If starting their 15th goalie of the post-lockout era wasn’t a strong enough sign that things are bad for the Toronto Maple Leafs, then Thursday’s humorous chant clinched it. During various points in a 7-1 drubbing by the Philadelphia Flyers, Buds fans sarcastically (and at times, quite loudly) chanted “Let’s go Blue Jays.”
While there are times when fans will promote local teams when times are good (usually when a given squad’s success is unusual), it’s often the comical barometer of especially bad times for a franchise.
James Mirtle points out that the team is 5-17-3 in their last 25 games, which would be a 43-point pace during a full season. It’s pretty tough to blame fans for getting sardonic about the whole situation – especially since the one plus (improving draft lottery odds) probably falls upon deaf ears considering the franchise’s lengthy struggles – but the bad times aren’t lost on players.
Phil Kessel was almost at a loss for words while discussing the defeat with Mirtle.
“I don’t know if you guys have seen something like this before because I haven’t,” Kessel said. “We just can’t figure it out. We’re trying.”
The merciful news is that the Maple Leafs only have four games left this season, with two at home. That’s plenty of time for fans to come up with another round of funny chants, but at least the suffering will end … or at least will be paused until next season, depending upon who you ask.
On the bright side: baseball season is right around the corner.
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