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Kyle Clifford Gets Himself Ejected In The First Period And The Leafs Are Completely Unbothered

That's assault, brother. 

It's actually a 5 minute major and an ejection early in the first period for Kyle Clifford. 

The Leafs have always been this little fragile team that collapses. It is their identity. Their trademark. It's baked into their DNA. A brain cramp like this historically would've resulted in the Leafs being on their heals and ending this game and possibly series before it started. 

Not tonight though. The Leafs had better chances shorthanded for 5 minutes than the Lightning did. Then followed it up with a quick goal by Muzzin to take control of the game despite being shorthanded for over 33% of the period. 

Deep down in places Toronto fans won't talk about at parties...I think they liked it. Dirty hit. No place for it. But...sort of sends a message to the 2x defending champ that this is going to be a war. They controlled that period and almost hit Tampa with a dagger in the final seconds of the period. They're not going to roll over and let Tampa pat their bellies like every other team has done in the first round for the last 20 some odd years. Buckle in.