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Photo Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Leafs week in review: Contending?

Record

4-0-0

Toronto had a perfect record over the last eight days to move themselves 18 points clear of their nearest rivals in the Atlantic division.

Anaheim travelled to the ACC on February 5th and were dismantled by a score of 7-4. Willie and Matthews both had two goals on the game.

Two days later, one of the Stanley Cup favourites came to town as Nashville looked to get some breathing space in the tight Central division. The Leafs held a two goal lead before throwing it away in the third period – but managed to see themselves over the line for two points in OT.

Ottawa were in town on Saturday, and were put in their place with the Buds destroying them by a score of 6-3. 41 shots for the good guys and 25 shots for Ottawa does not really show just how dominate the Leafs were. This game could easily have seen the Buds hit double figures.

On Tuesday, the league’s best, and the most common pick to hoist the Stanley Cup – Tampa Bay – came to the ACC and were beaten by a score of 4-3. The Buds threw away a 3-0 lead within the space of three minutes – but they stopped the momentum and took control again. JVR won it for the good guys.

Pretty perfect week? I would agree.

Also this Auston Matthews goal against Ottawa was delicious.

Stats

Over the last four games Auston Matthews, William Nylander and Mitch Marner have SEVEN points each. Sophomore slump? Ha! I laugh in your face.

Also Kadri has four points, Gardiner has five points and 16 Leafs had at least one point. This team is fun to watch.

Season stats

Player G A P
Auston Matthews 26 21 47
William Nylander 14 31 45
Mitch Marner 12 31 43
JVR 23 12 35
Nazem Kadri 18 17 35
Jake Gardiner 4 31 35
Morgan Rielly 5 28 33
Zach Hyman 11 19 30
Paddy Marleau 18 11 29
Tyler Bozak 8 20 28

The big three are running away with the Leafs scoring race.

Jake Gardiner is being pretty good. 31 assists! Good for seventh highest in the NHL amongst defenceman.

Player of the week

How do you pick? Marner was phenomenal vs Ottawa. Matthews is consistently fantastic. Nylander is getting better with every game. Freddie has been great for months now. So who gets the nod? Errrrr.

Freddie. Freddie is worthy of his name being chanted at every Leafs game.

Conclusion

Let’s enjoy the last months of the season with the group intact. Watching this team over the last 18 months has been a pleasure. After years of suffering as a fanbase – the Leafs are actually good and they will be good for years to come.

Coming up

Columbus tonight, Pittsburgh on Saturday, Detroit on Sunday and Florida on Tuesday. Busy week.

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