The Toronto Maple Leafs have yet again failed to make it out of the first round of the playoffs. They have now lost eight straight games when they have a chance to clinch their first round series. Toronto has fallen off the biggest cliff that I can say that I have seen them fall off of since 2013. For those that don’t remember the Maple Leafs blew a 4-1 lead with ten minutes left in game 7 of the first round. Toronto gave up three straight to allow it to go into overtime. Then gave up the game winning goal in overtime and the Bruins moved on and sent the Maple Leafs home.
Here’s the thing though, that historic collapse will probably never happen ever again to any team. The Maple Leafs haven’t been right since that series in 2013. Let us take a look at the curse of the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Lack Of Playoff Success
Since the 2013 collapse, the Maple Leafs missed the playoffs from 2014-2016. Then they drafted Auston Matthews and things were suppose to look up from there. 2016-2017 playoffs come around and they lose to Washington in 6 games. The following season, they fall to Boston in seven games. In order to get better they brought former number one overall pick John Tavares to play for his childhood team. In Tavares’ first season how did the Maple Leafs season play out? Oh that’s right they lost in seven games to the Bruins yet again.
2019-2020 rolls around they make it into the playoffs via the play in tournament and lose the best of five series to Columbus. Then this year they played in the North Division which was made up of all Canadian teams in the National Hockey League. They run train in the regular season and then they blew a 3-1 series lead against the Canadiens and are now yet again out of the playoffs before the month of June.
Huge Questions Moving Forward
For starters this Maple Leafs team has paid four forwards to carry them to the promise land. That is the worst thing that you could ever do if you wanted to win a Stanley Cup Final. If those four forwards don’t produce in clutch situations of the post season, then why pay them? Auston Matthews and Mitch Marner combined for 1 goal in their seven game series against Montreal this year. Those two were no where to be found at times in the playoffs. Makes me wonder what the Maple Leafs will do this summer in free agency.
A lot of money is still on the books, and they desperately need a goaltender for the future. This team needs a goaltender, and their forwards to show up in key moments.
I understand that Maple Leafs fans will use the we didn’t have Tavares excuse. You won the first three games without him, so that excuse becomes invalid. You have to tip your cap to the best playoff goaltender when his back is up against the wall in Carey Price. Toronto is going golfing early yet again, and still they will have to wait another year for a chance to finally win a playoff matchup. A lot of changes could be coming for Toronto, so you might want to stay tuned. For now though the Maple Leafs are cursed.
-Chris Jones (@cjoneswho1212)
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