Sunday, October 07, 2007

This is a Real Fear of Mine

Sometimes when I watch my Leafs stumbled around the rink I start to worry that the last goal they scored will be the last goal they ever score. I get this unshakable feeling that the Leafs' tentative, unsure forecheck will never click and that their sloppy passes and weak shots will never connect in any meaningful way. Sometimes they can muster all the creativity, all the originality of a Hallmark greeting card, relying on a lackluster dump'n'chase and far too many weak passes. Watching them, I sometimes think that whichever team holds the record for most shut-outs against in one season doesn't have to worry much longer.

The bright-side, if there is one, is that when the Leafs do score - yeah it happens every now and then - it feels like they have defied some incredible odds to put the puck in the back of the net. To me, with every goal it feels as if they have accomplished so much more than I had any right to ever expect. Each Leaf goal counts extra for me, each Leaf goal is something to cherish and hold on to because who knows how long it will be before the next one will show up. The longest goalless streak in league history always feels just around the corner.

Every time a Leaf pass is intercepted in the neutral zone or another blue and white rush crashes into the opposing d-line only to be stopped in their tracks, every time an opposing goalie makes a save he has no business saving it just serves as further proof as to the futility of the Leafs' offence. The tools to put it together seem to be there, they just need to find where they lost the instruction manual.


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