Toronto Maple Leafs: Week in review


Tuesday vs the San Jose Sharks

Keefe decided to start Jack Campbell against the Sharks, with Calle Rosen drawing in and Rasmus Sandin sitting. 

The Leafs struggled early. Less than a minute in, a giveaway in their own zone forced Campbell to make a big save on Timo Meier. Although the Leafs had their fair share of chances, the Sharks struck first on the powerplay, Evander Kane tipping in Brent Burns’ point shot. The score going into the first intermission was still 1–0. Early in the second period, Auston Matthews picked up a loose puck to score goal number 46, tying the game up at one. Following a weird bounce off both the glass and an official, BLANK Suomela managed to beat Campbell, making it 2–1. The Sharks continued their barrage, and with the shots on the period 9–1 for the California team, Campbell was forced to make this save.

Mitch Marner managed to tie the game at two with a highlight-reel goal.

The game went into the second intermission with the score stuck at 2–2. Less than six minutes into the final frame, the Sharks retook the lead, once again following an odd bounce. Try as they might, the Leafs simply could not break Martin Jones.

Kane scored his second of the night and Radim Simek potted the empty netter. The Sharks downed the Leafs by a score of 5–2.

Thursday vs the Los Angeles Kings

Sandin drew back into the lineup (Rosen the healthy scratch), and Frederik Andersen started in net. This was also the first time the Leafs and Kings have faced off since the midseason trade that sent Campbell and Kyle Clifford to Toronto and Trevor Moore to LA.

The Kings had chances early on, but Andersen shut the door.

Despite opportunities both ways, neither team managed to score. The game went to first intermission 0–0 with shots on goal in favour of LA, 11–5. The most notable part of that period was Drew Doughty laying a huge hit on his former teammate.

Early in the second period, the Leafs had a flurry of shorthanded chances, but could not beat Jonathan Quick.

The rest of the period was mainly in favour of the Leafs but the second intermission came with the score frozen at 0–0. Neither team scored in the third period, and regulation ended. After an overtime in which neither team scored, the game went into the shootout. Neither team scored in the first round of the shootout. In the second round, once again, neither team scored (Auston Matthews whiffing on the puck). In the third round, both Anze Kopitar and William Nylander scored, making a fourth round necessary. Adrian Kempe scored, Mitch Marner did not, and the Kings beat the Leafs by a score of 1–0.

Friday vs the Anaheim Ducks

Prior to the game, the Leafs activated defenceman Cody Ceci from injured reserve. Ceci missed over a month with a high ankle sprain. In a corresponding move, the club sent down defensemen Timothy Liljegren. Keefe made the decision to scratch Sandin, while Ceci slotted in next to Calle Rosen.

Just over three minutes into the game, a miscommunication between Ceci and Rosen led to the Ducks taking the lead, with Carter Rowney left alone and getting the goal.

There were some shaky moments early in the game, including a sequence which led to Travis Dermott preventing a goal.

However, Jack Campbell was called upon to make some difficult saves in the latter part of the first period and he delivered.

The game went to first intermission with the Ducks up 1–0. The Leafs came on strong to start the second period but could not beat John Gibson

With the Ducks on the powerplay, Campell made a save point blank to keep the score 1–0

On the Ducks’ second shot of the third period, Adam Henrique doubled up the lead. Directly after the goal, Gibson left the game, Ryan Miller coming into the game in relief. Sheldon Keefe pulled Campbell early, and with three minutes left in the game, William Nylander beat Miller blocker side.

The Leafs could not find the equalizer, and the game ended 2–1.


Quick facts

  • The game on Thursday against the Kings was Zach Hyman’s 300th regular season game as well as Kasperi Kapanen’s 200th. 

  • In accordance with one of the NHL’s most confusing rules, both Jonathan Quick and Frederik Andersen were awarded shutouts following Thursday’s game.
  • Thursday night marked the first time the Leafs have been shutout this season.
  • Kevlar/Cutproof material will be readily available for players to prevent skate cuts (similar to what happened to Ilya Mikheyev earlier this season) 

  • William Nylander hit 30 goals on Friday night for the first time in his career. 
  • There were many updates on the injured Leafs this week. Cody Ceci returned on Friday night, Morgan Rielly is now listed as day to day (has not played since January 12th when he sustained a fractured foot) and Mikheyev is expected to play again this season.

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