The Toronto Maple Leafs are off to a very average start and their head coach Sheldon Keefe was not shy about expressing his dissatisfaction.
The Queen City squad have won twice in four meetings so far, but have found a way to lose against the teams that took the bottom two spots in the 2021-22 National Hockey League standings. < /p>
After losing the flag 4-3 to the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Center on Wednesday, she saw the Arizona Coyotes leave Scotiabank Arena with a 4-2 win at her expense on Monday, much to the annoyance of the local crowd.
One of the common denominators of these setbacks is the absence of production from Auston Matthews, held in check by the Habs and the “Yotes”.
Moreover, the number 34 has been satisfied with only one goal so far this season. Mitch Marner does a little better with his four points in as many outings. Morgan Rielly claims the same record, but his -5 differential already raises some eyebrows.
At least John Tavares (five points) and William Nylander (three goals) look in good shape .
However, it will take everyone's contribution to bring the Leafs to a successful conclusion.
“Our top guys haven't found their rhythm,” Keefe said in the post-game conference. The difference between us and Arizona is that we have elite players. And they did not work as such, they did not make a difference. Thus, the game became tight. That's what happens when these individuals don't take matters into their own hands the way they should.”
The race to the bottom?
Keefe refuted the statement that his troop plays the same way as his rivals when they come to him with a deficit record. “I don't remember exactly where we finished [Editor's note: second in the Atlantic section], but there were quite a few clubs behind us in the standings. And I'm not sure we were bad against all of them,” he replied, according to “The Hockey News” magazine.
Toronto will try to recover in hosting the Dallas Stars on Thursday, and the opposition will be even fiercer, at least on paper. The team from Texas won all three of their matches, conceding only one goal each time.