Game Review: Game #73, Devils 3 vs. Leafs 2

Game Review: Game #73, Devils 3 vs. Leafs 2

1031

It may have been one of James Reimer’s final starts as a Leaf, depending on how soon Jonathan Bernier returns. It sure has been excruciating to watch this train wreck play out as the team in front of Reimer hasn’t played well enough to help him through his poorest stretch of games as a professional. 14 saves on 14 shots, a few of the challenging variety (the save on Gelinas in the slot was his best of the night), could mean Drew MacIntyre will get the start the next game (if Jonathan Bernier still can’t play).

This latest run of games for Reimer seems to have people running to one polar end of the spectrum or the other; to either lambaste him in a completely over-the-top fashion, or to spring to defend Reimer when it’s plain as day he’s had his chance to run with the net and he dropped the ball at the worst time of the season. It is what it is at this point. 3 goals on 10 shots including a definitive softie, a .870 save percentage over the Leafs‘ 5-game losing streak… it is what it is.

Patrick Elias shouldn’t be allowed to go in alone on Reimer with all the time in the world to walk around him (Rielly’s error). That goal cannot be classified as anything close to Reimer’s fault. And Dave Bolland definitely shouldn’t peel for a change with the imminent danger of a rush coming his way and only one defenceman back. But Reimer’s got to come up with a save on the 1st or 3rd goal. The Leafs allowing too many shots over the course of the season doesn’t change the reality for Reimer in these past three or four crucial games. It’s an unforgiving position, but it’s how being a goalie in the NHL works. You’ve got to come up with a few big saves in these important games to be heralded as a quality starter in this League. Reimer’s fully capable of it, he’s shown he’s capable of it, but he’s not showing it right now and you worry his time here has nearly run its course.

Complete frustration has been written all over Phil Kessel these past couple of losses. He chewed out JvR after getting looked off on a 2v1 in last night’s game versus Montreal, and a similar play happened in the 2nd period tonight, followed by some negative body language and Kessel yelling on the bench (it could be heard over the stream with the sound turned up), “he can do whatever he wants out there,” in reference to JvR.

Season-ruining five-game losing streaks will do this. One one hand, it’s understandable and preferable Kessel is absolutely livid with the latest turn of results; on the other, it’s usually not a constructive thing to be going at one another’s throats on the bench.

That goal on his late rush was going in whether it was off his stick or achieved by him bowling through the goalie and carrying it into the net. He’s seething right now, and all of us fans are right there with him.

As far as consolatory positives go, Rielly and Gardiner continue to be sources of light. It was good to see the pair matched with the top powerplay forward unit, leading to Tyler Bozak’s 3-1 goal. And yet…

The Leafs will need to collect 12 points out of the 18 still up for grabs, with two games against the Blues and Bruins in the final nine. It’s all but over.

Toronot Maple Leafs vs New Jersey Devils

EV fenwick chart for 2014-03-23 Maple Leafs 2 at Devils 3

Fenwick chart for 2014-03-23 Maple Leafs 2 at Devils 3

Toronto Maple Leafs vs New Jersey Devils Mar. 24, 2014

NEW JERSEY STATISTICS
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
GOALIEDEC.SHOTSSAVESSAVE %MIN.
Cory Schneider (14-14-9)W23210.91360:00:00
PLAYERGATOI+/-SOGPIMFWFLHITSBSTAKEGIVE
Damien Brunner1012:20230000001
Ryan Carter009:54010212010
Ryane Clowe0113:32110001001
Patrik Elias1017:38110170020
Mark Fayne0020:09002000000
Eric Gelinas008:13010002010
Stephen Gionta0016:45002553000
Andy Greene0021:03002000403
Peter Harrold0117:20220000010
Adam Henrique0119:39110471110
Jaromir Jagr0019:46060000010
Jon Merrill1116:31220001001
Tuomo Ruutu0011:48100002002
Michael Ryder008:06000002000
Bryce Salvador0022:03000001100
Travis Zajac0022:250301490021
Marek Zidlicky0117:34032002301
Dainius Zubrus0018:04000226010

TORONTO

GOALIEDEC.SHOTSSAVESSAVE %MIN.
Drew MacIntyre (0-0-0)1414136:04:00
James Reimer (11-13-1)L1070.721:50
PLAYERGATOI+/-SOGPIMFWFLHITSBSTAKEGIVE
Troy Bodie006:44000003000
Dave Bolland009:42000341000
Tyler Bozak1025:13:0002013121000
David Clarkson0010:00-210001000
Cody Franson0021:41130005001
Jake Gardiner0121:40020000000
Tim Gleason0012:47-310001110
Carl Gunnarsson0019:35000000200
Nazem Kadri0014:20-202941100
Phil Kessel1025:00:00140001001
Nikolai Kulemin0013:00-110100000
Joffrey Lupul0018:56-100002001
Jay McClement009:42000571100
Colton Orr002:17002002000
Dion Phaneuf0126:01:00140003011
Mason Raymond0016:58-100000000
Morgan Rielly0118:16-300000010
James van Riemsdyk0026:14:00150010011
Toronto Maple Leafs vs New Jersey Devils Mar. 24, 2014
Founded in 2008, Maple Leafs Hotstove (MLHS) has grown to be the most visited unofficial team-focused hockey website online (Quantcast). Independently owned and operated, MLHS provides thorough and wide ranging content, varying from news, opinion and analysis, to pre-game and long-form game reviews, a weekly feature piece, the "Leafs Notebook", along with a Web TV show the "Maple Leaf Hangout".
913 comments
TheBlueTruth
TheBlueTruth

In defense of Clarkson….. he didn't just get shitty all of a suddenly. I remembering going to Jersey last year to see the Leafs and Clarkson, Leo and Reimer were the best players on the ice with Clarkson the best of the three, by far. I spoke with him in Tampa back in Feb. and he said this has been the most difficult year of his career. Clearly he makes too much money and that truth hurts us regarding the cap but no one is working harder or cares more about this team then Clarkson. It would not be easy to go from a highly structured, defensively responsible team like the Devils… through in two suspensions and two injuries all that while trying too hard to justify everyone’s sticker shock as you attempt to fit in to a defensively broken system like we unfortunately have.

Clarkson will never be worth the money (but that’s not his fault) but he will be a valuable player when we are a playoff team.

dlb Mad
dlb Mad

what's the core that can't get it done in (how many years are you going back Fenton?)

2009?

Kessel (22), Bozak (23), Kadri (19), Kulemin (23), Orr (27), Phanuef (24), Gunnarsson (24)....Toskala (32)

2010?

add Lupul (27), Reimer (22) added ... the rest of the core should be done developing yet?

2011?

Phillipe Dupuis was our top penalty killer, Boyce made an impact.  Franson came aboard and was a coach's favourite.  Steckel was killer at face-offs.  Should have been able to count on Kessel and Bozak by now, right?  i only Guss had stayed healthy eh?

the current core players have been Maple Leafs property for a few years, and they've had a terrific supporting cast and were certainly in their prime the whole time.  idiot.

GiuseppeM
GiuseppeM

Posting this as we need some good ju-ju in this place. Tired of being down:


Do you watch English Premier League football?  I pay attention but I am not an avid watcher.

LEAF CONNECTION IS AS FOLLOWS:

I jumped on the Manchester City bandwagon in 2012 after they won. Why you ask?

They wear blue (LEAFS), have been successful in the past(LEAFS) but had not won in 44 years.(LEAFS)

And they are always overshadowed by a rival that is always successful and always praised and wear red Manchester United (MTL, DET)

Watch this video…….I beg you, it’s the best……..this is the feeling I want! 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81bv_gF4j5k

We all are that old man in the end.

 

peterbleafs
peterbleafs

this offseason RC is gone, new coach will have structure, next year Clarkson will shine

CanuckUKinToronto
CanuckUKinToronto

Another example why I think Nonis will replace Carlyle-  he doesnt choose roster selection with players mgmt want in the lineup/ time on ice.  Like Holland/Ashton vs FML and Orr.  etc.


Look at a club that didnt accept mediocrity.  St Louis

The year they fired their coach and brought in Hitchcock:

They were 6W 7L and 12 pts in 13 games. For the remainder of the season they finished 43 15 11 and 97 pts (finished with 109 pts) 

so prior season before that 13 games they had 87 pts in 82 games


With Hitchcock since... 

260 pts in 188 games.

lukethenuke
lukethenuke

So who are we gonna draft 14th overall?

wendelsway1
wendelsway1

Too depressing on here today......Have a great day, All.......Later  :)

maple1967leafs
maple1967leafs

I just got back from a meeting with Chicken Little,,,WE"RE FUCKED   :)

Hammertownleaffan
Hammertownleaffan

Clarkson seems to enjoy playing the majority of the game with one hand on his stick. I assume it's because he likes to make it easier on himself to look down and count on his fingers just how many millions of dollars he is stealing from this franchise this year. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5....they're all there David.

Yaknowwhat
Yaknowwhat

There is bad goaltending...average goaltending....and above average goaltending....lets face it...Reimer did not even provide average goaltending over the last few games....its funny because everyone has very different expectations when it comes to goaltending....you see a goalie get beat on a break away and you'll hear people say...well it was a break away...you can't blame the goalie? yes...and no....its not really unrealistic to expect your goalie to make a save on a break away from time to time....look at shootout numbers...most favour the goalie....same goes for making big saves....its not unrealistic to expect your goalie to make one or two big saves a period....obviously they can't stop everything...but its strange how some try to justify and accept average or just plain bad goaltending....your making millions and playing in the NHL for a reason....your expected to be able to deliver the goods more often than not...

Burtonboy
Burtonboy

Just realized its been 5 games in one week . That's nuts 

Greg Fenton
Greg Fenton

@dlb eh  And they've shown little to no progression as a group. 


Wow, someone is getting super defensive because of the losing streak.......

Cloud09
Cloud09

@GiuseppeM  I watched this live and knew the Man City story. Really felt happy for the fans, something I aspire to experience at some point. 

Bennett2Gareth
Bennett2Gareth

@TheCanucksnaphook  I think he'll come around.  I just think he needs to be put somewhere he can succeed.  Third line is good for him.  Play reliable hockey and basic plays, keep the energy up. etc, etc

ProfessorRance
ProfessorRance

@BBirde  Gotta put him back with Bozak and Lupul. We need to get Lupul going again. JVR could create space for Kadri as well.

MaxwellHowe
MaxwellHowe

@lukethenuke Some guy with a 4th line ceiling who would therefore see 3 minutes of ice time a game under Carlyle.  Wouldn't mind them swinging for the bleachers on a pick this year.

Hammertownleaffan
Hammertownleaffan

@BBirde My favourite goal of the year. Lupul tying it against the Oilers with 5 seconds left is a close second. Those were fun times.

ConnorCrisp
ConnorCrisp

He needs both his hands to count the term of that contract though... Maybe that's why he falls all the time

CanuckUKinToronto
CanuckUKinToronto

@Yaknowwhat How many break aways/ 2 on 1s happend in every game in the NHL?  a few.. Leafs get at least 5 a game. NHL goalies stop 91-93% of all shots against.  So logically, only about 1 in 5 breakaways or 2 on 1s statistically get scored on as the remainder of goals are PP or possession goals/errors
...yes they should be primarily stopped and not an excuse

wendelsway1
wendelsway1

@Burtonboy  I'd really like to know how the hell we played more games than just about every team going into the break, yet the back to backs keep coming......absolutely nutty scheduling

dlb Mad
dlb Mad

@Burtonboy

yeah, 8 cities in 13 days or something across time zones.  with the flu.

there were a lot of things i didn't really think about (as excuses, yes) that they mentioned briefly during the game.

DJGLENN22
DJGLENN22

@LeafsManiac @TheBlueTruth Oilers offered up more money he came here because he was a die hard Leaf fan growing up and like his dad wished his son to become a Leaf

Marleafs
Marleafs

@ProfessorRance @peterbleafs He doesnt go to the net anymore. Clarkson is a bonified sniper now. Havent you seen?

Seriously though, if the player doesnt go to the net 5 on 5, what makes you think he deserves PP time?

TheCanucksnaphook
TheCanucksnaphook

@LeafsManiac Cant take the contract back.  I wont be dwelling on it at this point.  Adapt to it, and make the team better moving forward.  This kinda reminds me of the Kessel treatement when we first traded for him.  very cyclical here in TO.

animalres
animalres

Dont care they get paid handsomly for that. Those excuses arent good enough. I get it sucka and its tiring but they have to suck it up. Lets not forget its a fuckin sport they love to play. They only have 82 games. They play ov average 18min a game(obv some more) and they have lackies who take care of carrying and seting up most of their shit they travel with. I just dont feel bad when i hear these excuses. Oh its the end of the season and yout tired? Well so is everyone else. Suck it up.

Hammertownleaffan
Hammertownleaffan

@BBirde @Hammertownleaffan@peterbleafsHaha don't be testy. I'm a sarcastic prick, I know it. Just tough to watch people defend the guy. I hope he proves me wrong (hell, at this point, I don't have a choice). It's just tough to watch him contribute sweet f*** all every single game. 2 points in 26 games is insane. You or I could do that. I hope he figures it out and/or we put something in place to help him out.

Greg Fenton
Greg Fenton

@TheCanucksnaphook @LeafsManiac  I like Clarkson, I liked the signing, I liked letting MacArthur go and buying out Grabovski.


However it is also totally fair and valid for to criticise Clarkson and/or Nonis for that contract given his play this year. If there was no salary cap that'd be one, but the Leafs have limited money to spend on players and someone taking 5.25 million of that space each year and not playing to the level of that contract is an issue. 

dlb Mad
dlb Mad

@LeafsManiac

incredibly, though, the top GM in NJ wanted to resign him for all that money but Clarkson had his heart set on Toronto.  the fans loved him in NJ.

there's got to be something in between what they liked about him and what we're seeing from him.