It was another frustrating night in the RBC last night. It's hard to figure out this team. They look good in some spots in a game, but look really bad in others. One problem is that when they do look bad, the other team usually takes advantage. Another problem is that when they look good, they can't seem to take full advantage. Again we controlled most of the 1st period of play, but ended up skating off the rink with a 1-1 tie. That Sundin goal at the end of the period completely killed our momentum. We still can't seem to put forth a consistent 60 minute game.
Of course, there is still the stupid penalty issue. Committing enough penalties so that you give up two 5 on 3 goals in a single period is not going to win you many games. To the Canes credit, they did mount a comeback after falling behind 3-1 after 2 periods, but to their fault they allowed the Leafs to take a 4-3 lead again shortly after they tied it. The refs ruined what could have been an excellent last minute by calling a phantom interference call on Erik Cole right off of a face off with 50 clicks left. On the same play Eric Staal got knocked to the ice with nothing called. I don't get it. Why call tick tack interference in the last minute if you aren't going to call everything? The refs seem to usually let things go on face offs, like when Williams got tripped in Edmonton right before a goal with no call. Oh well, I can't blame it all on the officiating, we are definitely missing something out there. I hope we figure it out soon, because we keep falling further and further behind our rivals.
It seems the reports of Cole being injured were over-blown. Cole played, and played well although he didn't seem to play his normal physical game. I see on the super stat sheet that he had 3 hits. Overall the Leafs outhit us, 42-25, and that's not good. As a team, we certainly were not as physical as we needed to be. Keith Aucoin was recalled from Albany to play tonight and interestingly enough, he played more minutes than Kevyn Adams, Craig Adams, Trevor Letowski, and Chad LaRose. That's weird, although Keith looked pretty good, but he still shouldn't get more time than our regulars. He even got power play time. I wonder if people are sick that we don't know about?
The team had to get on a plane for Tampa Bay right after getting cleaned up after the game. Tomorrow night we will probably see John Grahame get another game in net for us. Maybe he will be able to shut down his old mates. We need someone to step up and steal a game and we definitely need people to stay out of the penalty box! Please!!
Time for me to sign off. Let's Go Canes!
The Edgar Winter Group