Maple Leafs mauled by Panthers

Leafs defenceman Jake Gardiner (left) fights with Panthers centre Jonathan Huberdeau during the...

Leafs defenceman Jake Gardiner (left) fights with Panthers centre Jonathan Huberdeau during the second period on Tuesday night in Sunrise, Fla. (Robert Mayer/USA Today Sports)

TERRY KOSHAN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:51 AM ET

SUNRISE, FLA. - Thanks for nothing, dads.

That appeared to be the message from the Maple Leafs on Tuesday night at the BB&T Center.

With their fathers in attendance — someone get those guys some paper bags — the Leafs turned in their worst effort of the season, falling 4-1 to the Florida Panthers.

There have been other bad games in 2013-14. The 7-1 debacle in Dallas a few weeks ago comes to mind, as does the 4-0 loss in Vancouver in early November.

But those weren’t against an NHL also-ran. The Panthers, usually, are incapable of putting 30 minutes together, never mind 60.

Against the Leafs, the Panthers probably could have sent their own kids over the boards and still have won.

The Leafs were 9-1-1 in their previous 11 games, but total headscratchers like this one continue to plague this team.

David Clarkson, in his first game after missing the previous eight with an elbow injury, broke Tim Thomas’ bid for a shutout at 9:31 of the third period.


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