The Leafs lost 6-3 to the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night. The Leafs own a record of 4-6-1 in their last 11 games and have failed to string together two consecutive wins since February 1st. Fortunately for the buds, the Florida Panthers also lost on Saturday night so they were able to hang onto the 3rd and final playoff spot in the Atlantic division.

Leafs Lose To Emergency Backup Goalie

About 3 minutes into the game, Leafs’ winger Zach Hyman shoved Hurricanes defenseman Jaccob Slavin into starting goalie James Reimer. Reimer stayed in goal for another 3 minutes before leaving with a lower-body injury. Fast forward to the 2nd period and Leafs’ forward Kyle Clifford runs over Hurricanes’ backup goalie Petr Mrazek who stayed down for a few moments before leaving the game with an upper-body injury. Since both Hurricanes’ goaltenders were unable to resume play, Carolina was forced to put 42-year-old David Ayres in net who works as a Zamboni driver. Ayres had a rocky start as he allowed 2 goals on the first 2 shots he faced from John Tavares and Pierre Engvall respectively. However, Ayres  eventually settled in and stopped the final 8 shots he faced to pick up his first NHL victory in his first NHL game.

Andersen Has Yet Another Miserable Start

Leafs’ goaltender Frederik Andersen allowed 6 goals on 47 shots against the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night. It is the 3rd time in the past 2 months that Andersen has allowed 6 goals or more in a game. The 30-year-old veteran goalie has allowed 5 goals or more in 3 of his last 4 starts. Andersen is on pace to put up the worst statistical numbers of his career as he currently owns a 2.98 goals against average and a .906 save percentage.

Leafs’ Trade Bait Impress Before Deadline

In the Leafs’ final game before the NHL trade deadline, all three of Alex Kerfoot, Kasperi Kapanen and Tyson Barrie had excellent performances. Ironically enough, these three names have easily been the most talked about when it comes to trade rumours. Kapanen and Barrie were the only Leafs’ players to have a multi-point game as they each picked up a pair of assists against the Hurricanes. Kapanen now has 7 multi-point games this season and Barrie has 10 multi-point games. Kerfoot scored the opening goal of the game to give the Leafs their only lead in this game. For Kerfoot, that is his 9th goal of the season and his first goal in the last 14 games.

The task will not get any easier for the Leafs as they will take on the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night. Although the Lightning have lost their last two games, they still remain the hottest team in the NHL over the last two months. Tampa has won 23 of their last 28 games and are chasing the Bruins for top seed in the Atlantic division. The Leafs will look to hand the Lightning their 3rd consecutive loss and rebound from their embarrassing loss to a Zamboni driver.