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Three Takeaways from Maple Leafs’ 5-2 Loss to the Bruins

The Toronto Maple Leafs lost to the Boston Bruins last night 5-2. What were three takeaways from the game for Toronto?

The Toronto Maple Leafs lost their final game before the NHL’s winter recess to their rival, the Boston Bruins by a score of 5-2. The Bruins are the top-ranked team in the NHL. They showed it last night.

The loss was the third game between these Atlantic Division rivals and this time the score was indicative of the play. The first two games were each decided by a single goal. Not so much last night. The Bruins won easily.

The game had a playoff atmosphere due to the high status of the Maple Leafs and the Bruins’ history. Year after year, it seems, the Bruins have caused postseason misery for the Maple Leafs. As Maple Leafs’ head coach Sheldon Keefe noted, the Bruins are the class of the league.

They showed it last night.

Takeaway One: Ilya Samsonov Came Back to Earth

The Bruins beat Maple Leafs’ goalie Ilya Samsonov in every way they could. If he looked low, the shot went high over his glove. If he anticipated the shot going high, the score went under his glove. It was just one of those nights.

Ilya Samsonov, Maple Leafs

For Samsonov, the game marked his seventh consecutive start. He made plenty of strong saves, but he also didn’t make some saves he probably should have. For the first two periods, the game went back and forth. However, the Maple Leafs went behind in the third period and simply couldn’t catch up.

And, when he needed to, Bruins’ goalie Linus Ullmark made the stops he needed to make. He looks like a Vézina Trophy candidate to me.


Takeaway Two: Wayne Simmonds Added Some Energy to the Team

In looking for positives to say about the Maple Leafs’ game, it had to be Wayne Simmonds’ best game of the season. He looked quick enough on the ice and determined. He added energy and some pop to the team. Although the fourth line got scored on when they got caught on a too-long shift, they also carried the play to the Bruins.

Early in the third period, the Bruins increased the lead to 3-1. Seconds later, the Bruins’ scorer was “confronted” by Simmonds. That was his role, and he was inserted into the lineup for just these kinds of physical and competitive games. As coach Keefe noted, Simmonds brought energy, voice, and experience to the team.

As noted, last night was likely Simmonds’ best game of the season.

Related: Ex-Maple Leafs Colin Blackwell & His Season with the Blackhawks

Takeaway Three: Calle Jarnkrok Scored His 12th Goal of the Season

Calle Jarnkrok scored his 12th goal of the season. That score equaled the number of goals he scored all of last season. He’s been productive over the past dozen games, scoring four goals and adding four assists.

Calle Jarnkrok Signs Maple Leafs
Calle Jarnkrok Signs Maple Leafs

Jarnkrok’s goal brought the Maple Leafs close in the third period, but then the Bruins scored two quick goals to seal the game. It was either a good game for the Maple Leafs to forget or (vice versa) to recall as a bad example.

Related: Three Takeaways from Maple Leafs’ 5-1 Win Over the Capitals



  1. Ssdd

    February 1, 2023 at 11:58 pm

    Here’s my 3 takes.
    1. Samsonov gave the Leafs a Jack Campbell outing tonite, making some unbelievable saves throughout the game but gave up 4 softies that should never go in. This is the type of performance that gets the Leafs bounced in round 1.
    2. The Leafs lack the depth required to go deep in the playoffs. Dubas needs to buckle down & improve this team or he should be sent packing. I’m not optimistic he has the vision required! At the same time, I’m not sure that the mopes that run MLSE will pull the trigger & fire him, mediocrity is acceptable to the, as long as the seats are full, the Leaf merchandise is going out the door & the TV revenues keep on coming in.
    3. Engvall, Kerfoot & Holl should be dealt before the deadline!

  2. Jon Harding

    February 2, 2023 at 12:26 am

    Could the Leafs manage to take a series seven with the Bruins by adding Auston Matthews back into the mix? That’s really what we’re talking about here with 30 games to go until the playoffs – and roughly 10 until the trade deadline. Deep down inside I think I know the answer. It will be fascinating to see how Dubas, Shanahan and Keefe address this. What happened last night? Forecheck, back check, reality check, one might say. If they manage very little in terms of personnel upgrades, what will that say to the players, especially the big four stars (who are smart enough to know the truth, one would think) and fans? Buckle in everyone.

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