Welcome to the St. Patrickâ€™s Day edition of the Game In 10. Four Leaf clovers may be lucky, but nothing is accomplished without effort. Continue for a Leafs game thatâ€™s more vanilla than Ice Ice Baby.
1 â€“ The Leafs are 31-31-10 and this was not a good game, the team was flat as a pancake, flavorless and without jam.
3 â€“ Brown and Duco put up their dukes in the battle of two Mikes in an energetic fight, something you might expect from middleweights, not a lot of punches landed as Duco gets the takedown but Brown wins the punch count. Keith Aulie is just a monster out there, ragdolling Ryan Carter after his huge hit on Grabovski. I love the timing of this kidâ€™s fights, itâ€™s emotional, itâ€™s momentum shifting, itâ€™s everything fighting in the NHL should be.
4 â€“ Surprisingly, Florida responded with a good level of pugnacity and truculence of their own, which made this game bearable to watch. On the bright white blue side, Luke Schenn played well, which means he plowed his way through Panther bodies like farmer Bobâ€™s tractor. He really seems to feed of those big hits and his game noticeably improves whenever he throws one, much like the case with Ovechkin and scoring.
5 â€“ You know your PK is bad if you let in 2 PP goals to a team thatâ€™s 29th in the league in PP%. Surprisingly, Floridaâ€™s PK% is sixth in the league, but even that doesnâ€™t justify the poor excuse for the PP units weâ€™ve been icing throughout the season. Iâ€™ve constantly suggested that if we miss the playoffs, lack of production on our PP will be the biggest nail in the coffin.
6 â€“ Lack of a legitimate puck moving defenseman means more defensive turnovers, in other news, logical things are logical.
7 â€“ So, JS Giguere was our starting goalie tonight and while Iâ€™m not suggesting Reimer should have started (he canâ€™t start every game) itâ€™s pretty obvious that the team is playing a more confident game in front of Optimus. The first Florida goal could be blamed on Giggy if thatâ€™s what youâ€™re looking for, but he was screened on the second goal and a victim to lack of defensive support on the third tally. Oh, thatâ€™s that confidence level right?
8 â€“ The speed of Floridaâ€™s forwards created problems for our big static defense. Iâ€™m not happy to say Ron Wilson was out coached in this one. Also, I stopped counting how many times our team got shut out this season in fear of a league record
9 â€“ The one positive thing about this game were the fans, who were louder than the empty seats in the building yes, but were a tribute to Leafs Nation with their chants and support for the team. Phaneuf kneeing is just an unfortunate play, but I found it funny how no Florida player went after our captain after that play. Yes, I know heâ€™s scary.
10 â€“ Is there anything anyone can say to make you feel better after this one? No? Well I suspected as much so I’ll just wish you a happy St. Patrickâ€™s day, rebuild is the mantra. Good night.