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NHL 2022-23 Playoffs RD 1: Toronto (A2) vs. Tampa Bay (A3) - (Toronto wins series 4-2)


pilldoc

NHL 2022-23 Playoffs RD 1: Toronto (A2) vs. Tampa Bay (A3)  

12 members have voted

  1. 1. Who wins the series?

    • Leafs sweep in 4
      0
    • Leafs in 5
      1
    • Leafs in 6*
      5
    • Leafs in 7
      2
    • Bolts sweep in 4
      0
    • Bolts in 5
      0
    • Bolts in 6
      1
    • Bolts in 7
      3

This poll is closed to new votes


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Schedule TBD

 

All discussion here.

 

(2) Toronto Maple Leafs vs. (3) Tampa Bay Lightning

Game 1: | Tuesday, April 18, 7:30 p.m. | at TOR | TV: SNE
Game 2: | Thursday, April 20, 7 p.m. | at TOR | TV: SN
Game 3: | Saturday, April 22, 7 p.m. | at TBL | TV: TBS
Game 4: | Monday, April 24, 7:30 p.m. | at TBL | TV: TBS
Game 5*: | Thursday, April 27, TBD | at TOR | TV: TBD
Game 6*: | Saturday, April 29, TBD | at TBL | TV: TBD
Game 7*: | Monday, May 1, TBD | at TOR | TV: TBD

Edited by pilldoc
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This is maybe the toughest battle along with Devils and Rangers in round one.  Mayne Seattle too?  I just do not think Tampa are as good as they were even last year.  The Sabres beat them last two, and Toronto was very tough opponent.  I really fear Toronto as they have Matthews and Tavares and Marner.  They  can score

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Goalies: :lightning:

Defense: :lightning:

Offense: :mapleleafs:

Special teams (PP/PK): :mapleleafs:

Coaching: :lightning:

Mental: :lightning:

Experience: :lightning:

Robustness: :mapleleafs:

Depth: :mapleleafs:

 

The Leafs are better than last year while the Lightning has declined a bit. There's still the Vasilevsky factor but I think this one the Leafs will go past Tampa by a quarter-hair. And by surely-to-be-wrong prediction. If the Leafs go past the Lightning, no more weight on the shoulders, the Kraken will be released and they will be unstoppable.

 

Leafs in 7.

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Hmmm....the match up that EVERYONE and their bookie knew was coming even well before the season was over due to the playoff format as it currently is.
I can't really be expected to be objective here, eh? Ok...ok...I will try:

Based on what I have seen this entire past season, the Leaves® should win....they can score with more regularity, they have the team toughness (and some great pickups at the deadline) to bolster their chances against ANYONE, they have much more seasoning on the big stage now with many of their players, and they even defend and tend goal pretty decently too.

The two time former champs? Not really close to the dominant team they have been the last three years.
In fact, I think it would be fair to say they are in a sort of transitional stage, as they have been steadily losing key cogs throughout the years, and I think the proverbial 'straw that broke the camel's back' could have been losing McDonagh (traded), Jan Rutta (allowed to leave), and Ondrej Palat (allowed to leave).
Sure, I understand why the Bolts did these things....and they had to be done......but it doesn't change the fact that players who made them the champions they are, no longer skate for them, and those last three were a culmination of that.

And the players brought in to replace them, while good, have yet to prove they have championship chops.
So the Bolts, unlike the Leaves®, looked very hit n miss throughout the year, relying way too much on Andrei Vasilevskiy, or some star forward rattling off a bunch of points, to bail them out, rather than play the consistent, game to game, championship style TB fans are accustomed to.

This all points to Toronto being favorites here, and possibly having their best chance to get by the first round in years! At the expense of my beloved Bolts.
And if that happens, I will be very bummed indeed...... plus, my patent on "Leaves®" will expire, because, for those that don't know, I said should Toronto FINALLY ever make it past the first round, I would be forced to call them by their proper names once again.

So, based on all I have just typed....both the hockey observations and the personal feelings on all this, I am NOT gonna vote logically here and say Bolts break the hearts of Leaves® fans (and give me an extension on my patent for at least another season :bigteeth:  ).....and they end up taking the series in 7! Just like last year.
Because....&^%$ the Leaves® :shifty: 

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The issue I have with the Leafs is that they start at home... Huge pressure right in the beginning in front of your fans, not sure I'd like it. If they drop one home game, the pressure will be quickly insufferable. Starting the season on the road would have been much better for them IMO.

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On 4/17/2023 at 3:14 PM, Math said:

Huge pressure right in the beginning in front of your fans, not sure I'd like it. If they drop one home game, the pressure will be quickly insufferable. Starting the season on the road would have been much better for them IMO.


I’m sure that Leafs management briefly considered a Prayer instead of O Canada! to open the evening.

 

Woulda-coulda-shoulda…..1-zip Bolts after barely a minute.

Edited by SaucyJack
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10 minutes ago, SaucyJack said:


I’m sure that Leafs management briefly considered a Prayer instead of O Canada! to open the evening.

 

Woulda-coulda-shoulda…..1-zip Bolts after barely a minute.

 

Make it 2-0 Bolts.
And its not even the "big guns" of TB.

Maybe Toronto isn't giving the rest of lineup the Lightning have their proper due, but goals from Bellemare and Cirelli show that the lunch pail guys can and will score if you take them lightly.
Both goals score on plays where they simply outworked the Leaves® down low!

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Lightning going to the PP now.
Again, a result of outworking the Leaves® down low.

Trying to figure out who that color commentator guy is on ESPN. 
Sounds like a voice I've heard before on Toronto broadcasts.

Anyways, he called Brayden Point an "underrated player".
Who the %$#@ still UNDERRATES Brayden Point!??

He better go have another bite of his Toronto blue sandwich and have some more sips of the blue tea Leaves®....

Edited by TropicalFruitGirl26
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Bolts may have a rat bastard in Corey Perry, but the Leaves® have Michael "Field Mouse" Bunting doing the same for his team.
And the Bolts are well aware of his shenanigans.....some of the Lightning players are actually daring Bunting to do something as they are taking some extra shots at him between plays.

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2 minutes ago, SaucyJack said:

Sounds like Ray Ferraro

 

yea, well, not sure where he's been, but Point stopped being an 'underrated' player a long time ago.
Teams actually GAME PLAN against Point, like they do against Stamkos and Kucherov.

Anyways, Leaves® with some of their best chances to solve Vasilevskiy just a bit ago.
Lots of pressure, looks like they finally got their hard hats on and got to work.

Michael Bunting still trying to start crap every time he is near Vasilevskiy, but there is always a Bolts defender there to be sure he doesn't bother The Big Cat.
But meanwhile, some TB players, like Nick Paul and even Steven Stamkos, trying to pester the Toronto netminder whenever possible as well.

Classic chess game going on here between the coaches and players.

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Haha...that a-hole Bunting finally comes through for his team.

He drew that penalty against Cernak by actually SKATING towards him as Cernak was turning around.....then when Cernak makes contact, he flops like a flounder just pulled out of the water.

PP Leaves®

Gotta hand it to Bunting there, good stuff.... %$#@er... :bigteeth: 

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