Boneheaded plays continue to thwart Toronto mission
Sometimes it seems like it's one step forward, one step back for the Maple Leafs this season. While the Leafs look more lively on the ice so far, they are still falling victim to some poor mental mistakes which end up costing them games.
The latest issue was one which left captain Dion Phaneuf red-faced. The defenseman let his anger get the best of him in Saturday night's game when he took a retaliatory cross-checking penalty against Montreal's Dale Weise, a move which put the Canadiens on the power-play.
Montreal took advantage of the opportunity with a power-play goal from Brendan Gallagher to extend Montreal's lead at the time to 5-2. Phaneuf's penalty was not only needless in general, it was especially embarrassing considering it came from the team's captain.
“You can’t take it,” Toronto coach Mike Babcock told the media of the penalty. He refused to tell the media what he said to Phaneuf about it, but it was obvious the coach was unhappy.
Those unnecessary penalties are especially frustrating in a game in which the Leafs seemed to have momentum on their side, as they out-shot Montreal 52-27. But penalties like Phaneuf's continue to show the reason why Toronto still has just one win this season.
(h/t Montreal Gazette)