"Might as well just jump in".
"They're not going to believe me and then it's going to happen", he said. However, if Babcock thinks that Andersen playing on Sunday is a possibility, then that suggests that Andersen doesn't appear to be concussed.
Toronto, as one might expect in those circumstances, owned the action in the early-going - shot attempts favouring the Leafs 23-7 after the first. The closer they got to making the playoffs, they got past the point of no return.
"For us we've kind of surpassed some outside expectations so it's a little bit of a different dynamic for each team". "So it's not just year-to-year you get better".
Washington on the other hand has to deal with a dynamic Leafs team who will be flying out there with three scoring lines and a bruiser line to keep the Capitals defensemen honest and their heads up.
"A lot of those games (in the past month) were tight", Babcock said. But hey, at least you won this game in the shootout! "Playoffs aren't going to be easy no matter how you skin the cat, so let's go into someone's building and try and give them hell". Another handful, including Jake Gardiner, Nazem Kadri and Tyler Bozak have just a single playoff series under their belts, that one coming during the Leafs last playoff appearance in 2013. But those players did not enjoy much playoff success.
When Washington returned to the locker room for a final time, Toronto had lost to Columbus in regulation, 3-2, meaning the Capitals will have the Maple Leafs in the opening round.
Get through all that and the Leafs still have to find a way to consistently beat Braden Holtby enough to win four games. And defenceman Nikita Zaitsev, who suffered an upper-body injury against Columbus, is expected to be in the Toronto lineup for the opener. They have one more regular season game left to play, against the Columbus Blue Jackets, and will be very important in determining their first round opponent.
That's all behind us now though; it's time for us fans and the Leafs players to focus on the prize.
The Penguins missed out on a chance to reach 20 road wins for a 10th consecutive season, something they'll now try to do Sunday in NY.
Ovechkin will start the post-season on a bit of a cold spell, as he did not score in the Capitals' final seven games after recording a hat trick against Minnesota on March 28.
One season does not a career make, of course. Their possession numbers were superb against the Blue Jackets as well, registering almost 60 per cent and above each. "And they're as hungry as any team in the National Hockey League and playing as good". Toronto of those days was built tenuously around veterans like Phil Kessel and Dion Phaneuf, ultimately unravelling in Game 7 of a first-round series against Boston.
"That was a good year too and a good team and now it's different", Komarov added. "At the start of the year, he was in that battle with Connor McDavid, which established him as tough to play against, even though he is not the biggest player in the league". There were nights of futility certainly, including against Crosby and Henrik Zetterberg, and he got hammered in the faceoff circle (46.8 per cent), but generally Matthews held his own while leading all Leaf forwards in garnering nearly 18 minutes per night.
He never spoke a bad word about Toronto after he came to the Penguins in a trade in the summer of 2015.