December 21, 2007

A Disheartening List

Another last-minute loss for the Buds last night, 2-1 to Tampa Bay. Another sublime effort in net by Vesa Toskala all for naught. Most disturbing of all, another loss to a no-name goaltender. Who the hell is Karri Ramo!?

It was the third straight game where Leafs captain Mats Sundin failed to record a point and, subsequently, the Leafs' third straight loss. The secondary offence just isn't there. With the Sundin line finally slowing down, Toronto has only bagged four goals in their last three games. That just ain't going to cut it, folks. Teams are getting it - shut down Sundin and no matter how well Toskala plays, the Leafs are beatable.

Darcy Tucker, Jason Blake, and Kyle Wellwood deserve the lion's share of the blame. I don't know what the heck is wrong with Tucker, but he's a shadow of his former self. He simply isn't contributing, at all, to this team right now. The same goes for Wellwood, who I think needs to be moved to the wing on a permanent basis. He was to be counted on heavily this season, but has only registered eight points in 20 games. As for Jason Blake, he's been a bust, plain and simple. Not one of his only five goals have come on the power play, which he was supposed to contribute to heavily.

I figured Karri Ramo, the rookie who was between the pipes for the Tampa Bay Lightning last night, would get a "W" against Toronto. It follows a most-disturbing trend from the first 35 games of the campaign. Here's a list of goaltender's that the Leafs should have defeated, but failed to do so, so far this season:

Danny Sabourin - Pittsburgh Penguins backup goalie

Patrick Lalime - Chicago Blackhawks backup goalie, who really, really sucks

Jocelyn Thibault - Buffalo Sabres backup goalie, who sports a nasty .862 save percentage

Johan Hedberg - Atlanta Thrashers backup goalie

Stephen Valiquette - New York Rangers backup goalie, who has started only four games

Carey Price x 3 - Montreal Canadiens backup goalie, who I'll reluctantly admit is pretty good

Tuukka Rask - Boston Bruins third-string goalie, who beat the Leafs in his NHL debut

Alex Auld - Boston Bruins backup goalie, who was in the minors a day before he beat the Leafs

John Grahame - Carolina Hurricanes backup goalie, who sports an ugly .878 save percentage

Karri Ramo - Tampa Bay Lightning third-string goalie, who beat the Leafs in his first-career NHL start

Not exactly candidates for the Vezina Trophy, eh? Brutal.

I need a drink...