Perhaps the Toronto Maple Leafs should play all of their game outdoors.
After beating the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 in the Winter Classic at Michigan Stadium, the Leafs lost their next four games by a combined 21-7 score.
Things got so bad that a 3-2 loss at Washington was a cause for celebration.
“This might be one of the better games we’ve played in a month. We showed desperation. We showed that we care,” coach Randy Carlyle told reporters after that game. “We’ve been begging, pleading, kicking, kissing, whatever we can do to try and find a way to play with some confidence. It seems like we’ve squeezed our sticks here. It’s mind boggling.”
The Leafs are terrible defensively, allowing the most shots in the NHL. Earlier this season great goaltending saved them, but more recently their play in the nets has been pedestrian.
Goaltenders Jonathan Bernier and James Reimer combined for a modest .900 save percentage during a span of 23 games, starting with a 6-0 loss to Columbus in November.