Monday, October 09, 2006

Game Recap: Leafs 2 - Panthers 1 (SO)

The first home win of the season for the Leafs, although they could have easily lost thanks to Auld... his performance was something special.

The Leafs dominated large sections of the game, and had five or six point blank chances, including numerous posts. Auld stood on his head, and really deserved better than a shut-out loss. Good for Leafs TV for at least giving him the first star.

Late in the game, an awkward looking collision between Bertuzzi and Kubina, and it looks like Kubina mave have popped his knee. It didn't look good as he left, which will mean Belak will be back on D if he misses any time. He has easily been the most steady Leaf D-man in the last three games, he will be missed.

I hate the shootout, even if the Buds win, but they were full marks for the two points tonight. Nice job Tucker!

The Good:

Kyle Wellwood was easily the most dangerous player on the ice. His skating has really improved, and he was flying around the ice in Briere-esque fashion. His ability to handle the puck at top speed is really helping his game develop rapidly.

Great goaltending again from Raycroft, although his one area of weakness, his lateral movement, was exposed on more than one occasion. However, he played well (again) and is showing no signs of repeating last years debacle.

Hal Gill. Yep, that Hal Gill. He used his size to handle Bertuzi down low more than once, and used his reach to break up a number of Panther rushes. He didn't try to do too much, and played a solid game.

Peca was almost 100% on face offs tonight, and while he isn't showing up on the scoresheet, he does so many little things right. Steen also had an effective match, generating a few chances and playing smart responsible hockey.

The Bad:

The Leafs powerplay group gets a nod here, as they had some trouble dealing with the high-pressure of the Panthers penalty killers and failed to generate many scoring chances.

Tomas Kaberle seems to be suffering in the past few games with his legs. He started the first game of the season strong, but in recent games has been missing his typically fluid skating. It may be that the time he missed during camp is catching up with him.

The Ugly:

Ponikarovsky had a rough game, missing many passes, opportunities and ultimately taking a stupid penalty while the Leafs were already down a man. He hasn't been as effective this season as he was last, and Maurice pulled him from the #1 line late in favor of Darcy Tucker, who played very well. He has yet to bring his A game to the table, we'll see if his late-game demotion gives him a kick in the butt.

No comments:

Post a Comment