Maple Leafs demons are aging

Once again, the Toronto Maple Leafs missed Thursday a chance to win their first playoff series since the spring of 2004 and they did not run Saturday, in the occasion of the seventh game of their duel against the Tampa Bay Lightning, they will bite their fingers for a long time.

Maple Leafs demons are aging

Once again, the Toronto Maple Leafs missed Thursday a chance to win their first playoff series since the spring of 2004 and they did not run Saturday, in the occasion of the seventh game of their duel against the Tampa Bay Lightning, they will bite their fingers for a long time.

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Having collapsed 4-3 in overtime in Game 6, the Leafs suffered their ninth consecutive loss while being in position to win a series. The drought began in the memorable first-round showdown against the Boston Bruins in 2013; at the time, the Queen City team notably escaped the seventh game 5-4 in extra time after taking the 4-1 lead midway through the third period.

Also, since the arrival in the National Hockey League of star Auston Matthews, Toronto has lost its eight games where it had the opportunity to finish with its rivals. The initial round of 2021 remains fresh in people's minds: the Montreal Canadiens overcame a 3-1 deficit to eliminate their opponents, pocketing games 5 and 6 in overtime, among other things.

“What is finished belongs to the past. We cannot change that now. Everything is about the next game and there will be a goal, details. It will be necessary to compete for 60 minutes or all the time required. We have to put everything on the table and go for it, Matthews told The Athletic. We have a great chance on our ice, in a seventh game, and we should be excited about it.

Admittedly, the Leafs hope for a very different outcome from the last time they met at home for a game number 7. Against the Habs last year, they lost 3 to 1. The author of the winning net of this game, Corey Perry, now wears the uniform of the Lightning.


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