On a special special night, where every player in a Leafs jersey wore No. 13 in warm-ups, Mats Sundin was once again welcomed home as a Leaf. Many consider him a hero and that’s the way it should be. He definitely earned his place in the rafters of the ACC because, in addition to the sublime talent and franchise record setting numbers, he had an undying loyalty and desire to win. Unfortunately, a beautiful speech and ceremony gave way to an absolute shitting of the bed by the current Leafs.
1 â€“ The Leafs are 28-22-6 and this was one of the rare evening that it mattered less. The number went right next to Armstrong and Salming. The way it should be.
2 â€“ In his speech Mats mentioned Pat Burns, Wade Belak, Igor Korolev and Alexander Karpovtsev which showed true class; the class of a man who defined our hockey team in the 13 years he spent in the hockey capital of the world.
3 â€“ The boys started pretty well, outshooting Montreal 5-2 in the first seven minutes of play. Brown was physical early and Price denied Kessel on a semi breakaway. A lot of famous well know faces of Leafsâ€™ past were in the stands. Wendel, BÃ¶rje and Sittler stood out from the crowd.
4 â€“ Brown was in Subbanâ€™s face early which was good. Flying Frenchmen my Croatian rear end, more like Ze Trappinâ€™ Frenchmen! Somewhere in Quebec, Guy Lafleur is facepalming right about now, or is he?
5 â€“ Boring as it might be, the Habs were taking away the neutral zone fairly efficiently and after our two impotent power plays which generated 0 (zero) shots, Erik Cole scores to make it 1-0 Canadiens.
6 â€“ Luke Schenn loses the puck in his own zone, Plekanec quickly gets it to Bourque and itâ€™s 2-0 Canadiens. Our third power play was an improvement. We even generated a shot. No, the power play wasn’t working tonight. 0/5.
7 â€“ Guess what? The Leafs arenâ€™t perfect on the PK in 2012. anymore. Our penalty killing streak ended in the second period as Pacioretty puts one in on a screened Reimer after a Subban point shot. Reimer was left alone to battle everything thereâ€¦
8 â€“ Lars Eller made our captain look like a pylon on his goal. Eller took it to the outside, cut to the net and scored. He is a great penalty killer and is blossoming into a very good two way player, but weâ€™re not here to talk about him. Heâ€™s also fast player, but Phaneuf simply has to do more to prevent that goal. Shots on goal were 24-15 in favor of the Habs at the end of the second. Yeah, Reimer was yanked. Surrendering 4 goals on 15 shots will do that to you regardless of who holds most of the blame.
9 â€“ Gus let in a goal on the first shot of the game. However, he just came in and it was a breakaway. Mathieu Darche got a pass from Plekanec and gave Gus no chance on the shot.
10 â€“ Youâ€™ve got to give credit to the Habs, they had a game plan and they executed it perfectly. On the other hand, itâ€™s hard not to execute against a team that had absolutely nothing going.
11 â€“ This game bothered me. It didnâ€™t bother that the team we had an off night, it didnâ€™t bother me that we lost to a better team on the night. What did bother me is that they had so much to play for, starting with that No. 13 freshly hanging from the rafters. Canâ€™t play like that in a game like this. It was unacceptable.
12 â€“ I love our Maple Leafs and would never dare to say they shamed me, but every player on that team needs to look at that crest in front, then look at themselves in the mirror and realize they let that crest down tonight. After that, they should watch a game featuring Mats Sundin.
No. 13 â€“ â€œThe Leafs have a young hungry team who are ready to compete. Support them, cheer them on and give them that extra energy to win on home ice.â€ Our captain, Mats Sundin. GO LEAFS GO!
Mats Sundin Banner Raising Video