The Toronto Maple Leafs entered the month of March looking like a team that was solidly in the playoffs. Toronto won their first two games of the month, but are now on a five-game losing streak heading into play on Wednesday and can’t afford another loss.
Toronto has given up three or more goals in each of those five games and while the team has gained two points because of shootout losses, the Maple Leafs are in trouble right now.
Phil Kessel is doing his part in scoring goals, so that’s not the issue. The problem has been more on the defensive end of the ice for Toronto. There are going to be some very difficult games ahead for the Maple Leafs, so the skid has to end in short order.
The Maple Leafs are in a four-way tie right now for the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, and there are too many teams with too similar of records for the team to feel safe at this point. Toronto has 19 games to get this right or risk falling out of the playoff race.
The other problem is that with how tightly bunched all the teams are. Any long losing streak could put Toronto into a position where they would need to jump over four or five teams in the last weeks of the season just to make the playoffs.
This losing game is not good for the psyche for this Toronto team, but if players like Kessel can keep the team afloat for the next games until a win arrives, maybe there will still be hope this season. The Maple Leafs are in need of an injection of winning though.