Dave Feschuk of the Toronto Star released an interesting article on Wednesday night pertaining to the Leafs’ James Reimer, and some worries his mother may have about his current health situation. And to be honest, it will (and should) send fans into quite the panic.
After dropping two straight lopsided games this past week, it seems the team is finally slowing down, or regressing to the mean (as many would put it). Of course we didn’t believe this first place pace was sustainable, but nor did we believe the drop-off would be so steep.
Now, I’m fully aware that it’s only two brutal outings, but combine a snake-bitten group of forwards – who shouldn’t be cold for too long, thankfully – and some horrendous goaltending, and the Leafs seem to be gearing up for their regular November routine. The only problem is, they have zero idea when Reimer can come back and bust them out of this, and December’s schedule is a hell of a lot rougher than this current month. Even with goal-scoring eventually getting back on track, they’re still taking an enormous chance by putting any hopes in the Monster, or Scrivens for that matter. So, maybe something needs to be done quickly.
That falls on Burke. Wilson can toy with the lines and try to get his players back on track as soon as possible, but with basically a cardboard cut-out between the pipes, it won’t make a lot of difference in the win column.
This is where many of the folks who were hoping for Burke to target a veteran backup tender like Jose Theodore will point and say “I told you so”, and they’re totally right. The team is basically down to hoping for Scrivens to turn things around, otherwise they’re in sorry shape. If they’re forced back in to playing Gustavsson, they may as well look elsewhere and try a trade or something. Because ‘Gus’ simply doesn’t look like a viable option at the moment.
Concussions have been the hot topic for the NHL over the past year or so, and you can sort of say the Leafs were due for something like this, but it’s a sad situation for the team, and most importantly Reimer himself. After suffering numerous head injuries in the past, there simply can’t be any rush to get him back into game action. The stakes are too high.
From The Star:
Marlene is concerned enough about Jamesâ€™s brain-injury history that she keeps a file of articles detailing the latest research on the subject.
â€œThat is my big concern, that he stays healthy,â€ she said. â€œAnd if he doesnâ€™t, what are the repercussions? What is it we should be looking for? How should it be handled? What are the best options if he does get hurt?â€
We know that concussions are about as serious as sports injuries get. While this is a situation that drives Leafs fans insane, on a real-life level this is a pretty major concern for Reimer and his family. So as long as it takes, so be it.
Back in the realm of Leafs Nation, the question is whether Burke can provide a remedy for this problem. Personally, I think he should be on the hunt for help as soon as possible. Waiting until the Leafs are five games below .500 is a terrible idea, and while messing with the team’s chemistry and success thus far may be in the back of his mind, Burke really can’t afford to let the team die by sub-par goaltending while the losses start to pile up.
On to some hockey links
Feschuk: Latest of several concussions worries Reimer’s mom (Feschuk at The Star)
Gustavsson sucks (Jon from PuckinEh)
And how would you like to regress today, Mr. Bond? (Cam Charron at The Leafs Nation)
The awkward conundrum (Jeff at LeafsHQ)
Leafs face another season stunted by sieves in net (James Mirtle – The Globe & Mail)
Leafs backup goalies under fire (Zeisberger – The Sun)
Suspect goaltending has Leafs on edge (Koreen – National Post)
Pass or fail: Stall tactic by Flyers against Lightning trap (Harrison Mooney at Puck Daddy)
Who’s got the worst shot in the NHL? (Justin Bourne at Backhand Shelf)
Enjoy the links. And if you have some of your own, toss them in the comment section.