Toronto Maple Leafs v Philadelphia Flyers

Leafs fall to Flyers, lose their seventh straight


The collapse continues.

The Toronto Maple Leafs, in a bid to make it back-to-back playoff appearances, have now lost seven straight games. Their latest defeat in this free fall came Friday night to the Philadelphia Flyers, as the Leafs lost by a final score of 4-2. Not even a new franchise record for the fastest goal to begin a period – off the stick of James van Riemsdyk four seconds into the second period – could help the Leafs on this night.

Currently tied with three other teams at 80 points for the two remaining playoff positions in the Eastern Conference Wild Card, the Leafs are on the post-season bubble but will remain in the 10th position. Perhaps the only positive from the night is that the Columbus Blue Jackets, part of that four-team logjam in the East, also lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

On Friday, the Leafs found themselves down by a pair of goals in the second period and just couldn’t recover. Now the question becomes, can they recover from this latest losing streak?

After PTO, Upshall signs one-year deal with Blues

Florida Panthers v Ottawa Senators
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Scottie Upshall has parlayed his training camp tryout into a contract with St. Louis.

On Monday, the Blues agreed to a one-year, two-way deal with the veteran forward, worth $700,000 at the NHL level. The deal comes after Upshall spent all of training camp and the preseason impressing the Blues his speed and skating ability, no small feat for a 31-year-old veteran with over 500 NHL games on his odometer.

But where Upshall fits in the Blues lineup — and within the organization — remains to be seen.

The club has plenty of depth up front and Upshall isn’t coming off a terrific campaign, having scored just eight goals and 15 points in 63 games with Florida last season. That said, he showed enough to be just one of a handful of veterans on PTOs to score a contract.

Panthers’ Crouse is going back to junior

2015 NHL Draft - Round One
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Lawson Crouse is going back to junior. The big 18-year-old winger confirmed it today on Twitter.

Crouse was drafted 11th overall in June by the Florida Panthers. Despite the club’s belief that Crouse could make “an immediate impact” on the roster, he finished the preseason with just two shots and one assist in three games.

Crouse will return to the OHL’s Kingston Frontenacs, with whom he’ll look to improve on his modest point totals from last season.

“I don’t think there’s any pressure on the kid,” coach Gerard Gallant said last week. “If he doesn’t make the team this year he goes back to junior … and will have a lot of success.”