The Toronto Maple Leafs’ first home playoff game since 2004 – there have been two lockouts since then – didn’t quite go as planned.
The visiting Boston Bruins silenced the crowd at the Air Canada Centre and outside in Maple Leafs Square with a 5-2 victory to take Game 3 of the series.
The Bruins should be used to spoiling big playoff parties in Canadian cities. In 2011, the Bruins won the Stanley Cup in a Game 7 victory over the Canucks in Vancouver.
And the 2013 Bruins seemed rather indifferent to the emotions of all those Toronto hockey fans.
“I understand it’s their first playoff game in a while, but it’s just another game, just another building,” Bruins’ forward David Krejci told the National Post. “Obviously it was loud, but it’s just another game.”
Those who had hoped to attend the first playoff game in Toronto since 2004 had to dig deep into their wallets, too.
Cheap tickets were going for as low as $205 at Stubhub. More expensive tickets were nearing the $1,000-mark.
A lot of money, but no victory for the Leafs, who now trail in the series 2-1.
“We did a lot of good things,” Leafs’ head coach Randy Carlyle told the Toronto Star. “But the mistakes we made aren’t going to allow us to win many hockey games.”
You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.
We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.
“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.
These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.
Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.
It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.
With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.
It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.
Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:
It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).
As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.
Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:
This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.
Update: Bullet dodged?