They got what they deserved.
It was a long and winding road, but ultimately, the path led to the same result.
Shayne Gostisbehere potted the game winner late in the third period on the power play as the Leafs (2-2-0) fell 4-2 to the hapless Arizona Coyotes (1-2-0).
Just moments after the Gostisbehere go-ahead goal, it appeared Alex Kerfoot had tied it up. That said, after a short review, Morgan Rielly was flagged for a hand pass and the goal was called back. For what it’s worth, the right call was made.
Meantime, former Leaf Nick Ritchie had a goal and an assist in his second game back to Scotiabank Arena since being exiled to the desert last February. The 26-year-old winger now has 13 goals in 27 total outings with the Coyotes. Erik Källgren made 15 stops in his season debut; Mitch Marner and William Nylander supplied the offence for Toronto.
Dating back to last season, the Leafs have now dropped three in a row against the Coyotes. In fact, since 2015, they’re 4-11-0 against them. That is gross.
Another Embarrassing L
If anything, what happened in the third period only made the loss worse. Full credit to them, though. When the Leafs lose, they make it count —that’s for sure. Honestly, you can easily assemble a top-10 list of embarrassing losses for this franchise over the past decade or so. And there’s plenty of serious contenders for the No. 1 spot, including tonight’s masterpiece. Simply put, there’s no way in hell a team this talented should lose or be close in a game to a roster like that. It’s unacceptable. Unfortunately, we’ve seen this episode again and again and again. With minimal repercussions.
Credit to Sheldon Keefe for throwing his lines in a blender to start the third, it actually ignited the offence a bit.
At any rate, I’d put good money on Nick Robertson making his season debut against Dallas on Thursday night, especially with his brother (Jason) in town.
Another day, another critical injury for the Leafs. The hits just keep on coming. Can you believe we’re technically not even a week into the season? Muzzin left the game in the second period and did not return due to a neck injury.
If Muzzin can’t go on Thursday night, it’s likely Victor Mete would take his place in the lineup. The former Hab was recalled from the Marlies after Matt Murray was placed on LTIR.
Staying consistent with the night as a whole, Toronto’s power play looked downright dreadful. Thanks to Nylander’s goal, however, they escaped with a 1-for-5 showing. Seriously, how could they muster just one shot on goal in five power play opportunities? It’s not like they were playing the 90s Devils or something. Burn the tape immediately.
Highlight of the night:
Point No. 900 for the captain; congrats to him!
The Leafs will be off until Thursday when they host the Dallas Stars for the fourth and final game of their four-game homestand. That will be the first of a home and home with Dallas this season, Toronto will visit American Airlines Center on December 6th. The Leafs took both meetings last season.
PSA: Don’t forget to check out ‘Leafs Morning Take’ with yours truly and Jay Rosehill every Monday to Friday morning at 11 a.m. EDT on The Nation Network YouTube page.