stats
globeinteractive.com: Making the Business of Life Easier

   Finance globeinvestor   Careers globecareers.workopolis Subscribe to The Globe
The Globe and Mail /globeandmail.com
Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels
space


Search

space
  This site         Tips

  
space
  The Web Google
space
   space



space

  Where to Find It


Breaking News
  Home Page

  Report on Business

  Sports

  Technology

space
Subscribe to The Globe

Shop at our Globe Store


Print Edition
  Front Page

  Report on Business

  National

  International

  Sports

  Arts & Entertainment

  Editorials

  Columnists

   Headline Index

 Other Sections
  Appointments

  Births & Deaths

  Books

  Classifieds

  Comment

  Education

  Environment

  Facts & Arguments

  Focus

  Health

  Obituaries

  Real Estate

  Review

  Science

  Style

  Technology

  Travel

  Wheels

 Leisure
  Cartoon

  Crosswords

  Food & Dining

  Golf

  Horoscopes

  Movies

  Online Personals

  TV Listings/News

 Specials & Series
  All Reports...

space

Services
   Where to Find It
 A quick guide to what's available on the site

 Newspaper
  Advertise

  Corrections

  Customer Service

  Help & Contact Us

  Reprints

  Subscriptions

 Web Site
  Advertise

  E-Mail Newsletters

  Free Headlines

  Globe Store New

  Help & Contact Us

  Make Us Home

  Mobile New

  Press Room

  Privacy Policy

  Terms & Conditions


GiveLife.ca

    

PRINT EDITION
Leafs need to get away from it all to regroup, regain their winning ways
space
space
By DAVID SHOALTS
  
  

Email this article Print this article
Monday, December 10, 2018 – Page B11

The extended stretch on the road, beginning Tuesday against the Carolina Hurricanes, could not have come at a better time for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

There were too many signs they were susceptible to outside influences, that they still have much to learn despite all the rosy projections and staying at home among the usual noise would not help in that regard. Better to get on the road for the week ahead and clear all those young minds on the team.

The most immediate problem that needs to be nipped in the bud was all of that misplaced aggression against the Boston Bruins on Saturday. Put aside the rare bad outing by goaltender Frederik Andersen and it was largely responsible for the 6-3 loss at TD Garden, the most unfriendly rink in the NHL for this edition of the Leafs.

While there was much provocation from the Bruins, it certainly appears the Leafs were listening a little too much to the fuss on social and conventional media after Detroit Red Wings defenceman Niklas Kronwall sent Auston Matthews into the boards in last Thursday's home loss.

There was no shortage of fans screaming on social media about the lack of retribution by any of Matthews's teammates. Certain media types also got into the act, moaning about how in the good old days someone would have quickly clocked Kronwall.

Leafs head coach Mike Babcock at first dismissed such talk and then succumbed at the morning skate before the Bruins game.

"In the old days, what you used to do is you could skate around in warm-up, you could growl at each other and it actually made a difference because there was someone out there that could actually whack you," Babcock said. "It doesn't work like that now and you're not expected, if someone hits you hard, you're not expected to take a penalty.

You're expected to keep playing, so it's different."

Bruins defenceman Charlie McAvoy, himself just back in action after a concussion, went after Leafs star Mitch Marner on the first shift of the game. That prompted a third-period revenge hit on McAvoy from Leafs winger Zach Hyman, who wound up fighting another Bruin and getting tossed from the game.

Hyman had a hearing with the NHL department of player safety on Sunday and was suspended for two games.

And so it went. The Leafs wound up taking five penalties in the second period. They allowed two goals to the Bruins in that stretch, one of them on the power play. When you are short-handed for that long it also limits your scoring chances, although at the end of the game the Leafs didn't see much wrong with their approach.

"I liked the way we responded and [stuck] up for each other," Andersen said. "Hopefully it'll be something that can tighten the group even more in the future."

Well, Babcock didn't seem to see it that way. He might have been thinking the Leafs just got back to full strength with William Nylander's return and all they have to show for it are two consecutive losses to teams below them in the standings.

That does not bode well for Thursday's meeting with their Atlantic Division rival, and the first-place team over all in the NHL, the Tampa Bay Lightning.

"We just had a real good run where we got five wins and an overtime loss and now we've got to regroup," Babcock said.

"You want your ups to be longer than your downs and sometimes when you don't play as good it's a good message to you, you've got to be a lot better.

"I think we've got to be a lot more competitive than we were the last two nights. It's great that we had a good little run there, now we've got to regroup and have another one."

Regrouping means paying attention to how teams such as the Bruins and a few others have figured out how to beat the Leafs by fore-checking hard and then plugging up the neutral zone so the Leaf skaters can't get moving.

Thursday's game is the first of the season against the Lightning, who have a six-game winning streak going and opened a six-point gap in the Atlantic race over the second-place Leafs.

The Bolts can be expected to serve up the same treatment to Toronto.

"You've just got to be patient," Leafs centre John Tavares said. "Good teams with good structure don't give you the middle of the ice very much and clog up the neutral zone, and have a good counter game.

"You've just got to be patient and not play them hard and not give them any easy odd-man rushes or any time and space, especially with some of the weapons that they have. We just didn't do a good enough job of that [against Boston]."


Huh? How did I get here?
Return to Main Allan_Maki Page
Subscribe to
The Globe and Mail
 

Email this article Print this article

space  Advertisement
space

Need CPR for your RSP? Check your portfolio’s pulse and lower yours by improving the overall health of your investments. Click here.

Advertisement

7-Day Site Search
    

Breaking News



Today's Weather


Inside

Rick Salutin
Merrily marching
off to war
Roy MacGregor
Duct tape might hold
when panic strikes


Editorial
Where Manley is going with his first budget




space

Columnists



For a columnist's most recent stories, click on their name below.

 National


Roy MacGregor arrow
This Country
space
Jeffrey Simpson arrow
The Nation
space
Margaret Wente arrow
Counterpoint
space
Hugh Winsor  arrow
The Power Game
space
 Business


Rob Carrick arrow
Personal Finance
space
Drew Fagan arrow
The Big Picture
space
Mathew Ingram arrow
space
Brent Jang arrow
Business West
space
Brian Milner arrow
Taking Stock
space
Eric Reguly arrow
To The Point
space
Andrew Willis arrow
Streetwise
space
 Sports


Stephen Brunt arrow
The Game
space
Eric Duhatschek arrow
space
Allan Maki arrow
space
William Houston arrow
Truth & Rumours
space
Lorne Rubenstein arrow
Golf
space
 The Arts


John Doyle arrow
Television
space
John MacLachlan Gray arrow
Gray's Anatomy
space
David Macfarlane arrow
Cheap Seats
space
Johanna Schneller arrow
Moviegoer
space
 Comment


Murray Campbell arrow
Ontario Politics
space
Lysiane Gagnon arrow
Inside Quebec
space
Marcus Gee arrow
The World
space
William Johnson arrow
Pit Bill
space
Paul Knox arrow
Worldbeat
space
Heather Mallick arrow
As If
space
Leah McLaren arrow
Generation Why
space
Rex Murphy arrow
Japes of Wrath
space
Rick Salutin arrow
On The Other Hand
space
Paul Sullivan arrow
The West
space
William Thorsell arrow
space





Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels
space

© 2003 Bell Globemedia Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Help & Contact Us | Back to the top of this page