Shootout guns full of blanks

MIKE ZEISBERGER

, Last Updated: 7:18 AM ET

If Maple Leafs management pleads for a ban on shootouts during the next board of governors meetings, it is easy to see why.

The Leafs are just 7-16 in the history of shootouts, including 0-2 this season after last night's 3-2 loss to the New York Rangers.

"We've left two points on the table already," said captain Mats Sundin, who was thwarted in his effort against Rangers goalie Stephen Valiquette.

Had they won just one more shootout a year ago, they would have reached the post-season instead of being on the outside looking in, Sundin said.

"We finished one point out of the playoffs last year so each one of these is so important. What do you say? Maybe we have to work on it more in practice."

That's fine with coach Paul Maurice.

"Hey, if the players want it, then we'll do it on a daily basis," Maurice said.

Why does his team have so many problems in the sudden-death, penalty-shot format?

"You can't get traffic in front of the net," he quipped.

No one has struggled more in shootouts than goalie Vesa Toskala, who claimed he has never won one in his career.

"I watched tape of shooters last year and it didn't work so I stopped," he said. "I just have to keep trying."


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