With two wins in a row and points in four consecutive games, the Toronto Maple Leafs are finally earning results through 16 games of what has largely been solid, consistent play. After a tough start to the year, which saw poor puck luck and tough breaks in the defensive zone, the Leafs have been bolstered by strong goaltending from James Reimer
and tight play through all three zones.
Wins over Dallas and Nashville, as well as single points from games against Detroit and Washington have the Leafs gaining confidence in the process they've preached to this point. Maple Leafs head coach Mike Babcock is seeing those results manifest into confidence firsthand for a group looking to continue this roll.
“Obviously, when you have success and you’ve earned it you feel better about yourself. Two nights in a row we were down one in the third and found ways to win the game," said Babcock. "We’ve got points in five out of six, and so to me, you’ve got to start feeling a little better about yourself."
With that said, it wasn't all rosy for the Leafs during Thursday night's win. A slow start to the game could have sunk the Buds, who found a way to limit scoring opportunities despite not hanging on to the puck.
"I didn’t think we were as competitive early as we normally are but we got better as the game went on so that was good for us,” said Babcock.
The Leafs picked up steam as the game went along and earned the shootout victory. They will return to action on Saturday night against the Vancouver Canucks at Air Canada Centre.