|This probably happened|
Once again, for the seventh straight season, the Toronto Maple Leafs have failed to make the post-season, being mathematically eliminated tonight with a 3-0 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes. It wasn't bad enough that they lost, let alone show little-to-no effort.....but the mediocre play of Jonas Gustavsson further proved that this team needs to go out and get an established goaltender for next season.
In the seven seasons it has been since they made the playoffs, this might be the year that was most painful to watch. At no point during this drought have the Leafs been so close to a chance at hockey in May since the end of the 2006-07 season, when it was a Sunday afternoon tilt between the New Jersey Devils and the New York Islanders that would determine whether or not the Blue and White would make the playoffs.
How awful was this. I was at my Grandmothers for Sunday dinner, and me and my Dad sneaked out to the living room to catch the end of the game. When John Madden tied it up, we both jumped in the air and screamed hysterically for about 30 seconds. It was probably the most Father-Son thing we've done since we both hid our faces when we watched the end of Field of Dreams.
Back to that game...the Islanders ended up winning in a shootout, and the Leafs missed the playoffs by a point. One freakin' point. And since then, they haven't come close to sniffing a playoff spot.
But this year was different. They were becoming more and more consistent, the goaltending was actually decent, and the team was getting goals. But around the start of February, something horribly awful and a terrible terrible curse struck this franchise. Everything they worked for went to shit, goalies became shit, players were playing shit, coaches were coaching shitty, and the management was shit.
You said it, Senator Clay Davis!
And now it's almost comical. I tried to use logic in this mega-rant that went viral, but now have had a week to simmer in the horrid display of hockey that I've been subject to watch (they have lost two of three since I wrote it), and am beginning to evolve into the masses of fans who are sick of it.
Last year, I wrote a piece on the Leafs getting mathematically eliminated following a loss to the Washington Capitals, and ranted about blah blah blah and yak yak yak and yada yada yada. If you want to learn how I feel about the current-day squad, just read the link at the top of the paragraph and adapt to the 2011-12 version of the team.
Sigh, there's always next year...