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Playoffs 2021 Opening Round: Montreal Canadiens vs Toronto Maple Leafs (MTL Wins 4-3)


Choose Yer Poison  

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  1. 1. Choose Yer Poison

    • Habs Shock n Pound Leafs in 4
      0
    • Habs Win in Surprising Fashion in 5
    • Habs Take Competitive Series in 6
    • Habs Contain the Leafs Enough to Win in 7
    • Leafs Laugh Their Way to the Next Round in 4
      0
    • Leafs Dominate an Overmatched Habs Team in 5
      0
    • Leafs Face Some Adversity, But Get it Done in 6
    • Leafs Show They are Ready To Go the Distance in 7


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12 minutes ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

It was actually 60.   😐

 

 

 

But not the same atmosphere without fans in attendance and without all the sports bars and patios open.  Normally I'd walk downtown and see a sea of blue and white jerseys, sports bars packed, and cars with Leafs flags out the window. Couldn't have ANY of that this time around. 

How come without fans in attendance when in US arenas we could see up to 10,000.00 - 12,000.00 fans? What is the difference?

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Official statement of the League:    

You'd make a terrible Flyer fan.

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1 hour ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

First time the Leafs have gone into a playoff series as the favourite to win.

 

The ultimate slap in the face!!!!!

 

 

Them are fighting words!!!!!!!

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51 minutes ago, OccamsRazor said:

Someone feels your pain....enjoy.

 

 

This guy is a riot …. 😂 

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8 hours ago, Alexandron said:

How come without fans in attendance when in US arenas we could see up to 10,000.00 - 12,000.00 fans? What is the difference?

 

Covid? Canada's had 25,000 covid deaths, the U.S. has the most, by far, on the planet. In Ontario our junior league didn't even play, period.

 

Hopefully things get back to normal for next season.

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20 hours ago, mojo1917 said:

Do you fire coaches? trade players? they've got 33m aav in 3 players does that leave enough for building a good team? does someone get dealt?

Or make the players learn from their mistakes, learn how to play playoff hockey, learn how to defend and find a true goalie. 

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12 hours ago, Alexandron said:

How come without fans in attendance when in US arenas we could see up to 10,000.00 - 12,000.00 fans? What is the difference?

 

They didn't allow fans into the arenas in Canada, so the game feels "dead" when you watch it. It's like watching a practice. There's no "game atmosphere". 

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On 5/31/2021 at 10:00 PM, Smokeader said:

Time for the Leaf ownership to clean house.  If the players cannot finish a series being up 3-1, it is time for changes. Since the players are pretty much safe, that means management has to take the hit.  If you cannot motivate your players to beat your longest standing historical rival for just one more game to close out the series, then management needs to become folks who can do that.

 

I'd be in favour of replacing Dubas. He hasn't made any significant positive moves on this team besides the no-brainer moves of drafting the #1 overall pick when the opportunity arose. 

 

The Leafs have CLEAR weaknesses, even as the 1st place team in the North division. We need a GM who will stop denying they exist and fix them. 

 

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13 hours ago, OccamsRazor said:

That and like by beloved Flyers your stars failed to perform when the stage was at it's biggest.

 

Quote

In the Leafs case well you can flip your assets for pieces you need.

 

In fact the Leafs best bet would be to go hard after Seth Jones who many Flyer fans covet....but if you were to serve up a Marner for Jones trade well it would be hard to trump that.

 

Marner will have seen his stock drop somewhat after this recent playoff performance. It would be a bad time to trade him.

 

This playoffs got off to a rotten start with the injury to Tavares. When you lose your captain 5 minutes into game 1 with a playoff-ending injury, that's a BAD OMEN.  You just know your team is on borrowed time at that point. Even if the Leafs had won, Tavares wasn't coming back for the Jets series. The Leafs would have eventually been worn down and exposed without secondary scoring.

 

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12 hours ago, OccamsRazor said:

Maybe we can revisit the Willy Nylander for Phil Myers trade suggestions....

 

LOL.  :)

 

It was Kapanen for Myers lol.  For Nylander, the price was Provorov I believe, or Myers + JVR.  (I forget now.) 

 

 

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36 minutes ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

 

Marner will have seen his stock drop somewhat after this recent playoff performance. It would be a bad time to trade him.

 

This playoffs got off to a rotten start with the injury to Tavares. When you lose your captain 5 minutes into game 1 with a playoff-ending injury, that's a BAD OMEN.  You just know your team is on borrowed time at that point. Even if the Leafs had won, Tavares wasn't coming back for the Jets series. The Leafs would have eventually been worn down and exposed without secondary scoring.

 

 

You know, this is a great excuse that we all delude ourselves with.   You're not alone on this, and I'm certainly not above it.

But this simply doesn't fly and neither does the Muzzin excuse.   Here's why:

Without both players, they built up a 3 to 1 lead.   Again, they built up that lead without them.   Somewhere after game four, the coaching staff panicked and shuffled lines, etc., and I think it messed with the team's heads.   Probably not a good idea with a team that already has recent playoff history in their heads.    Once they lost game 5, that history had to start playing with their minds.   And then it rolled from there.   You could kind of see it in them even between games 6 and 7 that unless the Canadiens imploded in game 7 that the Leafs really stood little chance.  

 

I don't think the Leafs need to do anything stupid like move Marner or Matthews or any of their top guys.   Really.   I see a lot of kvetching about Campbell, but the truth is he was very good down the stretch.   Yeah, maybe improve goaltending, but I don't think that's the issue.  What they need is a top 9 forward or top 4 defenseman (arguably both) who has won the whole damn thing and has done it recently.  Someone who can, "we know a thing or two because we've seen a thing or two.    Because this series is only going to exacerbate the issue that caused this failure.   Next year, the haunting memory of this season will just be another big fat log on that fire.

 

Marner, Matthews, others, just need those voices playing beside them to help them get out of their own way in the playoffs and just play as we all know they're capable.   It's 100% mental at this point and those are the small tweaks that would help.

 

Simmonds, for example, wasn't a help not [just] because he's old and no longer as effective.   It's because he's won nowhere he's been.   He cannot be that voice because he has his own history of playing for teams that folded in the face of adversity.   

 

I don't want to over-exaggerate this concept, but it really is a thing.   I think tearing apart this nucleus would be not only unnecessary; it would be a mistake.    They just need to add to it intelligently, and that will take soberly identifying the problem.   That problem isn't solved by old castoffs who used to have some grit.   They need their own Corey Perry add, even if at the deadline.   

 

Fogliano?  Are you kidding me?

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1 hour ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

 

They didn't allow fans into the arenas in Canada, so the game feels "dead" when you watch it. It's like watching a practice. There's no "game atmosphere". 

 

Funny this wasn't a big deal while the Leafs were romping through the regular season. :biggrin:

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2 hours ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

For Nylander, the price was Provorov I believe, or Myers + JVR. 

 

I would do Myers and JVR for Nylander....both teams need a shake up....i'll pack their bags. 

 

Meet you halfway.......

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55 minutes ago, flyercanuck said:

 

Funny this wasn't a big deal while the Leafs were romping through the regular season. :biggrin:

 

Like that age old saying goes, :"All good romps must come to an end" 🙃

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20 hours ago, OccamsRazor said:

 

I would do Myers and JVR for Nylander....both teams need a shake up....i'll pack their bags. 

 

Meet you halfway.......

 

I think it's inevitable that Toronto is going to move out two of the following players:

  • Matthews
  • Marner
  • Tavares
  • Nylander

When cap issues like this occur, the players that get moved are the second line guys, not the #1 or #2 guys. I think Matthews and Marner are safe. One of those two will be the captain next season. Toronto will lose Tavares and Nylander in an effort to improve defensively and get tougher. 

 

Matthews and Marner will get split up. Marner will be converted to a center. That'll be your 1A and 1B lines in Toronto: built just like the Penguins. Two elite centers and then just "Phil" garbage in around them. 

 

 

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23 hours ago, ruxpin said:

You know, this is a great excuse that we all delude ourselves with.   You're not alone on this, and I'm certainly not above it.

But this simply doesn't fly and neither does the Muzzin excuse.   Here's why:

Without both players, they built up a 3 to 1 lead.   Again, they built up that lead without them.

 

That's why I used the term "on borrowed time".  It's like the Titanic immediately after it hit the iceberg. Yes, it's still above the water. Yes, it still looks undamaged to the people on board. Yes, it can probably drift a little further along in the water. But it's still sinking. 

 

Losing your #2 center (or #1-B center) means that the opposition can focus exclusively on Matthews and wear him down. The situation would have been even worse against the Jets, who have tremendous depth. 

 

Given the parity that exists in the NHL today, the loss of ONE key player is enough to turn a series. Maybe in those games where Matthews didn't score, Tavares would have had a big night. The focus would have been off Matthews and Marner because someone else would have been contributing. Nylander did his part. If Tavares was there, I'm sure he would have been a big factor as well, and that would have been enough to defeat Habs. Just having Nylander and Tavares going would have carried the Leafs into round 2. Then maybe Nylander and Tavares cool off and Matthews and Marner get going against the Jets. That's what you need to win in the playoffs. You need so many stars that they can't all go silent at the same time.

 

23 hours ago, ruxpin said:

Simmonds, for example, wasn't a help not [just] because he's old and no longer as effective.   It's because he's won nowhere he's been.   He cannot be that voice because he has his own history of playing for teams that folded in the face of adversity. 

 

And that's the other issue. Instead of grabbing veteran leaders who have never won, the Leafs need veteran guys who have. Well said.

 

 

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, WordsOfWisdom said:

That's why I used the term "on borrowed time".  It's like the Titanic immediately after it hit the iceberg. Yes, it's still above the water. Yes, it still looks undamaged to the people on board. Yes, it can probably drift a little further along in the water. But it's still sinking. 

 

Losing your #2 center (or #1-B center) means that the opposition can focus exclusively on Matthews and wear him down. The situation would have been even worse against the Jets, who have tremendous depth. 

 

Yeah, that's valid.  Certainly.

 

I do think it was compounded by the "oh no, here we go again" fear gripping this team in the absence of having someone in the room to calm them because they've already done it.   

 

I think without Tavares, and without Muzzin for any continued period of time would have been ultimately dooming.  But up 3-1, that wasn't (IMO) the deciding factor.  But yes, it was certainly a strong ingredient.

 

I think some of my response is because of all the attack on Marner, in particular, that I've seen elsewhere and calls on SM to blow it up or trade important pieces, or burning jerseys, etc.   I mean, I realize some of this is exacerbated by being locked in houses and COVID-weariness and "dammit, this is my distraction!" but it's really hysterics and, I don't think, a sensible response.

 

I imagine as time passes, cooler heads prevail and the response is sensible and calculated and not knee-jerk destruction of a team building for good things.

 


The worst part about this whole thing is that I might accidentally become a Leafs' fan just out of spite!

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Posted (edited)
20 minutes ago, ruxpin said:

Yeah, that's valid.  Certainly.

 

I do think it was compounded by the "oh no, here we go again" fear gripping this team in the absence of having someone in the room to calm them because they've already done it. 

 

I don't know how the team can change its losing culture other than to acquire proven winners as you mentioned.

 

Wouldn't hurt to get some GOOD luck for a change too. The Tavares injury reminded me of the Doug Gilmour injury back in 2002 or whenever it was. 

 

Gilmour made his return to the Leafs sometime around 2002 as a veteran/leader/depth guy to help put the team over the top. It was like a "good karma, feel-good acquisition" type of thing around the trade deadline. The move that would put the Leafs over the top. Well sure enough, Gilmour gets injured (blowing out his knee I think) in his FIRST game back and that was the end of his career. He played his final NHL game in a Leafs uniform and it wasn't even a full game.  Look at Gilmour's stats on Hockey Reference.com.

 

 

20 minutes ago, ruxpin said:

I imagine as time passes, cooler heads prevail and the response is sensible and calculated and not knee-jerk destruction of a team building for good things.

 

Agreed. But I think management will acknowledge that they can't win with so much cap space invested in forwards. They're going to have to spend more on defencemen and possibly upgrade in goal to replace Andersen. 

 

20 minutes ago, ruxpin said:

The worst part about this whole thing is that I might accidentally become a Leafs' fan just out of spite!

 

😃👍

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The Leafs are fine. I wouldn't change a thing. There's talent, good vets and experienced guys that actually already won in playoffs, great depth. Maybe goaltending is a bit questionable but that's it.

 

Honestly, at that point, I would destroy their current arena and play somewhere else. This place is certainly held by some obscure, supernatural, devil and dark forces. I'd try some voodoo rituals, hire some shaman first, but then blow it, leave that geographical place and kill these spirits for good.

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I wouldn't do much either. Maybe change the coaching. Bring in some strong defensemen. Cap issues might force some changes, but otherwise I think Matthews and Marner may well have learned a good lesson here, and they might be a lot harder to keep from succeeding in the next series.

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The Tavares injury 5 minutes into game 1 of the playoffs was like a WORSE VERSION of this:

 

The infamous (ie: footage burned and buried by MLSE) Doug Gilmour injury during his 1st game back as a Leaf:

(The addition of Gilmour was seen as a depth move to put the Leafs over the top for a long playoff run that season.)

 

 

 

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On 6/3/2021 at 11:33 AM, lynxrattle said:

I wouldn't do much either. Maybe change the coaching. Bring in some strong defensemen. Cap issues might force some changes, but otherwise I think Matthews and Marner may well have learned a good lesson here, and they might be a lot harder to keep from succeeding in the next series.

I said that about the sharks alot

 

Edit: holy crap. Thornton at age 41/42 had more goals in this year's playoffs than Marner

 

 

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5 hours ago, J0e Th0rnton said:

I said that about the sharks alot

 

Edit: holy crap. Thornton at age 41/42 had more goals in this year's playoffs than Marner

 

 

That's a scary thought for the Leafs. Imagine having those players and never get anywhere but close.

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