Toronto Maple Leafs: Five Thoughts On Leafs/Blues
The Toronto Maple Leafs and St. Louis Blues hit the ice tonight fresh off the firing of Ken Hitchcock.
The Toronto Maple Leafs have a chance to take advantage of a Blues team who just fired their coach for terrible goaltending. Here are five thoughts for the game.
1) Jake Allen and Carter Hutton are the worst 5v5 goalie duo in the entire league. That’s why Hitchcock got fired – and that’s what the Leafs need to exploit tonight to get a win.
Fortunately, the Leafs are good at scoring goals in bunches so they have a good chance to pile them up again tonight.
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2) The possession game will be tight. The Blues, while outside of the playoff picture currently, are not a bad team outside of their crease. Expect both teams to trade chances fairly evenly, so it’s going to come down to which team has the better keeper tonight.
3) The Leafs goalies got destroyed against Dallas. Considering how well they’ve both played this season, it’s not much of a concern for a repeat.
4) A must-win in February. The Leafs can’t lose three in a row right now. It’s bad for confidence as the playoff push continues.
The Blues are a team the Leafs should beat and they can’t let another one slip by like they did with Dallas. The wins you should get are the ones you need to capitalize on if you want to be a playoff team.
5) Line mashing is a terrible idea. Mike Babcock went full-blender on the lines against Dallas. That’s a waste of time. Contrary to what Nazem Kadri thinks, not everyone on the Leafs can play with everyone else in the lineup.
Toronto has had success this year by having consistency in their lines and a nice balance throughout. Line juggling is what they did in October, and we all know how that turned out. Stick to the plan – the pre-Dallas plan.