Kukla's Korner Hockey
Maple Leafs general manager Dave Nonis said that the team's collapse "doesn't diminish the steps we took as an organization."
He added that in Game 1 against Boston his team looked like a "deer in the headlights", but after that "we didn't have a player who took a night off."
Nonis also said that at this point he believes that James Reimer will be back as the team's number one goalie next season.
In terms of Bozak, who is now an unrestricted free agent, Nonis explained that if the team can find a contract for him that makes sense they will sign him.
But Nonis issued a reminder that, "the (salary) cap is going down, and how we allocate our dollars is very important if we're going to remain competitive."
more from Nonis and Randy Carlyle...
I admit I am a day late on this one. I read it yesterday and decided you the reader may have had enough of Leafs talk so I did not post but did re-tweet it.
After a few emails asking me about it, I decided to post it today.
from Sean McIndoe of Grantland,
There’s a secret that Toronto fans aren’t supposed to talk about, but after what happened Monday night, I don’t care about anything anymore, so here it is: Heading into Game 7 against the Boston Bruins, Leafs fans were OK with losing.
Not "OK" as in we wouldn't care. Leafs fans wanted a win, were hoping for a win, and — in some cases — may even have talked ourselves into expecting a win. And we were ready for the three hours of agony we knew were coming. A Game 7 in the NHL playoffs is pure torture, and Leaf supporters were feeling that every bit as much as fans of the Bruins.
But there was an insurance policy, because the 2013 Leafs season was already a success. A team that hadn’t made the playoffs in seven seasons and was expected to miss them yet again had ended the drought. Young players who’d been written off as busts suddenly emerged. A franchise that floundered for a decade had finally found an identity. And though they were written off after falling behind three games to one in a series against a team that had spent the last few years kicking sand in their faces, the Leafs clawed back with a pair of gutsy wins to force a deciding game.
A loss would sting for a while, sure. But it couldn’t really hurt, not the way big losses are supposed to. It couldn’t leave a scar, whether it came in a blowout or sudden death or somewhere in between.
from the Toronto Star,
Though some Toronto Maple Leafs fans were consoled their team even made it into the playoffs, many others were bitter at their Game 7 loss to the Boston Bruins.
We compiled the top 10 bitterest tweets — sometimes hilariously so.
Whether you are a die hard Toronto Maple Leafs fan or you like to laugh at their woes, here is what they had to say.
read on for the rest...
from Damien Cox of the Toronto Star,
Defeat, in the end, came with abrupt finality, with a sense of shock and surprise and even momentary disbelief that what seemed to be the start of something special was over.
What, no more games? That’s it?
Oh my word. They lost it how?
The Maple Leafs, and their legions of fans, had dared to dream that this might become a unique spring, particularly after twice fighting off elimination to force Game 7 in their best-of-seven opening round playoff series against the favoured Boston Bruins on Monday night.
All signs were pointing to this series as a shiny new beginning, not a nightmarish end.
Courtesy of Brad Marchand...
The Bruins scored two late goals with their goalie pulled to even the score in the 3rd period to force OT, then Patrice Bergeron scored in OT to win the series.
Heartbreak for the Leafs.
the OT goal by Bergeron...
added 10:30pm, switched the original video to now include the OT goal and handshake.
added 10:28pm, Watch below as the Bruins score two late goals to send the game to OT.
Feel free to discussion the plays, the goals, the action from both games tonight.
from Seth Lakso of Bruins Blog at the Boston Globe,
With a win-or-go-home Game 7 against the Bruins at TD Garden just hours away, Maple Leafs winger Joffrey Lupul spoke confidently to members of the media from the team hotel in Boston Monday afternoon.
Lupul, who has three goals and one assist in the series, said the pressure is on the Bruins, who at one point held a three-games-to-one advantage in this first-round series.
“Everyone’s watching, the spotlight’s on,” Lupul said. “Every play is obviously a high-pressure play. It’s not a time to go out there and play tight. It’s time to not be afraid of the big moment and, obviously, you want to stick to our team game, but as individuals, it’s a great time to step up.
“We’ve won two in a row. The pressure is mostly on them. I don’t think a lot of people expected this game to even be happening, especially when we were down, 3-1.”
from Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun,
We only know this: The marvelous playoff series between the Maple Leafs and the Boston Bruins will come to an end Monday night.
And suddenly, it may not be just about winning the game, and this hard-fought series with the Bruins, it’s about the possibilities that go beyond this Game 7. As premature as it may be explore what might have seemed impossible 14 days ago.
There is a Game 7, one win left to advance, one roll of the dice, one more night for complete effort, intelligence, great goaltending, the elements that add up to playoff success.
For the first time in the post-season, the Leafs have won a home game. For the first time in the playoffs, the Leafs have beaten the Bruins twice in a row. And now the challenge: A third win in a row. They still need three wins in four games at the TD Garden to advance to Round 2.
But everything is tilting in their direction.
All the momentum - if there is such a thing at playoff time - favours the Leafs.
If you missed the news last night, the Bruins were forced to spned last night in Toronto due to mechanical issues with the team plane. They are scheduled to leave Toronto at 9:00am ET this morning.
Toronto beats Boston 2-1 tonight to force a Game 7 in Boston tomorrow at 7:00pm ET.
Along with the New York Rangers against the Washington Capitals at 8:00pm ET, it should be quite the night for hockey.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org