Here are five takeaways from the Maple Leafs’ 1-0 loss to the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night at Xcel Energy Center:
Video replay, like puck luck, is not the Leafs’ friend right now.
For the second consecutive game, the Leafs had a momentum-changing goal disallowed after video review. Wednesday against Winnipeg, Nick Spaling appeared to have scored to cut the Jets’ lead to 4-2, but after the officials looked at the video, they determined there was goalie interference on the play. Thursday, Toronto’s Peter Holland scored late in the third period to tie the score at a goal apiece, but the Wild challenged the play and the referees ruled the Buds were offside. Video review is a subjective process that’s never going to please everyone, but for the past two games, it’s definitely not been pleasing to Leafs fans.
Reimer showing no rust.
In his first game since Nov. 23, goalie James Reimer looked as if he hadn’t missed a beat in recovering from a lower body injury. Reimer stopped 27 of 28 Wild shots and although he didn’t get the victory, his teammates and fans can rest assured his resilience and focus remains intact.
You can’t win when you don’t score.
This seems pretty self-evident, right? Even without Holland’s disallowed goal, the Leafs didn’t generate an abundance of high-quality scoring opportunities against Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk, who posted his fourth shutout of the season by stopping all 28 of Toronto’s shots. The absence of injured winger Joffrey Lupul is notable, and head coach Mike Babcock needs someone to step up in Lupul’s absence with some quality play on the cycle.
Komarov is still a hellcat out there.
Leo Komarov’s stats: A team-best five shots on net. A team-best three hits. A pair of blocked shots. Two-and-a-half minutes of power play time, and 2:22 on the penalty kill. Komarov is one of Babcock’s go-to players for good reason. He’s consistently engaged and relentless.
Rielly racking up the minutes.
Defenseman Morgan Rielly logged 24:32 of ice time Thursday, his biggest total in that category since he amassed 25:49 against Carolina on Nov. 20. The 21-year-old is averaging nearly 22 minutes per game, but Babcock clearly isn’t afraid to lean on him when the situation calls for it.