TORONTO -- A few days later, the shock is starting to wear off.
No, it was not just a really bad dream. In fact, the Toronto Maple Leafs did blow a three-goal lead in the third period and a trip to the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Boston Bruins, on the verge of blowing a 3-1 series lead of their own, scored two goals in the final two minutes of Game 7 with goalie Tuukka Rask on the bench in favor of an extra skater, then secured their comeback with an overtime goal.
It was a collapse for the ages. The Maple Leafs successfully and shockingly had snatched defeat from the jaws of victory, sending a disbelieving fan base into instant mourning.
The city, which had come alive and was partying in the name of their beloved hockey team, took a collective punch to the gut. The Maple Leafs had the Bruins on the ropes and could not deliver the knockout.
Was it a successful season? Of course it was. Any time you make the playoffs after a nine-year absence, how can it be viewed as anything other than successful?