The sweep is dead, but the Leafs still have no chance.
Last night the Maple Leafs proved that they’re not just a pack of spineless cowards like we all thought they were, as they narrowly beat the Bruins 4-2 on home-ice. Down by two games, they were desperate, they had nothing to lose, and the bounces and hail-mary passes and penalty calls all fell in their direction. But it won’t happen twice.
The Bruins are still the better hockey team, and I fully expect them to sweep the next two games. So if you’re like me, and you’re still trying to purge your mind of terrifying flashbulb memories from the third period last night, just remember that Pain is Temporary, and that the Revenge Tour starts Thursday night at 7:10.
James van Riemsdyk puts the Leafs up 1-0 in the first period of Game 3 with a powerplay goal pic.twitter.com/5iYCD4qou8
— Jeff Veillette (@JeffVeillette) April 16, 2018
It might have been incredibly painful to watch the Leafs tally their fourth goal to seal a 4-2 lead, listen to thousands of drunk Canadians mock “Tuukka,” and watch in agony as the Bruins’ series sweep circled the drain.
But we know these Bruins. We know that a potential 3-0 series lead was within arm’s reach until the 56th minute and 25th second of Game Three. And we know that they’ll rebound in Game Four with a vengeance to squeeze the life out of the entire city of Toronto. We’ve seen it all year long. And I’d almost rather have them fight for their lives now, against these bums, than against the Lightning or a team that actually knows what the hell they’re doing.
To be clear, the Leafs still have no chance in this series. Zero chance. Everything that could have gone right last night for Toronto went extremely right, and everything that could have gone wrong for the Bruins went extremely wrong. The Bruins missed 18 shots, they rung the post four times, they didn’t get calls, they didn’t get a power play until the 40th minute, and they watched home-run passes somehow squeeze through their defenders by the Grace of the Lord Almighty himself. It won’t happen twice.
If you’ve seen even a single Bruins game this year, you’ll know that the Leafs only dug their own graves last night. There’s too much talent and too much energy embedded into this Boston lineup for them to lay down and stop fighting now. It’s just the opposite, only the very beginning of another Game-Two-style massacre that’s gonna be put on full display this Thursday in enemy territory.
Images credit to Boston Herald and NESN