By Fred Wallace
Hi, this is Fred Wallace with " Off the Wire. "
It doesn't take much for Toronto Maple leaf fans to get excited.
Since their last Stanley Cup a few years ago, ( 1967 ) the Leafs have had some promising moments, but really you have to go back 15 & 25 years for those moments to have any semblance of reality.
But tonight as the LA Kings come to Toronto, you've got to believe in what you've seen.
After a puzzling home loss to OTTAWA, the Maple leafs hit the road for 4 games; winning sloppy at Chicago, outscoring the Stars in Dallas, outshining the Red Wings in Detroit and then doubling the Stanley Cup Champions in Washington.
A four game win streak all on the road- that's impressive, whether you're a Leaf fan or not.
Matthews. Tavares. Marner. Rielly. Anderson- that's very impressive.
And who is this Willie Nylander I keep hearing about ?
Those who hate the Leafs, and there are many in my neighbourhood, will justifiably point out it's too early in the season for such extended hype.
Many of the Leaf Dislikers, ironically are Montreal Canadiens fans, who will point to the not-too-distant-past when the Habs posted a spectacular record out of the gate and then unravelled from November on.
And Leaf fans will tell you Montreal's unravelling has been ongoing for almost half a decade- they'll also point out Montreal hasn't won the Stanley Cup in a quarter of a century.
And that's what makes the start for the Toronto Maple Leafs so much fun, so captivating.
There's the legitimate possibility that Toronto is a frontrunner for their first Stanley Cup since 1967........& there's every possibility it may come unhinged prolonging the non-title drought for yet another hockey season.
I'm Fred Wallace