Toronto Maple Leafs singing the Blues after tough road trip

ST. LOUIS, MO - FEBRUARY 2: Jake Allen
ST. LOUIS, MO - FEBRUARY 2: Jake Allen /

The Toronto Maple Leafs fall flat against the St. Louis Blues as they head back home losing three of four on the road and in need of a reset.

The annual trip out west has never been kind to the Toronto Maple Leafs and it was no different this time around. They went 1-3 after a 6-4 loss to the St. Louis Blues with question marks facing this team as they go back home.

While the Leafs are saying the right thing after each loss, there is certainly frustration because the lesson has not sunk in. Case in point, here are some comments made by some of the Leafs players after the game.

It gets to the point where you wonder if something drastic has to be done in order to get this team back on track. It is not like the Leafs’ struggles defensively just started to come about during this recent road trip and there is no sign showing that it is going to stop anytime soon.

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In their loss against the Los Angeles Kings, the main issue was that the Leafs were careless with the puck and dug themselves too large of a hole to dig out of. That was not the story in this game as they got off to a strong start and it just fell apart as the game went along.

The majority of the offence came from the fourth line and any chance the Leafs had to get back into the game, the Blue had an answer for. The second period continues to be a struggle for the Leafs and it showed with St. Louis scoring three unanswered goals.

Once again the Leafs were under siege in their own end and that has been the recipe for success against the Leafs.

The first goal scored by Vladimir Tarasenko was a bad break, but three white sweaters were looking at the puck while the Blues snipper was left alone to set up in the slot.

The second Blues goal was tough to watch as Auston Matthews was caught in no man’s land, with no one covering the point man and Joel Edmundson left alone at the side of the goal.

Matthews is able to get in the passing lane but as soon as the shot is made, no one accounts for Edmundson who had a wide open cage to throw the puck at. The only thing Frederik Andersen could have done on that play was try to hold onto the puck in his glove, but it does not excuse the blown coverage on the play.

Now instead of reliving the nightmare of Saturday night’s game by analyzing each goal, the breakdown on the third goal in the tweet below perfectly sums up the lack of awareness on the defensive zone.

If there is a positive from the game it is that Matt Martin had three assists and was directly responsible for two of the Leafs goals. While it is nice to see a fourth line player make an impact, it also shows that the other forwards struggled to get anything going.

Matthews did as much as he could against Alex Pietrangelo who was dominant at both ends and it further shows that this team needs to get their scoring depth going again.

These systematic breakdowns have become too common with the Leafs and the biggest problem is that they are not able to score enough to compensate for that.

Either this offence needs to get going again to take pressure off the defence, or the Leafs coaching staff needs to rethink their defensive strategy.

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What do the Toronto Maple Leafs need to do to get out of this slump that they have been on? Should there be something drastic done to bring in some help? Let us know in the comments below.