Vancouver beat Toronto 3-2 in a shootout as Mats Sundin scored the game-winner. Now if the story ends right there, you’ve been shafted.
Sundin is an icon in his native Sweden and his 13 years as leader of the Maple Leafs is second only to Colorado’s Joe Sakic as an active-serving captain. Sundin scored 420 of his 555 goals with Toronto and became the first Swedish player to exceed 500 goals and 1,000 points.
It was a teary-eyed Sundin who watched the video of his past heroics in Toronto, then three hours later scored the game-winner against the Leafs in a shootout.
How Toronto could not come to a financial agreement to keep Sundin is reason enough for the Leafs not to be in the playoff picture. Vancouver’s acquisition of Sundin has sparked a four-game win streak and moved the Canucks into fifth place in the Western Conference.
And now for this week:
Tuesday, Feb. 24
Anaheim at Buffalo: On Versus TV. We should see goals. Anaheim’s last four games totaled 7, 7, 7 and 12. Buffalo’s last two games were 6 and 9. OVER.
Vancouver at Montreal: The British Columbia province will be partying hard if the Canucks can sweep both Toronto and Montreal. The Canucks are hot, but the ordered sabbatical for Kovalev resulted in a regenerated Alex and a Montreal victory. CANADIENS.
Wednesday, Feb. 25
NY Rangers at Toronto: On NHL Network. The Leafs are 5-3 to the over in the last 8, mostly due to not stopping pucks. The Rangers have scored 3 goals or less in 12 of the last 13. MAPLE LEAFS.
San Jose at Detroit: The Sharks lost 6-0 at home to Detroit and then circled it on the calendar. The next meeting at Joe Louis they won 6-5. Now Detroit has this one circled. RED WINGS.
Thursday, Feb. 26
Toronto at NY Isles: Hey, the Islanders blanked New Jersey 4-0. Tough back to back for what could be the Maple Loafs. NY ISLES.
Friday, Feb. 27
Pittsburgh at Chicago: The streaking Blackhawks have won 4 of 5 and 8 of 11. How many more coaching changes does Pittsburgh think can turn its season around? BLACKHAWKS.
Saturday, Feb. 28
Washington at Boston: The B’s are 1-6 in their last 7 starting the week and 1-2 against Washington. Time for goalie Tim Thomas to make a statement. BRUINS.
Sunday, March 1
Philadelphia at New Jersey: We may just see Martin Brodeau back in goal for Jersey. DEVILS.