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Leafs stars holding up their end of the deal in the playoffs and they now have a stronger supporting cast

Published September 4, 2023 at 8:22 PM
BY RYAN SMITHERAM

Every season, Auston Matthews, William Nylander, Mitch Marner and John Tavares are always at the forefront of criticism for not producing when the games matter most - in the playoffs. However, over the past 5 postseasons, those four have carried more of the offensive load for the Leafs than any other team's star players. Are there critical moments when they were needed but failed to produce? Absolutely. But that comes down to their opponents knowing that the Leafs' top guys are the only players they had to be concerned about because of the lack of secondary scoring the Leafs have gotten.

The Leafs Nation's Michael Mazzei pointed out on Monday that the Leafs' top dogs have accounted for 69.4% of all Leaf playoff goals over the past five post seasons, which is well above the league average for the top four forwards from the past five Stanley Cup winners, which was 48.8%.

Over the last five post-seasons, Matthews, Marner and Nylander have produced at almost a point-per-game pace, while Tavares, due to his injury against the Habs, has still been able to produce at a reasonable pace.

Matthews: 32p, 37games
Nylander: 32p, 37 games
Marner: 34p, 37 games
Tavares: 22p, 32 games


Be prepared for a huge change this season, as the team's core forwards are now surrounded with some solid secondary scoring talent. Thanks to the additions of Tyler Bertuzzi and Max Domi, the Buds should be in a much better position to produce offense from elsewhere in the lineup this season.

Last postseason, Bertuzzi and Domi combined for 23 points in 26 games. The breakdown is as follows:

Bertuzzi: 10p, 7 games
Domi: 13p, 19 games

If the Leafs can get more production from their secondary forwards in the post-season, it will force teams to have to consider the other players on the roster as well, which could allow the team to create more offense at more critical times in series.

POLL
September 4   |   400 answers
Leafs stars holding up their end of the deal in the playoffs and they now have a stronger supporting cast

What is the Leafs' biggest problem in the playoffs?

The core 410626.5 %
The supporting cast10125.3 %
The goaltending266.5 %
The defense16741.8 %
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