A Leaf team that’s proven to have a weak psyche the past few seasons, now mired in one of the worst slumps in recent franchise history, had about the worst thing that could’ve happened happen with the Jonathan Bernier brainfart to start the third, followed by another weak goal against shortly after.

One of the worst teams in the League at chasing the lead not surprisingly faded into the night.

For the best in the long run, but it’s sure tough to watch in the meantime. The offense has been feast or famine the past two seasons, but the Leafs can’t even get timely goaltending anymore.

One nice theme/takeaway from the past few games, from Evan’s scoring chance postMorgan Rielly stepped up his offensive game while the Leafs were behind in the third, as he and Jake Gardiner were the best on the back end at driving chances in that time frame.

Friday Links:

  • James Mirtle: Dion Phaneuf’s injury is a blessing for retooling Leafs (The Globe and Mail)
    Phaneuf has barely missed any time to injury since he joined the Leafs, a credit to his durability, but also a shame in that we haven’t had a prolonged look at how they could benefit from not relying on a flawed “big piece” so heavily.
  • Jonas Siegel: Leafs can’t stop the 18 wheeler, drop eighth straight (
    “It’s just like these situations where we’re finding ways not to win,” said Peter Horachek after his team’s 16th loss in 19 games, a 3-1 defeat to the equally reeling Coyotes.
  • James Mirtle: Maple Leafs confidence sagging to all-time low (The Globe and Mail)
    If you think “worst months in NHL history” is hyperbole, consider this: They have one win and only three points in the 12 games, a 1-10-1 stretch in which they’ve been outscored 40-16.
  • Chris Johnston: Free falling Maple leafs can’t catch a break (
    The entire sequence lasted just five seconds. It was the quickest short-handed goal to start a period in the entire 98-year history of the NHL, according to Elias Sports Bureau, and it ended up sinking the Maple Leafs on Thursday night.
  • Trade Talk: Leafs aren’t ready to part with Daniel Winnik just yet(
    According to TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger, the Leafs received an offer from the Pittsburgh Penguins – one of the busier clubs ahead of the deadline – for utility forward Daniel Winnik last week.
  • Bob McKenzie: Top 60 Midseason Draft Rankings (
    It’s not at all surprising McDavid tops TSN’s mid-season ranking – he was No. 1 on TSN’s pre-season list in September, too – but three of the same 10 scouts surveyed in the fall had Boston University centre Jack Eichel at No. 1. In the intervening five months, all three have switched over to McDavid.
  • MLHS: Game in 12 — Coyotes 3 vs. Leafs 1 (Video Highlights)
    In case you “missed” it.