In the three games since the Winter Classic victory against Detroit, the Toronto Maple Leafs have been outscored 18-5.
James Reimer was in net tonight, getting a starting opportunity after two awful Jonathan Bernier performances. If Randy Carlyle thought that would help matters, it didn’t. The Leafs were out shot 36-26, which continues a disturbing trend over their three straight losses.
Joffrey Lupul scored the lone goal for the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 1st period. That goal cut the Hurricanes lead to one, but they scored again to close out the period up 3-1. Jordan Stall had 1 goal and 3 assists and won 1st star honours.
After two losses, Toronto Maple Leafs coach made the right choice in benching Bernier. After being pulled in the Rangers victory on Saturday, he came back with another bad performance as the Islanders won 5-3.
The hope was that Reimer might do better, but he was just as ineffective as Bernier. The goal tending situation is the biggest issue for the Leafs right now, and the rest of the season will be determined by whether Bernier and Reimer can improve.
The offence is also in shambles, and their effort on the power play has been severely lacking. going 0 for 2 tonight with the extra man. The Leafs were not able to capitalize on the Hurricanes mistakes, while the Hurricanes converted 2 of 5 power play opportunities.
After a game like this, especially following two other bad losses, the focus is going to shift on the coaching staff. With a new CEO at the helm for MLSE in Tim Leiweke, a firing would seem most likely if the Toronto Maple Leafs efforts don’t improve.
The loss also pushes them out of the 8th seed, as their goal differential drops them below the Rangers and Hurricanes.