Review: TOR37 Liljegren vs. NYR
Breaking down the good and the bad
Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Timothy Liljegren faced a big test last night against the New York Rangers.
With Jake Muzzin and Justin Holl absent, Liljegren was elevated to the second pair with Rasmus Sandin. The Leafs sprinted to a 3-1 lead, then allowed five consecutive goals to lose.
But how well did Liljegren personally do?
As Liljegren’s former AHL coach, let me share my thoughts.
Liljegren did just fine from a statistical point of view vs. NYR.
Per Natural Stat Trick, he led all TOR Ds in 5v5 shots (+17, -14) and only trailed Morgan Rielly-T.J. Brodie in 5v5 expected goals (59%). These positive numbers are in line with what Liljegren’s achieved in third-pair usage throughout the 2021-22 season.
Broadly speaking, then, Liljegren was able to help his team get up-ice and control the tempo in top-four minutes. A very promising sign.
However, the Leafs were outscored 2-1 with TOR37 on the ice. What happened?
Let’s look at some clips.
TOR 3-3 Goal
Good fundamentals lead to quick, efficient puck play.
NYR 3-3 Goal
Tentativeness with the puck leads to a big breakdown without the puck
NYR 5-3 Goal
Two camera angles tell two different stories
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