The Toronto Maple Leafs didn’t play well against the St. Louis Blues on Thursday. Randy Carlyle was blunt in his assessment.
According to Jonas Siegel of TSN Radio 1050, Carlyle said the Leafs played “totally brain-dead” in some areas of what was a 6-3 loss to the Blues.
The Blues built up a three-goal lead in the first period, capped off by Derek Roy’s eighth goal of the season, which came at the 16:10 mark. That resulted in Leafs goalie James Reimer getting pulled in favor of Jonathan Bernier.
It didn’t get much better for Toronto after that.
The Leafs fell behind by four goals early in the second period, before making things somewhat interesting with two late goals in the third period to cut the St. Louis lead to two.
But it was far too little, too late. David Backes scored into an empty net to wipe out the very small chance of a Leafs comeback.
The Leafs have now lost three in a row to begin one of their most difficult stretch of games this season. They lost to the Boston Bruins and L.A. Kings prior to Thursday.
They return home for one game, and it’s against the defending champions, the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday.
Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.
Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.
While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.
Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.
It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.
“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”
Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.
Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.
Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.
“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”