Well I honestly never thought that it would never actually come to this, but low and behold it has.
The 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs are three days old. Not only is there only one Canadian team that’s in it, my guys are not in it.
After the first night of the 2014 playoffs and why am I bored out of my mind?
Whoever thought that after what we witnessed this time last year, would not repeat itself.
I wanted to believe, in fact I still want to believe, but those Maple Leafs drained everything out of me.
Now, instead of competing in the greatest sports tournament in the history of the world, they are left doing whatever it is you do when you don’t qualify for the post season in the National Hockey League.
Now there are eight different series going on, pretty much all at the same time, every night of the week is now Hockey Night in Canada, yet a portion of us Canadians couldn’t give a rat’s ass who wins, or even who plays for that matter.
Every member of Toronto Maple Leafs Nation jumps on someone else’s bandwagon. I am on St. Louis’.
Whose are you on?
Anyone care to send me a Blues white jersey?
Of course a couple of things happened that forces me to switch to another team for possibly two full months, a good three weeks of absolutely brutal hockey from my team, including a 1-0 shutout loss/soccer score to the Ottawa Senators. You know things are bad when we can’t even score against them. What has been slightly more pathetic was watching Randy Carlyle talk to the media one last time, we hope.
END TO THE SEASON
They needed to win six games, I think they only won two (vs Flames and vs Bruins) then they got embarrassed by teams like Winnipeg, Tampa, Florida and the Sens.
What was worse was that Columbus wound up tearing it up, they had two games more to play that Toronto and I think they won all but one. Are you kidding me?! Columbus?
Part of the only thing that kept me together during that final stretch was me telling myself the Jackets would fall apart and Leafs would get their shit together, simultaneously, and the final two wild card spots would come down to last Saturday night, Leafs in Ottawa, win and you are in.
Didn’t happen, not even fucking close.
Where the hell did things go wrong?
I GUESS I HAD TO SEE THINGS GOING the wrong way last month when they played in Washington that Sunday afternoon and gave up a 3-0 lead to the capitals before the game was 10 minutes old. One of the improvements that I have noticed in this team, particularly since Randy Carlyle took over, was their ability to rebound after falling behind. One thing Carlyle has managed to do quite well is get this team to fight back in games and make things interesting. Another case was the New Jersey game which was a 3-2 loss exactly one week later. During that 8-game losing streak, Toronto lost 3 of those games by 4-2 scores. They were in every single one of those game (that is the painful part), yet they never showed any fight at any point. Most fans would be hard pressed to find the date of Dion Phaneuf’s last fight. Or the last day which he showed any fight. Last season, Toronto did well because most other teams were afraid to come into the ACC and play, in the late going of this season, a game in Toronto was the remedy for just about everybody. The only possible ‘defence’ I have for Dion Phaneuf is someone in the media suggested that being the captain in Toronto is far too much for most people to handle. Keep him on the team but take the ‘C’ off his jersey, let him worry about playing the game, nothing more and not a damn thing less. Just let him play his game…
There are so many theories as to what went wrong.
So…instead of engaging in all kinds of lively debate of all the ups and downs of a first-round playoff opponent which we don’t even have, we get to ‘celebrate’ ‘winning’ the eighth overall draft pick in the Entry Draft this summer (BFD).
This year’s Draft will be held in Philadelphia June 27-28 (still don’t care).
Edmonton will be the first Canadian team to choose that weekend, picking 3rd overall, Calgary picks in 4th and the Leafs and Jets are 8-9 (still don’t care).
A very brief rundown of the top prospects in this year’s draft will include names such as William Nylander (Modo), Nikolaj Ehlers (Halifax Mooseheads), Jake Virtanen (Calgary Hitmen) and Brendan Perlini (Niagara Ice Dogs). Interestingly enough, of those picks which are ranked right around where the Leafs are selecting, none of them are defencemen (and, don’t care about any of that shit either).
Now with the disappointing end to what was otherwise a wild season, now Team Canada’s entry at the World Championships is going to look a little like a Maple Leafs practice.
For the fans out there of James Reimer (myself being one of them), news broke not too long ago that he is going to be joining Team Canada at the World Championships which are next month I believe. Defenceman Morgan Reilly is also planning on playing. I just hope neither of them gets hurt. And Nazem Kadri was added yesterday. He will also be on Hockey Night in Canada on Easter Saturday, should be real interesting to see what has been on his mind these last few days.
How many of us will be closely following that now? Me, if I remember that they are on.
May is a tough month to be following hockey, especially when your team isn’t in it, and your Twitter timeline happens to be dominated by the other two teams, Jays and Raptors, and pretty soon we’ll be throwing the CFL in there too.
The Raptors are opening up their first playoff run right now against the Brooklyn Nets. Brookly currently leads by four points at the half, 50-46. Lots of home side jitters in that first half but this couldn’t be a more winnable game for the dinosaurs.
Last May throughout most of Tdot, Toronto was a special place to be, seven playoff games, the atmosphere was nuts, you can’t replace that with anything. It is going to be a lot less exciting this time around.
HIRING OF BRENDAN SHANAHAN
However to spice things up a tad, or at least try to, Maple Leafs Sports and Entertainment lured Brendan Shanahan to help take this team over. Everybody short of a full brain is literally expecting this guy to turn the entire team around all by himself, and in minimal time.
Do you airheads remember Brian Burke?
I guess if there is any consolation I can take from this season-turned-disaster is that the last team we beat this season was the Boston Bruins.
One last press conference with Carlyle is available right here:
Few last thoughts on this season:
-going with 2 goalies wound up being a bad idea.
-did last year’s loss wind up effecting them worse than anyone ever could have imagined??! We all knew they were a playoff team, then 8 straight losses happened. Lupul said it would haunt him for the rest of his life so I guess that would be a ‘yes’…
-the only thing that’s consistent to me is NO LEADERSHIP
-I think there are more questions now than there were at the start of the season.