Thursday, April 3, 2008

It Had To Be The Leafs

It’s unfortunate, but the Senators have to face old demons when they go into the den of iniquity in Toronto tonight with the playoffs on the line.

In the past, the likelihood of the Senators winning an important game against Toronto were akin to Nickelback writing a good song. It just doesn’t happen.

And make no mistake about it. Every hockey writer in the world is licking their greasy press box buffet chops in anticipation of Ottawa making another no-show against the Leafs in what is basically a playoff game in everything but name. It’s a seven game series wrapped into 60 minutes.

That’s how important it is for Ottawa to beat Toronto tonight. Not for the chance of going to the playoffs. But to keep old stigma’s from resurfacing and another summer of ridicule at the hands of the Toronto based hockey media who will be all too happy to point out that the Senators are “chokers” and incapable of standing up to the “character” of the Leafs. And they will be right if the Senators don’t win this game.

Yes, the playoffs are the most important task right now, but do you really think the Senators will survive a beating at the hands of the Leafs tonight?

This is the first must-win game since game 5 of last years Stanley Cup playoffs.

How the hell did the Senators manage to screw up so badly that it had to come against the Leafs?

Of all the teams, why the Leafs?

This will be a good test for Martin Gerber. If he can't excel in this type of game, he's never going to be the answer.

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