BOSTON -- Jean-Sebastien Aubin knew he was about 10 minutes away from a brighter employment picture.
But the Leafs' backup goaltender caught the same third-period malaise that has dogged Andrew Raycroft. Aubin gave up three late goals last night, after it seemed he'd come up with the same magic that endeared him to the club last spring.
It's likely coach Paul Maurice returns to Raycroft tomorrow in Detroit to prevent the club's skid from reaching seven games.
"It's just depressing the way our games end," Aubin said. "We can't seem to do anything about it, even if we're all trying the same way. We get nervous."
An uncharacteristic rebound to Wayne Primeau with 5:53 to play sealed the Leafs' fate.
"It's just depressing the way our games end ... We get nervous."
"Me and Bryan McCabe (the only defenceman in the vicinity) talked about it after. The puck bounced right before it hit my pad and took off like a grenade. Look at all the rebounds I give up, they're right around the net (and safe to smother).
"But we can't cry about it. We have to play even harder and smarter. I'll just take the positives out of it and hopefully I get a game soon."
Maurice insists he still is in Raycroft's corner, but felt he could not keep a goalie with just one regulation loss in 16 games before last night on the bench any longer.
But other Leafs have to start pulling their weight and captain Mats Sundin knew his leadership role off the ice is under closer scrutiny in these troubled times. The Leafs have not won since he returned from a three-week elbow injury.
"There's always a fine balance between making sure everyone understands the urgency to win and at the same time, have a loose group," Sundin said. "But I think we have enough veterans in the room to realize the situation we're in."