TORONTO - Guys talk about how Maple Leafs coach Randy Carlyle has lightened up (especially with the media) during his time in Toronto and how much more relaxed he is compared to his time behind the bench in Anaheim.
Perhaps he should go back to being a jerk.
Why not? Something has gone seriously amiss with the Leafs and much of the blame has to fall on Carlyle’s shoulders. Perhaps he needs to get snarly again.
Here’s the situation: It’s one thing missing the playoffs because you’re a bad team. But missing the playoffs with a team that qualified for the post-season the year before with basically the same roster of relatively young players is hard to understand. This year’s Leafs team was supposed to be better than last year’s. But the Leafs have regressed. Badly.
Look over the Leafs lineup and point out players who have improved this season from last. Found any? It’s generally the opposite. Look at how this team plays in their own end and in the neutral zone.