Oct 25, 2009

The "Hockey" Gods must be crazy!

The "Hockey Gods", who are they and why do they hate the Leafs?

A common phrase that everyone has likely heard from time to time is that, "The hockey gods will find a way to balance things out". This comment is usually bandied about when a normally good team starts off slow, or a normally bad team starts of really well. But what happens when a habitually "bad" team makes all the right moves on paper to be a better team, but for some reason can't get over the hump to success. Where do the hockey gods fit into this scenario?

Mike Komisarek, making a difference for all the wrong reasons.

The Toronto Maple Leafs are playing some really bad hockey to start the 2009/2010 season. Even when they play well enough to potentially win, something occurs that enables them to lose convincingly. Take for instance Saturday October 24, and the game against Vancouver. In the 3rd period, a period in which for the first time the Leafs appeared able to dominate a game, they were handed the opportunity to change the tide of the game when for several seconds a couple of Leafs were staring at a wide-open Vancouver net. The only thing between them and a tied game was a bouncing puck, that miraculously jumped over their sticks and laid flat for the Canucks defense to clear out. Now, any player will tell you that some games you get the bounces and other games you don't, but what is happening that the Leafs aren't getting any bounces at all? Even when a break is given, the numerous posts hit on the empty net for example, the end was never in doubt as the puck jumped right onto a Canuck stick at an opportune time and it was buried to end the misery for the Leafs. Is this the work of those infamous "Hockey Gods"?

Francois Beauchemin, uncharacteristic give-aways and bad decisions have specifically lead to goals against.

The players the Maple Leafs have on roster should be better than what they are. The acquired free agents were all coveted by other teams and were difference makers on their previous clubs. (That description pretty much describes, Francois Beauchemin and Mike Komisarek.) As a Leaf, the performance given by these players while still being difference makers, are making a difference for all the wrong reasons. Untimely and uncharacteristic give-aways and bad decisions have specifically lead to goals against them. Last season on their respective squads those players were regularly making big plays to bail out their hockey team, why not now?

Are the Leafs players waiting for Phil Kessel to make an appearance as the saviour and completely forgotten how to play until he arrives? The team cannot be as bad as the current record indicates. I believe it is safe to suggest that the presence of an omnipotent "Hockey God" is a mere fallacy. If the players all play well, minimize mistakes, take more shots, practice what is being preached to them, then it should work out that the teams fortunes will eventually turn for the better.

But, in the off chance that some ever-present Hockey deity does exist, then I think the Leafs should consider making a sacrifice to the Gods. May I suggest Jason Blake to start!

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