1. Can the Toronto Maple Leafs finally get it done in 2020-21?
This is without doubt the biggest question facing the Toronto Maple Leafs in the 2020-21 NHL season.
Can they finally put it all together and actually go on a deep run in the Stanley Cup Playoffs?
It seems every year the Maple Leafs deliver deliver fresh disappointment after flaming out in the First Round, and they couldn’t even make it that far in 2019-20 after losing to the Columbus Blue Jackets in the Qualifying Round.
For a team that has an All-Star goalie in Frederik Andersen and an abundance of talent in a forward group that includes Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, John Tavares and William Nylander, not to mention an elite defenseman in Morgan Reilly on the backend, the fact that the Leafs have yet to cause any serious damage in the postseason is criminal.
However, could it all change this season?
General Manager Kyle Dubas certainly listened to outside voices by adding a layer of tough and grit to this team by acquiring the likes of Joe Thornton, Wayne Simmonds and T.J. Brodie, and those three will make Toronto a much tougher out while adding secondary scoring.
However, the Maple Leafs will need more than that. They will need consistent high-level goaltending from Andersen, they will need more solid and responsible play in their own zone, they will need less careless mistakes, they will need more from Nylander, they will need a bounce-back year from Tavares and they will need Matthews and Marner to take the next giant leap in their respective games.
If the Toronto Maple Leafs can get all of those things, coupled with some puck luck here and there, then they should be well-equipped to take that next step and actually taste some success in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.