafs’ crease is a little messy right now. After coming back and putting up a great effort against the Minnesota Wild on Thursday, James Reimer is back on the shelf after reaggravating his undisclosed injury. With Jonathan Bernier still on his AHL conditioning stint, that means Garret Sparks will be backed up by Antoine Bibeau tonight to form an all-Marlies tandem. Good thing the Blues aren’t like, a really good hockey team, or whatever.

At the other end of the ice, Jake Allen starts in goal for the Blues. He’s been very good, having solidified his hold of the starter’s job over Brian Elliott with a .926 SV% and a 2.13 GAA in 19 games this season. Good thing the Leafs aren’t like, a really bad offensive team, or whatever.

What to Watch For…

  • Roman Polak will get a chance to say ‘hello’ to his former teammates tonight as they skate around him and score a goal or eight.
  • Colton Parayko, the 6’5 right-handed 22-year old on the Blues’ blueline who’s busted out as a rookie with 13 points in 24 games. The kid has been turning a bunch of heads this season.
  • Frank Corrado… No, just kidding.
  • The drive for the bottom five is alive and well. I must admit that there will be some who will render their leaf garments and weep and gnash their teeth but let us remember while the leafs poor cousins the playoff bound Toronto Raptors have lived out on the road the leafs 18 wheeler is being shined up to live on the road in the second half of the year driving through those icy mountain roads with all those cliffs awaiting.

    As I’ve stated we all knew what was coming this year. so enjoy your favourite beverage, whether wine , beer or hard liquor, relax put the fire place on and sit back and accept the guaranteed pain.

    Oh sure it is kind of like getting that route canal done without any freezing but before you know it, it will be mid June and our management will have another high draft pick to rebuild the club.

  • Gary Empey

    Hey Toronto Media ,

    Yes this is directed at you but of course to all Toronto in General that
    are the so called Leaf fans.

    Pisses you off Edmonton got Mcdavid ? How on earth are you going to feel when we get Auston. You slam The Oilers, yet your sad sack crap hockey team has not had a sniff , thats right not a sniff in what ? 55 years give or take. So please shut up , go cry and worry about your own crap team that has been managed poorly for decades. Remember Ballard ? you guys were a joke and still are. So suck it Toronto , especially the whining media. You are not the centre of the universe , your team sucks, the raptors suck, the Jays Choked, Should i mention the Argo’s ?

    Shut up. PS – The Habs make you look like , well , yourselves actually.

    You are a sports Team Joke. Phil must be so glad to get out of that
    desperate, we wish we were American city.

    EAT IT T.O. Especially your media no nothing clowns.

    PS – MCDAVID.

    Nuff said.