Okay, so maybe my prediction of the Leafs as a seventh-to-10th place finisher was a bit premature. After grabbing points in seven straight, Toronto lost its third in a row last night — a game I took in at the ACC (my second ever!) — 5-2 to Joel Bydevaate’s Calgary Flames. That, after falling 3-2 in Chicago on Friday.
First off, it was cool to check out the game, but when the highlight of the night was the foot-long pizza hot dog I ate…well, then that doesn’t say much for the Leafs (although to their credit, the hot dog was off the hook). The Monster gave up a pair of ugly goals to Jarome Iginla and Eric Nystrom before the two-minute mark of the first and was pulled after Dustin Boyd made it 3-1 just before the midway point of the period. Francois Beauchemin scored between and Matt Stajan added one in the second to cut it to 3-2, but Iginla and Jay Bouwmeester scored in the third to wrap it up.
The Leafs actually ended up outshooting Calgary 40-22 (including 20-4 in the second alone), and really, none of those 22 Flamer shots were much in the way of scoring chances. Gustavsson was a first period trainwreck and Vesa Toskala didn’t particularly stand out, mainly because he wasn’t really tested until the third (when he failed).
Anyway, the loss drops the Leafs to 3-10-5, which is still better than Carolina, at least. They’re in action next Tuesday in Ottawa.