BOSTON — Eleven games in and already enough is enough.The Maple Leafs’ middling start to the 2019-20 regular season continued on Tuesday night at TD Garden, where apparently it’s not just the month of April that leaves the Leafs wanting a hell of a lot more.Yes, it’s a Leafs group that is missing captain John Tavares and key performers Zach Hyman and Travis Dermott because of injuries, and yes, it’s a group that has several new players who are trying to realize how they best fit.No excuses, though, for a club that likes to think its depth can help carry it through, not that any were being made after a 4-2 loss to the Boston Bruins dropped the Leafs to a mediocre record of 5-4-2.The idea that inconsistencies are a result of a team attempting to find itself doesn’t wash with star centre Auston Matthews.Story continues belowThis advertisement has not loaded yet,but your article continues below.“I think it’s just not good enough,” Matthews said. “We need to better. I think it comes from the leadership group.“I need to be better. All of us need to be better. I think we need to look each other in the eye and hold each other accountable and put this game aside, take a couple steps forward and be better for one another.”And this from forward Alex Kerfoot: “We talked about putting a full 60 together, and I don’t think we’re there yet.”Leafs coach Mike Babcock again had Mitch Marner on Matthews’ right side, with Andreas Johnsson on the left. The Matthews-Marner combo didn’t inspire and didn’t generate a bushel of scoring chances against the line of Patrice Bergeron between Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak, a trio that has no equals in hockey.The Leafs, losers in overtime at home against the Columbus Blue Jackets the night before, and Bruins were tied 2-2 heading into the third period. That was a bit of a mirage, however, as Toronto hadn’t displayed a determination similar to that of the home side.With goals by Brett Ritchie and ex-Leaf Par Lindholm in the final 20 minutes, the Bruins were able to put away a Leafs team that wound up losing for the third time in four games.Babcock saw the outcome a little differently than Matthews.“I liked our effort, I liked our preparation, I liked the plan the guys had and the way we went about it,” said Babcock, whose team was outshot 39-30. “In the end the game was right there in the third period, which is what you want in the balance, but we were unable to get it done.”How about that Matthews line?“They’re playing against the good (Bergeron) line, so which part is the good line and which part is them?” Babcock said. “We’ve talked about this a number of times over the years, who should play with who. But in the end, your dominant players have to be dominant players for you.” 18 Bruins’ Brett Ritchie raises his arms after his goal during the third period against the Maple Leafs on Tuesday night at TD Garden in Boston. On the ice looking up is Bruins’Jake DeBrusk, as Leafs’ Kasperi Kapanen looks on. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS) LOOSE LEAFSGood on veteran defenceman Jake Muzzin for being blunt following the overtime loss to Columbus on Monday when he said that “we’re going to play better defensively, no matter who’s in net.” Babcock stressed when the alternate captains (Matthews, Marner and Rielly) were announced that the Leafs would have several leaders who don’t wear a letter. Muzzin is at the top of that list. “He’s a guy on our team who has won (the Stanley Cup),” Babcock said. “And until you have won, you don’t necessarily know. He’s a guy who knows, so he has a voice in the room, which is real important for our young guys and for our team. He is a good man.” … Babcock has 696 career wins in the NHL, and he soon will become the eighth man to record 700. Winnipeg Jets coach Paul Maurice on Sunday won his 700th game, requiring 1,539 games to do so. Babcock coached his 1,289th game on Tuesday … Babcock was asked before the game about the defence pair of Morgan Rielly and Cody Ceci, but didn’t answer directly, instead serving this up: “You know what I like about Ceci? In the last three games, I never see him. Just never see him. He’s never in anything. To me, you’re doing your job. You’re never in anything. No chances against, you’re not an issue. You’re just playing good. That to me is a real good player. Him and (Justin Holl), if you go through our D this last little while, they’re a nothing. That’s a positive sign.” COURT CONSIDERATIONSThe charge of disorderly conduct brought against Matthews in July continues to wind its way through the court system in Scottsdale, Ariz.A trial readiness conference — when the lawyers for both sides discuss whether they are ready for trial — has been set for Nov. 27, following a case management conference on Tuesday.In the early morning hours of May 26 at his condo complex in Scottsdale, Matthews is alleged to have pulled down his pants, but not his underwear, in view of a female security guard. This after Matthews and some friends allegedly tried to get into the security guard’s car while she was in it.There was embarrassment for Matthews and the Leafs when the charge came to light in September, as no one in Matthews’ camp had advised Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas of the proceedings.While there was speculation the charge cost Matthews the Leafs captaincy, the club insisted after naming Tavares captain on Oct. 2 that Tavares had always been the choice.RASK’S MILESTONEOriginally drafted by the Leafs 21st overall in 2005, Rask played in his 500th game in the NHL, all with Boston.The Leafs’ trading of Rask before he played a game with the club is one of the worst in team history.Rask was sent to the Bruins in June 2006 for goaltender Andrew Raycroft, as John Ferguson Jr., the Leafs’ general manager at the time, figured Justin Pogge would be Toronto’s goalie of the future (or, if you accept another theory, that the Bruins had a choice of Rask or Pogge and chose Rask. Either way, the bottom line is the Leafs got burned, and badly).Drafted in 2004, Pogge played just seven games for the Leafs, all in 2008-09; Raycroft spent just two seasons with Toronto, winning 39 games in 91 appearances.Of the goaltenders selected by the Leafs since the first NHL draft in 1963, only two — Felix Potvin (635 games) and Ken Wregget (575 games) — went on to play more than Rask.Furthermore, just one goalie in Leafs history has played more than 500 games with the team. That would be Turk Broda, who played in 629 games. Second is Johnny Bower, who played in 472 games with the Leafs.There’s no way to know how Rask’s career would have unfolded had he remained in Toronto, but the pain in Leafs Nation remains fresh whenever the Rask/Pogge topic is raised.The Bruins didn’t rush Rask, letting him develop in two seasons with Providence before he became a regular in 2009-10.Rask backed up Tim Thomas on the Bruins’ Stanley Cup team in 2011, eventually taking over as Boston’s No. 1 goalie in the lockout-shortened season of 2012-13.Going into Tuesday night, Rask had been masterful in his career against the Leafs, compiling a record of 17-7-2 with a .925 save percentage in 29 regular-season games; in each of the Bruins’ three first-round series wins against Toronto dating to 2013, Rask has been in the Boston net.“You don’t pay attention to how many games you’ve played total until you’re reaching some kind of milestone,” the 32-year-old Rask said this week. “Then you start looking back and think, ‘Holy crap, 500, and it has been 11 years or whatever.’“Time flies, definitely. Just grateful I’ve been part of this team for so long, and still in it.”Said fellow Finn Kapanen: “Congratulations to him. It’s fun to see someone reach that mark. He has earned it.” Comments Share your thoughts Maple Leafs’ Trevor Moore (left) chases Bruins’ Charlie McAvoy during the first period on Tuesday night at TD Garden in Boston. (GETTY IMAGES) GAME ONThe Leafs sandwiched a Marchand goal in the second period to go into the intermission tied. Kasperi Kapanen scored on a one-timer on a pass from Kerfoot at 4:23, and at 12:54 during a Toronto power play, Kerfoot slammed a Kapanen pass behind Tuukka Rask. On the Kerfoot goal, a smart cross-ice feed from William Nylander to Kapanen got the play started … Marchand scored at 6:09 after a miscue involving goalie Michael Hutchinson and Tyson Barrie, as the defenceman didn’t pick up the puck when Hutchinson tried to give him a short pass … The Leafs went down 1-0 for the eighth time … Placing blame for the loss on backup Hutchinson would be wrong. “He made some unbelievable saves, he did everything we needed of him to keep us in it,” Kerfoot said. “They had a lot of really quality looks.” … After a goal by Pastrnak was not allowed as Bergeron was deemed to be offside, the Bruins did get a 1-0 lead. It was provided by Pastrnak on a power play at 17:55 of the first when he went between his own legs to squeak the puck past Hutchinson. As the puck dribbled over the line, Pastrnak pointed at the net, signalling his 10th goal of the season … Jason Spezza was a healthy scratch, with Nic Petan inserted into the lineup. On the blue line, Kevin Gravel played in place of Martin Marincin … Matthews on the Leafs’ four penalties: “I think it has just been the same thing over and over for us. We haven’t been disciplined. We’re taking ourselves out of the game with lots of penalties and I think that’s costing us. It’s taking us out of our rhythm. I think that’s on us.” KOSHAN’S TOP FIVE TAKEAWAYSD is for discipline: The Leafs talked before the game about being more disciplined, and then gave the lethal Bruins power play four chances, though none in the third period. Boston managed to score one power-play goal.Perimeter play: While the Leafs finished with 30 shots on Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask, don’t read too much into it. In statistics compiled by Natural Stat Trick, the Leafs had just four high-danger scoring chances, while the Bruins had 12.Instant disadvantage: Other than William Nylander, who won five of eight draws he took, the Leafs had trouble in the circle, winning 25 of 63 faceoffs (40%). For Boston, Patrice Bergeron was 14-10 while Charlie Coyle was 8-4.Tough night: Andreas Johnsson, whether they were deserved, had two penalties in the first period and then had a quiet night, one of two Leafs forwards to end the game with no shots on goal, along with Nick Shore.Pair of troubles: The Leafs duo of Jake Muzzin and Tyson Barrie didn’t play much against the Patrice Bergeron line — less than four minutes at five-on-five — but the Bruins trio had eight shots on goal against the [email protected] Bruins’ David Pastrnak slips the puck past Leafs goaltender Michael Hutchinson for a first-period goal on Tuesday night. (GETTY IMAGES) Bruins’ Brad Marchand (left) and Maple Leafs’ Tyson Barrie tangle during the first period on Tuesday night in Boston. (THE ASSOCIATED PRESS) Auston Matthews Boston Bruins Maple Leafs Michael Hutchinson Mike Babcock Mitch Marner
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedNAACIE registers concern over sidelining of Bauxite UnionSeptember 1, 2016In “Local News”BREAKING: Fired Bauxite Workers reinstated, Berbice River to be clearedMarch 20, 2019In “latest news”Government threatens to shut down RUSALMarch 2, 2019In “latest news” RUSAL and the Guyana Bauxite and General Workers Union (GB&GWU) will meet on Friday to discuss several issues including the sacking of scores of workers who allegedly protested after a one percent increase in wages were announced.The union has been calling for the rehiring of these workers but RUSAL has made it clear that they would have breached their contract of employment. Nevertheless, the Russian bauxite company has finally agreed to recognize the GB&GWU as the body that will represent the workers going forward.This is according to President of the GBGWU, Lincoln Lewis, who spoke with the media moments after the first meeting with RUSAL, the Union and the Department of Labour.