If one sure thing can be taken away from the Toronto Maple Leafs current disastrous campaign, it's that the Blue and White are atrociously bad at backing up their talk.
After likely spending the entire Olympic Break doing everything that they could to erase the first 61 games from their memory, the Leafs came out tonight and put on a pathetic, disheartening, lackluster (insert synonyms here) performance, that resembled a child's game of keep away. Not surprisingly, the Leafs weren't doing much of the keeping, as the 5-1 drubbing at the hands of the Carolina Hurricanes gave a whole new meaning to boredom.
For the past week, Leafs players have been 'itching' to get back at it. What for? Nobody knows. Says Lee Stempniak, "everyone's anxious to get going." Unfortunately for Lee, it's Leafs fans that are ready for him to 'get going' on the next flight out of Toronto come the Trade Deadline tomorrow. "Hopefully we can get on a roll," added Stempniak.
Wayne Primeau sounded equally optimistic about the team's time off, as he explained, "the coaches have been doing a good job at keeping us prepared and busy."
These two players, unfortunately, are not the only Leafs who are slick with their tongues, but not with their sticks when it matters most. Ever since the Leafs' playoff-missing '07-'08 season, when Paul Maurice made the astonishing claim that his Maple Leafs squad was the most impressive team he'd ever coached, the Leafs have become a team of unfulfilled promises.
Even Brian Burke's most attainable promise of, "proper levels of pugnacity, testosterone, truculence, and belligerence," wasn't able to pull through tonight, with the lone Maple Leafs penalty being a two minute minor for delay of game.
As for that entertaining brand of hockey that Burke promised? All you had to do was listen to the boo-birds at tonight's game for the answer to that question.
At the beginning of the season Burke claimed that it was his team's goal to make the playoffs. Optimism and aspirations are nice, but for once would this team deliver?