Thursday, October 29, 2009

Stars beat Leafs in OT to Keep 'Em in the Cellar

The Dallas Stars got some late-game heroics from one of Bruins fandom's villains when Mike Ribeiro scored with less than 3 minutes left in regulation to pull his team even. The Stars then got an overtime goal from James Neal to grab a 4-3 victory and drop Toronto to 1-7-2 in their first 10 games.

Jonas Gustavsson was in net for the Leafs and posted an .889 save percentage- not the kind of numbers that are going to keep Toronto winning a lot of games this year. He's been OK (better than Vesa Toskala, which is kind of like saying that Josh Johnson played a little better than Byron Leftwich in Tampa), but mediocre goaltending isn't going to get it done for a team that has a below-average forward group and whose high-priced defense has struggled in the early going.

Oh, and the NY Islanders put a point of distance between themselves and the Leafs with a win over their cross-town rivals, the Rangers, last night. The Wild and Panthers, who very well could vie for the dubious honor of worst record when all is said and done this season, lost to the Predators and Senators respectively. Both are ahead of Toronto in the standings, but not by much.

Although the Leafs lost, they did post points in consecutive road games, which gives their fans a reason for small hope...but not much. This is still a bad team, and even with Phil Kessel's imminent arrival, without a premier player in Marc Savard's class to get him the puck, I don't know how much offense he'll generate with that moribund group up front.

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