Leafs living through a nightmare season

first_imgNelson has lost five straight and 12 of 14 games dating back to October 31.In other words, November was a nightmare of the worst kind.And December hasn’t started out much better with four consecutive defeats.And the upcoming schedule isn’t very kind to the Leafs — in Fruitvale Friday to face the Murdoch Division-leading Nitehawks before returning home Saturday against the Osoyoos Coyotes, who just happen to lead the Okanagan Division with a 21-5-0-0-1 record.Revolving door keeps revolvingAs with any losing team there are changes.The latest to be shown the door are forwards Brendan Smith and Nick Novin.McLellan wouldn’t get into specifics, saying there were “off-ice issues” that led to the departure of the two players.Also sent packing was forward Tyler Garcia, traded, McLellan said, to a junior team in the United States.Leafs captain, Rayce Miller, is also not with the Leafs at this time.However, Miller is back home in Arizona to nurse a bad back that has been plaguing the former 27-goal scorer for most of the season.Injuries continue to haunt the LeafsMcLellan said his club is starting to see some players return to the lineup.Back on defence is Dash Thompson along with Andy Fitzpatrick on the forward line — both have been sorely missed in the lineup.However, defenceman Max Daerendinger and forward Austin Lindsay remain on the IR with Lindsay back home seeing a specialist for an injury that happened against Summerland Steam. Ever have one of those days when you wake up, get out of bed and kick the bedpost with your foot?Then bang your head into the door to the bathroom you thought was open.Walking into the kitchen you trip over the cat and drive your knee into the kitchen cabinet.When you get to work the boss gives you an ear full even before the first cup of coffee is finished.Now multiply that feeling ten-fold and you have a clear indication what life is like inside the Nelson Leafs dressing room.What could go wrong is going wrong as the once-mighty, and proud, Heritage City franchise.“Internally, we’re fine,” confessed Nelson Leafs coach and GM Dave McLellan when asked about the mood of the club.“It’s a old cliché, but I thought we were the better team the other night (in Grand Forks). We just had an untimely goal that hurt us.”“We need to get healthier,” McLellan added. “We’ve got guys coming off the shelf . . . we’ve got new guys in the lineup that don’t know our system who cost us a goal.”For those keeping score at home Nelson watched a 3-1 lead vanish faster than the lear jet in a David Copperfield magic show to Grand Forks in a 4-3 loss to the Border Bruins.What’s worse is the Leafs, which have toyed with the Bruins for years, are now on the other end of the Yo-Yo.The woes of the Green and White have been well documented.last_img

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