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1998-99 Toronto Maple Leafs season

1998–99 Toronto Maple Leafs season

Offseason

The Toronto Maple Leafs moved from the Central division of the Western Conference to the Northeast division of the Eastern Conference.

Regular season

The 1998–99 season was a tremendous improvement for the Maple Leafs over the 1997–98 season and the team got plenty of help from its new members, who included Bryan Berard, Sylvain Cote, Curtis Joseph, Alexander Karpovtsev (who led the league in +/- with +39 but wasn't eligible for the NHL Plus-Minus Award since he played in only 58 games), Yanic Perreault and Steve Thomas (who finished second on the team in points with 73). Former Vancouver Canucks head coach Pat Quinn replaced Mike Murphy as head coach of the team. Six Maple Leafs scored 20 or more goals. Toronto set a club record for most regular-season wins (45) and earned 97 points to finish second in the Northeast Division and fourth in the Eastern Conference. They lead the league in most goals for (268), and were the only team to score 200 or more even-strength goals.

Maple Leaf Gardens

Air Canada Centre

Season standings

Northeast Division GP W L T Pts GF GA PIM
Ottawa Senators 82 44 23 15 103 239 179 892
Toronto Maple Leafs 82 45 30 7 97 268 231 1095
Boston Bruins 82 39 30 13 91 214 181 1182
Buffalo Sabres 82 37 28 17 91 207 175 1561
Montreal Canadiens 82 32 39 11 75 184 209 1299

Skaters

Note: GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; PIM = Penalties in minutes

Regular season Playoffs
Player # GP G A Pts PIM GP G A Pts PIM
Mats Sundin 13 82 31 52 83 58
Tomas Kaberle 15 57 4 18 22 12

Goaltending

Note: GP= Games played; W= Wins; L= Losses; T = Ties; SO = Shutouts; GAA = Goals Against Average
Player GP W L T SO GAA
Curtis Joseph 67 35 24 7 3 2.56

Transactions

  • March 23, 1999: Los Angeles traded C Yanic Perreault to Toronto for C Jason Podollan and a 3rd-round pick in the 1999 Entry Draft.
  • March 23, 1999: Toronto traded D Jason Smith to Edmonton for a 4th-round pick in the 1999 Entry Draft and a 2nd-round pick in the 2000 Entry Draft.

Playoffs

Eastern Conference Finals

The Toronto Maple Leafs and Buffalo Sabres met in the 1999 Eastern Conference Finals. The Maple Leafs were coming off a six-game series win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, while the Sabres were coming off a six-game series win themselves, over the Boston Bruins. Toronto was having its best playoff since 1994, when they last made a conference final series. Buffalo, on the other hand, was in the third round for the second consecutive year.

With the series victory, the Sabres advanced to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in 24 years.

Toronto (4) vs. Buffalo (7)
Date Away Home Score
May 23 Buffalo Toronto 5 – 4
May 25 Buffalo Toronto 6 – 3
May 27 Toronto Buffalo 4 – 2
May 29 Toronto Buffalo 5 – 2
May 31 Buffalo Toronto 4 – 2
Buffalo wins series 4–1 and Prince of Wales Trophy

Awards and honors

  • Curtis Joseph, Runner-up, Vezina Trophy.
  • Curtis Joseph, Runner-up, Lester B. Trophy.
  • Pat Quinn, Runner-Up, Jack Adams Trophy.

References

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