Toronto Maple Leafs: The Recipe for Success

TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 10: Frederik Andersen
TORONTO, ON - NOVEMBER 10: Frederik Andersen /

Frederik Andersen had another spectacular game for the Toronto Maple Leafs while Tomas Plekanec and co. shut down Patrice Bergeron’s line, to force a Game 7.

The Toronto Maple Leafs live and die by Frederik Andersen. The three Maple Leafs wins came when his save percentage was .952/.933/.970 and the three losses came when his save percentage was .875/.400./857.

The Leafs can score all the goals they want, but if Andersen doesn’t come up with big saves – especially against the Patrice Bergeron line – they are screwed. Game 6 was hardly a well-played game from the Leafs’ perspective.

They made countless turnovers when they tried to exit the zone, and gave the Bruins way too much offensive zone time. Most notably, Travis Dermott had an unforgettable night.

Time and time again, Dermott kept trying to do blind stretch passes that ended up on Boston’s tape. Kasperi Kapanen tried to do a fancy move in his own zone, which led to a great Bruins’ chance.

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Luckily for the Leafs, Andersen was able to shut the door and give them a chance to get back into the game and steer the game home.

The third period of Game 6 was exactly how the Leafs needed to play when holding a lead. They still pressured offensively, but for the most part, they limited Boston’s golden chances and kept all the shots to the outside.

They got huge shot blocks from Zach Hyman and Connor Brown and have finally learned how to kill a penalty.

The Leafs stayed calm when Boston pulled their goalie, but also played aggressively. This is a fast team and they are their best defensively when they pressure the other players into making split-second decisions.

The Patrick MarleauTomas PlekanecMitch Marner was dominant yet again. They not only shut the Bergeron line, they recorded two goals (Marner and Plekanec) and two assists (Marner and Plekanec).

Next: The Evolution of Tomas Plekanec

If the Leafs want to play the Tampa Bay Lightning, they will need to shut this line one last time.