ONE MORE TIME (PRE-GAME OPINIONS)
I'm back! Sorry for the absence, I have been busy with work. I do know that the Leafs have missed the playoffs and hired Brendan Shanahan as team president. Unfortunately, tonight marks the end of the season for the Leafs, and it is against the Senators. (who also missed the playoffs)
Since this is a meaningless game, I don't have many expectations of how this game will go. What I do hope will happen is that the Leafs are able to end the season with a win, so that at least there is hope for next year. A loss would mean a better pick in the draft. Either way, the result of this game won't affect the standings dramatically.
Instead of the three things that will result in a win, I will list 3 events that I hope will occur:
1) Kessel scoring his 38th goal
Kessel has, once again, had a very successful season, offensively. He is just 2 points away to match his career high, and one goal will give him his best season for goals scored. It may seem like a long shot, but if he is able to pull this off, I will be more than happy.
2) MacIntyre getting the start
Drew MacIntrye should have every reason to believe that this has been a special week for him. On Thursday, he got his first career NHL start, and although he did not get the win, he played very well. Add to the fact that Reimer has been sub-par all season, it makes the most sense to start MacIntyre. This will be a good opportunity to apply for the back-up position next year.
3) Rielly and Gardiner as the top 2 pairing tonight
Both Rielly and Gardiner have shown signs of potentially being the "go-to-guys" on the back end in the near future. A good thing that can help improve their skills is to play the pair as if they were the top 2 defense men. It may be successful, or a disaster, but it would do wonders to work upon for next year.
My prediction for this game is: It should be a gong show, offensively. The winner of this game will have a 2 goal advantage. Hope to see you all after the game!
P.S. In case you were wondering, I do plan to occasionally write blogs about the playoffs. Also, I will discuss any trades, management changes, or anything that will happen this summer in regards to the Leafs.
P.S.S. I guess tonight is a party, so listen to this.