Game #43 – Flames @ Leafs: 9pm (NST)

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The Leafiest of Leafy things would be to see “Big Save Dave” (aka Dave Rittich), the guy that has stone walled the Leafs all season long while a member of the Calgary Flames (1-2-0, 0.941SV%, 2.06GAA vs the Leafs this season), play his first game as a Leaf, against his former team and get absolutely LIT UP!!

At this moment I’m assuming he gets the start, but there’s been no word on that yet:

However, he was seen at Leafs practice earlier today:

A little too much red in his equipment for my liking, but that’s a sweet helmet Dave!!

In order to avoid a loss they’ll have to play a much better game than they did last night against the Montreal Canadiens. The team, not Jack Campbell and not the Canadiens, but the team, busted Toronto’s #1 puck stoppers win steak at 11 last night. They showed up late, they showed a little life and then they disappeared again. Typical.

Now, the Leafs of yesteryear would take a game like that and turn it into a 5-7 contest drought, but the team of this year has avoided that so far. They had a lull in early March, where they went 1-6-0, but they have gone a stellar 9-2-0 since then and have catapulted themselves back into the fight for 1st in the NHL (currently 2nd overall in points and 5th in points percentage). I’m not overly concerned about a single dip in play like that. In prior seasons they would have multiple examples of those lulls by game #43, so we’ll call it a one off for now.

However, if they decide to take a few games off again it will make me wonder if this team has grown at all, the trick is to find more consistency in their game and avoid those droughts. After all, it’s those 5-7 game skids that result in playoff round losses.

Morgan Rielly knows what I’m talking about:

Errrrr….. okay Morgan, maybe that’s a bad choice of words, the season started months ago and the work with it, but I think I know what you mean.

Anyway, Nicholas Robertson will hope for a better effort from his teammates as well. He played in just his 2nd game of the season last night and it wasn’t one that he’d want to remember. He saw 8 minutes of ice time (only Pierre Engvall saw less) and registered a single shot on goal. It’s tough to make a difference when you aren’t getting the minutes, so if the team can come out strong and establish a lead the coach may start to roll lines a little more, with an end result of more ice time for the Leafs prospect.

Here’s hoping for a solid night!!

Enjoy the game.