While the Leafs made that far more difficult and stressful then they needed it to be, their over-time win over the Flyers Saturday night accomplished three things.
1 – I went to bed happy. (And slightly buzzed.)
2 – They beat a tough Flyers team. Leafs Postgame
3 – The Leafs will head out for the West Coast with a respectable 76 points.
It doesn’t matter if you are a fan, a player or a part of the Leafs extensive management staff; this is the time of year where your math skills come in handy.
My math skills are average at best but thanks to my handy calculator app I was able to crunch some numbers for the Leafs Nation on a Sunday morning.
Going into Monday’s game in Anaheim the Leafs have 76 points in 65 games. That means the Leafs have 17 games left to play in the regular season. (Yeah, thanks tips.)
Here’s how it breaks down.
The Leafs need to pick up 14 points to hit the 90 point mark. 14 points in 17 games seems very attainable. Even with the Leafs issues giving up short-handed goals, defensive zone coverage and Dion Phaneuf looking lost out there at times.
If the Leafs want to hit the magical 100 point plateau they would need to pick up 24 points the rest of the way. That would mean the Leafs would have to go 12-5 or some combination of wins, losses, over-time losses and shoot-outs. With their remaining schedule I just don’t see the Leafs picking up 24 points the rest of the way.
A far more realistic expectation for the Maple Leafs this season would be 94 points. That would require them to pick up 18 points in their remaining 17 games. Yes, I realize that the Leafs schedule the rest of March is an absolute bitch. But think of it this way, David Clarkson hasn’t scored since February 4th, so he’s due. Isn’t he? #nicecontract
To be honest, I will be happy if the Leafs are able to pick up five points on this killer five game road trip they are about to embark on. That would give them 81 points with 12 games left to play. Of those 12 games, seven of them are at the ACC.
That’s why, even with all of the Leafs issues, anything less than a 94 point season will be a disappointment.
That is more than enough math for one day.
Now as it stands right now the Maple Leafs are on a collision course to face the Montreal Canadiens in the first round of the playoffs.
Through-out their long history the Leafs have faced the Habs 13 times in the post-season. However the two franchises haven’t meet in the playoffs since the spring of 1979.
Here’s hoping that PJ Stock’s “Hockey Gods” allow a Leafs and Habs playoff series to happen once again.