Leafs surpassed by Pastrnak, Bruins:
Leafs forward Andreas Johnsson was the most recent goat after taking two penalties in a 52-second stretch against Boston, consisting of one that caused the Bruins' opening objective.
"No one wishes to take charges," said winger Mitch Marner, who like Matthews is now one of the team's indisputable leaders, especially with captain John Tavares out a minimum of another week with a broken finger. "No one indicates to take penalties. As a group we've got watch our sticks."
Asked what can be done to stop deluge of needless offenses, Toronto head coach Mike Babcock had a little enjoyable with press reporters, imitating a player attempting to get rid of an opponent.
"Put your stick on a puck," he said with a smile. "I had not thought of informing them."
Babcock is likewise searching for a better all-around defensive effort from a group that's balancing 3.45 objectives versus, great for 25th total heading into Thursday's action.
"You take a look at the men across from you and you've got to out-will him," said the coach.
Trigger for concern
In a league as tight as the NHL, a slump of any kind is frequently cause for issue.
And in a hyper-sensitive market like Toronto, it can feel like a five-alarm blaze.
"We're trying to improve," stated defenceman Jake Muzzin, in his very first complete season with the Leafs. "We're having some talks, however let's not frickin' go insane here."
And regardless of the uncomfortable start where Toronto has quit the first goal in 8 of its 11 games, there's a lot of reason for optimism when looking at the underlying numbers.
'We know we have to play better'
The Leafs owns the league's fifth-best shot differential at even strength (52.9 per cent) and the 26th-best save portion at 5 on 5 (.906)-- which suggests the goaltending hasn't depended on its normal standards-- while the power play ranks 8th.
"We've got 71 video games to go," centre Alexander Kerfoot stated. "The sun's still going to turn up tomorrow, but we understand we need to play better.
"That's pretty clear."
Toronto has currently played 2 back-to-backs-- a third is on deck Friday and Saturday when the Leafs host San Jose before visiting Montreal-- and will have dressed for gruelling 13 video games in 25 nights as soon as the final buzzer sounds versus the Canadiens.
"That's all reasons. The bottom line is we've got games," said Babcock, whose team play a league-leading eighth time in your home Friday. "We can be better and we need to be better, individually and jointly."
Matthews challenged himself and his group to do simply that following Tuesday's loss.
That tune hadn't altered after some time away to show.
"You're annoyed," he stated. "We're still trying to fit together as a group and come together.
"But when we look around and take a look at the men that we have, I believe we anticipate more out of each other."