Leafs Vs. Calgary Game Recap: Monday, October 29th, 2018

By: Vanessa Serrao

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

The Toronto Maple Leafs came into this game against Calgary without their superstar Auston Matthews. But the show had to go on as the Leafs have played without Matthews before in games last season, and were able to hold up their own. So were they be able to play with finesse and tenacity without Matthews? Well for starters, Frederick Andersen had his eyes on the prize by making some good saves in the first period. He stood tall in the first period. Although the Calgary Flames came into this game with a 5-5-1 record, the Leafs needed to watch out for Sean Monahan and Johnny Gaudreau. Johnny hockey with 14 points and Monahan with 10 points. The Calgary Flames were the better team in the first period but couldn’t put the puck to the net. The Flames were aggressive with their forecheck and the Leafs seemed a little overwhelmed and disinterested in the first period. The Leafs were also outshot in the first period, 12-4, but the first period ended with a score of 0-0.

 Leafs started off the second period sloppy, not able to score on a power play that ended in the first period and carried on into the second period. At the start of a period you sometimes don’t handle the puck as well and that was the issue for the Leafs. Having Kapanen on the first line was definitely a positive and Kapanen made a nice dangle to try and get the Leafs on the board, but he fell just a little short. Kapanen is at a career high for 10 points at this point in the season. He is playing with confidence and it is being showcased. Andersen continued to play smart in the second period making good saves. The Leafs definitely improved with scoring opportunities and improved their overall competitive level but were unable to score and the second period ended in a score of 0-0. The Leafs came close but no cigar right at the end of the period. Both teams were still looking for their first goal.

 The Leafs had the mindset to intensify the third period like the game against the Jets where they scored 2 goals in 26 seconds in the third period of that game. Andersen continued to be impressive with his saves in the third period to help the Leafs stay in the game. The Leafs continued to have a strange night with controlling the puck as they had some mishaps in the third period. And since this was the case, this gave Calgary the chance to capitalize. Hyman made his second mistake in the game and put the Flames on the powerplay where Monahan scored on the powerplay. As mentioned, Monahan is a player to watch out for. Things continued to get ugly for the Leafs as Calgary scored shortly after again with an assist by Monahan and a goal by Lindholm. Calgary scored two goals in 55 seconds. The 2-0 deficit only brought the Leafs to desperation and heightened up the game for the Leafs. It appeared as though how the Leafs played against the Jets that is how Calgary was playing against the Leafs.

 The Leafs continued to play sloppy in the third period, with the Leafs being outshot 30-16 with just under 10 mins left in the game. It was one of those frustrating nights for the Leafs, but they couldn’t call it quits just yet. Babcock knew this was game one without Matthews so the Leafs knew it was gonna be a tough game. The rest of the period was about shut down for the Leafs as they didn’t have too many opportunities in terms of scoring. The Leafs were granted with a power play hoping to get something going with a 0/5 in power plays in the last 10 games. The Leafs were then granted a 5 on 3, which was lucky as they were in desperate need of a goal. And when you are granted luck you take advantage of a power play as the Kadri scored a beauty to make it a 2-1 game. Now that the Leafs were still alive in the game it brought them some energy that was much needed. It was now do or die with under 2 minutes in the game left. Unusual things continued to happen in the game as the Leafs thought they had scored to tie it up but the puck wasn’t actually in the net. The Leafs continued to rush but the Flames scored on an empty Leafs net to seal the deal and take the game 3-1.

Thank you for reading. I am Vanessa Serrao, sports writer for Barn Burner and author of Anxiety Girl that is available on Amazon.