NHL Northeast: The Maple Leafs Are Hot
It's tough being a Maple Leafs fans usually. From the yearly heartbreak that surrounds the team, to the jokes that surround them. Leafs fans have endured a lot over the years. This year though, there is quite a buzz surrounding the team and rightfully so; they're one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now and are looking at making a playoff push for the first time since the 2003-2004 season.
The Leafs are winners of six of their last seven, with goalie Ben Scrivens filling in admirably for the injured James Reimer. Scrivens is coming off back to back shutouts in his last two starts and is looking to stay hot tonight against a high powered Lightning offense.
How are they getting it done you ask? Well having some offensive punch doesn't hurt. Being lead by former Flyer James vanRiemsdyk, who's been flourished since being in Toronto to the tune of 8 goals. Though it doesn't stop there. Captain Dion Phaneuf who's been hot lately has been tallying some offense(2G 4A in his last 5 games), and has given the Leafs some pressure from the blue line. A lot of the spotlight still remains on Phil Kessel. Kessel may not be putting up the goal numbers, but his point totals are right there(3G 9A 12P). Not to mention that the Leafs have someone that could be a star in the making in Nazem Kadri.
Can the Leafs make the playoffs? They certainly have the firepower to do so, and help send a city into a frenzy if they keep it up. In this shortened season, anything is possible. That's why this Leafs team is not one to look over.