Toronto held on to a 2-1 lead going into the third to defeat the St. Louis Blues tonight, the winner coming from Alex Steen late in the second period. Alex Ponikarovsky had the the first goal for the Leafs on the power play at 15:55 of the first period. Toronto, which entered ninth in the Eastern Conference, is 11-0-2 when getting a goal from Ponikarovsky, and 16-9-3 on the road. They have won five straight games and have also won eight of their last nine on the road. Andrew Raycroft stopped 19 of the 20 shots he faced in the game, putting in yet another solid performance to keep the Leafs sniffing at 8th place in the Eastern Conference.
Surprisingly, Toronto was outshot 20-16, something that almost never happens. The Bing Man predicts good things for the Buds if they can continue to play such disciplined hockey and if Raycroft continues to be the goalie we all thought he could be upon his arrival in Toronto. Sadly, Carolina also won tonight and thus will remain one point up on Toronto for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East.
I am stoked for the next game when the Leafs take on the top team in the league, the Nashville Predators, on Thursday night in Nashville. Toronto often plays very well against the tough teams (they were the first to beat Buffalo earlier in the season) and so it should be a good game.