John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
As you probably already know, we at TLN have fully endorsed the tank. I mean, if you go to www.thetanknation.com, it brings you back here. We are committed to the cause.
But you know what? Toronto won tonight, and it was hella fun. After six straight losses, it was good to see the Leafs’ youngsters and newcomers come up big against one of the Eastern Conference’s top teams. Toronto takes it 4-3 in the shootout.
The Islanders definitely got out to a strong start tonight, but this was a tremendously even, back-and-forth game. New York is a much, much, much better team than Toronto, but the Leafs’ young roster did a great job of trading chances and keeping things close. In a 4-3 game, both teams held a lead but neither ever held a two-goal lead. Good times.
Of course, this game was probably more fun for Leafs fans than it was for Islanders fans, with each Toronto goal having some sort of feel-good significance. In the first period, Zach Hyman buried a garbage goal in front for his second career goal. In the second, Morgan Rielly went shelfie from the high slot on his 22nd birthday, while also tying his career high 29 points (in 15 less games). And lastly, in the dying moments of the third period, William Nylander scored his own second career goal to tie the game up at 3’s and send it to overtime.
In the shootout, Garret Sparks stood tall against each shooter he faced and, in the fourth round, Nikita Soshnikov finally put one past Thomas Greiss to secure the win.
Nazem Kadri had two assists tonight, but you know what Naz? It’s not your birthday. Sorry bud.
Morgan Rielly gets in tonight. He was skating well, defending well, and that powerplay goal in the second period was no joke.
Next Up, Ottawa
The Leafs will be back in action Saturday night – it’s Hockey Night in Canada from Ottawa as the Senators play host. Tune into CBC at 7:00 pm.
One Last Thing…
The real story tonight is how the Leafs are undefeated this season with TJ Brennan in the lineup
— Gas Station Sushi (@YakovMironov) March 10, 2016