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Leafs Stagger In Edmonton

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
JP Lopez

December 30, 2009
Rexall Place
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
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0 0 1 1
1 1 1 3

Despite an overall decent game for Vesa Toskala, the Leafs' goaltender let the game get away early in the first, as Gilbert Brule slipped in a contested shot from a sharp angle that was mis-played by Toskala.

The Leafs just couldn't get in any kind of flow until it was too late, despite a strong presence to start off the game.

4/5 The Leafs have now lost four of their last five.
5 Shots on goal the Leafs had in the second period.
7 Games the Oilers lost prior to tonight's game
6 Phil Kessel was pointless in his last six games prior to tonight's goal.
1st Star
Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers
1 2 3 Shots Total
0-9 0-5 1-14 28 1-28
2nd Star
Patrick O'Sullivan
G A P +/- Shots
2 0 2 0 5
3rd Star
Jean-Francois Jacques
G A P +/- Shots
0 1 1 1 0
Caption This

Although many of the Leafs' shots were wide of the net, Oilers' netminder Jeff Desluariers made his presence between the pipes when it counted.

Desluariers made key saves when the Leafs starting pressing, managing to smother the puck before any Leafs players had any chance at getting any lucky ones by him. 

Despite letting three goals in a losing cause, Vesa Toskala deserves credit for keeping his team in the game, stopping 20 of 23 shots.

Neither the win or the numbers were there, but Vesa showed a great amount of determination throughout the game, and that he still belongs to share the starting goaltender spot for the team along with Jonas Gustavsson.

What sticks out is the Leafs second period shooting numbers: 5 shots on goal.

Compare that with the shots on goal they had for the third period: 14.

These numbers show that the team just wasn't there the entire game, and it's pretty difficult to win when the offence doesn't find the net.

Ron Wilson on tonight's play:

"When we let in a bad goal, we have a tough time...In the second period we didn't get anything going...We never had any real sense of urgency until the last 10 minutes of the game." 

Saturday January 2 @ Flames
  7:00 PM ET (CBC, AM640)

Game Notes:
The tough Calgary Flames team is playing a very busy week, coming off a couple of back-to-backs in the last days of 2009. The team will start 2010 with barely any rest against the Leafs.

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