Blue and White ... and red light

MIKE ZEISBERGER -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 8:54 AM ET

BUFFALO -- The NHL's new Red Light District can be found anywhere in the area of the Maple Leaf goal crease these days.

Only once in the first seven games of the season have the Leafs held an opponent under three goals in a game, that coming in an 8-1 win over the New York Islanders on Thursday.

For a team that stressed shaving off its goals-against total from one season ago, it is very much in danger of doing the exact opposite.

The Leafs have allowed 29 goals thus far, an average of more than four per outing. Nineteen of those have come in the past four games.

Keeping those numbers in mind: Was giving up five goals in the last 24 minutes, 57 seconds of play last night really so much of a shock?

"We gave up three leads which you can't do," goalie Andrew Raycroft said after the Leafs' 5-4 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres. "But at least we got a point, which is more than we did in the same game last year."

Raycroft was referring to a visit to Buffalo last March 23, in which Toronto surrendered a 4-1 lead in the third period en route to a similar 5-4 loss.

While Raycroft might view the glass as being half full, he might lose his optimistic stance if he and fellow goalie Vesa Toskala keep getting pelted with rubber.

The Maple Leafs have given up 94 shots in the past two games, an inexcusable total for a team with alleged playoff aspirations.


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