Friday, March 7

Blue And White Beat the Black and Yellow Black and Blue

Beware the ides of March, or the eyes of March: whichever. I don’t really care which. Just beware of March. With games against Boston (tonight), the Devils on Saturday and then a home and home against the Flyers that could arguably be the two most important games to the history of Canadian hockey since the Summit series. Then Buffalo, the Islanders, Buffalo again, otwa, Boston/Boston, Montreal.
This is what it comes down to. This month. I don’t give a care about before or NTC’s or will he or won’t he. I don’t care about math or home ice advantage…all I care about is this month. You want to know how I really feel? The whole season comes down to these games in March. It’s an oft used expression but this is the team’s playoffs.

Just to let you know…it's Friday afternoon and my son is eating a fruit roll up, saying “mmmm…” with every bite, sitting on my lap and watching Sponge Bob. Due to a play date with the girl my son is starting to call his first Ex-wife, I had to watch the game on Leafs TV. I wrote the above before the game and I am happy to say that I still stand behind it.
Is it just me or are the Leafs and the Bruins polar opposites right now?

First thing I thought was that…we deserved that game. We deserved to watch that game and they deserved to play it. Second thing I thought was that I had no idea Belak, Gill and Kilger were that big a problem in the room.
(Those are the jokes folks)I always like when the team looks like its having fun. And with as many pretty, lucky bounces as a late era Roger Moore James Bond, how could you not? Look, let’s face it; Toskala is going to take care of the net. Mats is gonna score, if anyone else can with some kind of consistency, than this isn't a bad team. If you have read HS/HS with any consistency you would note, Greener and I with very few exceptions, always believing. But I am starting to see that almost just isnt good enough.
The key to Saturday’s game will be the special team and continuing the pace of 14 PPG in the past 11 games. That will go a long way to beating Brodeur – who was clearly the difference the last time they met. And 4 power play goals goes even further in achieving that. You get 4 power play goals in a game, I don’t care who you are playing, you’re going to win every single one of them.

What else can I say? Well how about your Captain having six goals and seven assists in his last seven games? Or his 13th 30 goal season? 1300th Game? The King. I heart you Mats.

I will admit though that when I go to Pension Plan Puppets, I have to avert my eyes lest I see how far we have slid for the slide for Stamkos. Last I looked I think we were at a 12% chance. What is it now? NO - don't tell me.

Leafs 8, Zombies 2

What goes around comes around is a phrase I probably, in my life, have used, maybe twice, three times. Here is the fourth: After having to lose to the narcoleptic Tim Thomas/Boston Bruins so many times the past two seasons, I guess what goes around, comes around, as the Leafs went into the Boston building and kicked the Jesus out of the Bruins, sending affable Michiganer Thomas home early for a night of intense self reflection.

It was just one of those nights for Toronto where things just kept getting righter. After a shaky start to the first, the wheel of fortune just began spinning for the Leafs as the the bell began to toll for the Bruins, and all the metaphors I'm using.

The Bruins didn't actually play as badly as the score suggests as the Leafs scored some lucky, weird goals on their way to this hilariously huge win. Let's just say that the final score was 5-2. Lucky goals or no, the Leafs earned this one and deserved to score bunch of them. The set-up from McCabe to Mats with the fake slapper to pass for the putt was deliciouso. And scoring 4 powerplay goals was fist-in-air-time. I think they would have had one more except for that Maurice put out a non-powerplay kid-line at the end, and they weren't really trying to score out of respect. It was just a fun game to watch with the Leafs on the right side of an 8 goal windfall. Look, it's the least we all deserve.

You can really see how a coach's temperature is reflected in his club. For instance, when Pat Quinn ran our bench, the only time he took a time-out from kicking someones ass was to smoke a cigar or have a heart attack. He was an intense son of a bitch and so were the Leafs. Ahhhh, a season full of intensity...sigh. Sorry, I just went to heaven there for a minute.

To that point, I don't know what Claude Julien does with his free time, but I bet it's right on the same level as making string art or washing the dishes. Studies now show that two Julien's, taken with or without food, will cause coma-like symptoms in guys called Greener. Maybe it's why I'm only awesome without an NHL job, but it seems to me that as the leader of the club, when your team is getting it's collective ass handed to it in your own home, it's up to, say, THE COACH, to get the ship righted again. Like, Claude, I don't about saying something on the bench to your army of zombies who are forced to walk the Earth in an crushing, defensive limbo, eating the brains out of the game of hockey?! Don't want to yell? Well, I can understand, you don't want to wake the 4,000 fans nodding off in the stands. Every time the camera found him he was just standing there with a sheepish look on his face.

This man is the thing in turkey meat that makes you fall asleep at 5:30 on Thanksgiving Day.

You know, I get it, if it wins, it plays...but it's not even working anymore. The Bruins are dropping out of the playoff hunt because division teams like the Leafs who see them every second game have finally figured out how to handle a team that starts trapping in the first period. When the Bruins ownership finally gets wind of that, I'll prepare another picture: "Hey, Claude, you're fired!"