I loved the way Gomez played tonight. So much energy, skating so well especially on the forecheck.
Cole seems to be developing continually into a such a great leader. He seems like a genuinely good person who is having a good influence on a lot of young players on the team.
I thought Emelin looked really composed and enjoyed watching him play and move the puck nicely with crisp passes.
I didn't expect much from the Powerplay and felt the Leafs did a good job taking away the cross ice pass that they obviously know Kaberle is great at. I want to see Kaberle take more of a defined role on the PP. Subban (good game too) seems to have the puck a lot. Our success has always been off of one-timers from the point. I know he's struggled hitting the net, but I think Kaberle should be on the right point and Subban on the left - too often it seems to be the other way around.
Also I like Pacioretty but would love to see Kostitsyn on the first powerplay unit. He's a great puckhandler and we lack a dangerous presence on the half boards.
If Toronto fails to make the playoffs due to a bad second half you have to appriciate the irony from all their fans that thought they were better then they were thanks to good second half records this past few years.
If we had a half decent PP we would be in play off spot now
Ironically, I don't think it's the PP that has cost us a playoff spot - it's our inability to protect a two-goal lead. NYR are 23rd in the league in PP with 14%, St. Louis is 26th and San Jose 19th. We may have complained about a defensive or boring style but if we hold the lead in half of those games, we're holding onto a playoff spot right now. Gauthier goes out to get us an ineffective PP defenceman thinking he will bring us some of Markov's skill set when all we needed really was a defenceman that understands boxing guys out and making high percentage plays in our own end.
Game 4 of last year's playoff round, we are up on the Bruins 3-1 in the late stages of the second period - if we hold onto that lead, we probably win the series.
That inability is killing our season.