If you’re unfamiliar, Kombucha Girl is shown in the GIF below drinking the vinegary, sweet drink and going back and forth on if it’s good or not. After watching the game last night… same, girl.
Ugh, Gross: Nothing like dominating the game and giving up the first goal anyways on the second shot of the night, eh? The Leafs looked settled, motivated, hungry, and yet, a goal down 11:30 into the game. It had been all Leafs up to that point but as fate usually has it, a Mark Pysyk shot fools Anderson and the Leafs are down. Bitter, even vinegary, way to start the game.
Wait a minute…: Open those eyes, lady! A strong second period has me feeling all sorts of sweet! John Tavares finally scored and got the monkey off his back. He still looked pretty awful and sluggish in the game but a goal is good for his mentality, and if you’re scoring while you’re sucking, imagine how many you’ll pot when you’re actually playing good?!
Goals by Nylander and Matthews made it three unanswered for the Buds and with a little less than the full 20 minutes of the third left to play, it looked like cruise control for the Leafs. Yes, Anderson was booted from the game, but Hutchinson has looked alright recently so why not just have some faith?
No, no, no: I swear the Leafs players should get cuts out of every mediocre nobody player who shows up against the “high-flying, offense juggernaut Leafs team” and has a career night. Mark Pysyk was the guy who decided to go Gretzky on this occasion and completely blew the Leafs out of the water.
Jonathan Huberdeau and Mike Hoffman chipped in goals, but Pysyk’s empty-netter hattrick saw the Panthers cap a four-goal third period and completed the comeback in a game where they were dead in the water.
Well, maybe it’s not THAT bad…: So, is Hutch bad again? Is the D-Core strong enough to contend down the stretch? Can the Leafs overcome losing to divisional opponents? Is this a playoff team? All good questions. The honest answer? I have no idea, but I do have opinions… all of which mimic kombucha girl even more!
Is Hutchinson a good enough back up? Nope, the Leafs should be looking to upgrade and should be prioritizing a move for a goalie over a defenseman. Georgiev anyone?
Is the D-Core good enough? Yes! Rasmus Sandin was awesome last night, Jake Muzzin was great, Barrie was okay, Ceci was fine, Dermott wasn’t great but has been solid this year, and Rielly is still out. Lot’s more positives in this group than negatives.
Can the Leafs overcome dropping points to divisional opponents? There are thirty games left in the schedule. Have the Leafs put themselves behind the 8-ball by playing terribly against the Panthers? Of course, but there is a LOT of hockey left. Just win games.
Is this a playoff team? 1000% it is. Look at the Blue Jays for years throughout the 2000s. They played in the AL East, a notoriously tough division, and lost out because of it, left to scrap for a wildcard spot. Those teams were better than their record suggested and the same goes for the Leafs.