The Maple Leafs are looking for a bounce-back game after hitting the lowest point of their season so far, a blowout loss to league laughingstock the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday night.
The Predators are one of the early surprises of the 2014-15 season, sitting third in the West with a 11-4-2 record under new head coach Peter Laviolette. It's been a pattern of sorts for Laviolette-coached teams -- in first full seasons in Carolina and Philadelphia, his teams went to the Cup Finals after missing the playoffs the season previous. Without really knowing it to be true, one could forge a narrative...
Dreger: Interest in O'Reilly from Oilers, Jets, Leafs
Mirtle: Unsustainable Flames can't keep burning teams forever
Petrielli: Leafs Notebook, Nov. 17th
Johnson: An advanced stats look at the Leaf players through 18 games
Arthur: Phil Kessel cold shoulder low on list of Maple Leafs’ problems
Langlois: Will the real Maple Leafs please stand up?
Vollman: Why Kessel-type deals are worth it
The week coming up has Nashville Predators Tuesday, Tampa Bay Lightning Thursday and Detroit Red Wings Saturday. Here be your links.
Jonas Siegel on Phil Kessel (TSN)
Siegel pulls a temper tantrum and insinuates he's going to "out" Kessel after the notoriously quiet player doesn't want to talk to media after a humiliating loss.
Dreger on Lupul's injuries, trade potential (Nichols on Hockey)
On Joffrey Lupul’s injury history and if that might impact the Leafs’ decision on what to do with him
Leafs Notebook - November 17 (MLHS)
Petrielli on Pat Burns, a nice tribute to Bryan Murray and insight into the week that was
Phil Kessel speaks with the media after Monday's practice. Talks about to his reasoning for not talking to the media after the game vs Buffalo. In the background, Dion Phaneuf says a special hello to Jonas Siegel.
There’s no such thing as a good team that is inconsistent. The definition of a good team is one that is consistent.
By extension, mediocre teams are inconsistent, and the Leafs are mediocre. Most people get that.
But then there’s this: In a week where this team dominated the Bruins, scoring 6 goals and allowing 25 shots, they let in six to a truly awful team that’s been scoring 1.2 goals a game.
If anyone can explain this, throw it in the comments.
Shot Location Chart
The last time these teams met, it was as one-sided an NHL game as I've seen. It looked like there might be a similar result this time out; through 15 minutes the Leafs were dominant in chances, and it just seemed like a matter of time before they would break the Sabres down.
However, after the penalty to David Clarkson, Buffalo scored two goals before the end of the period. While Toronto again had the better of the play in the second, even a late pair of goals couldn't help them get closer than two. Two goals for the Sabres...
Toronto (9-6-2) is in Buffalo to take on the struggling Sabres (3-13-2) in what always feels like a home game for the visiting Maple Leafs.
After a tough loss against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Toronto Maple Leafs look to continue piling up points against the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres' struggles are well documented; they're near last in every statistical category in the league right now, and out in front for the Connor McDavid sweepstakes, so far.
Korbinian Holzer has been called up on an emergency basis. It's a assumed that one of the right-hand shot defence are injured. One of Robidas or...
The Leafs had twelve minutes of powerplay time, but weren't able to get a goal out of any of it against the Penguins. Pittsburgh dominated the Leafs at even strength all night, but Bernier stood strong, and Toronto was in it right until the end. So it ended up as one of those odd sorts of games where the Leafs probably deserved to lose by more, but also will be ruing their missed chances. In particular, Toronto was outchanced 5-1 at ES after Franson's goal, showing how poor their chase was when they didn't have the extra man.
The Pittsburgh Penguins (10-3-1) are in town to take on the Toronto Maple Leafs (9-5-2) after taking a 5-0 beat down at the hands of the New York Rangers on Tuesday.
When these two teams face each other, the potential for it to turn into a track meet is always there (see table below for more details). Both teams can score goals with the best of them; Pittsburgh is technically 1st in the league right now with a .750 win percentage and Toronto climbing quickly at 10th in the league with a .625, despite the standings (not accounting for games played) having them...
Pittsburgh tonight followed by Buffalo tomorrow. Better to be playing the Sabres when tired than the Penguins, at least.
Paul Hendrick: Peter Horachek interview -- talks backside pressure, neutral zone coverage (Leafs TV)
Jonas Siegel: Cody Franson's stock is rising for the Leafs at just the right time (TSN)
Siegel & Mirtle: Jonas Siegel and James Mirtle on the Leaf Report Podcast (TSN)
Mark Masters: "He's a god-given talent," a closer look at Phil Kessel's magic stick (TSN)
Mark Zwolinski: Maple Leafs, Penguins matchup puts new playing styles to the test (Toronto Star)
Michael Traikos: Maple Leafs find public humiliation can be good for you...
There will be some debate after this win as to whether the Leafs were just that good or the Bruins were just that “off.”
Zdeno Chara and David Krejci were out of the lineup and that’s a big factor, beyond a shadow of a doubt.
On the flipside, Chara wasn’t in the lineup in the late October 4-1 Bruin win in Toronto. The Bruins weren’t playing anywhere near as good then as they have been recently, either; they were plugging along at .500 when they entered that game. The Bruins were 8-2-0 in their last 10 and riding a five-game winning...
After losing out in their last game against Boston, Toronto came out strong last night, dominating the first ten minutes and getting a goal for their work.
The game was even in chances after the first period, as Boston did well in the second half of the frame, although the Bruins still trailed. However, the Leafs broke it open in the first half of the second period, dominating play and scoring four goals in the ten minute stretch. They ended up taking the period 9-4 in ES chances. While Boston pulled the chance gap back in the third, it didn't...