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In N.H.L. Playoffs, a Canadian Divide Between Winners and Losers

  • May 17, 2022

In a news conference after Toronto’s Game 7 loss to the Lightning, the Toronto players, low-voiced and red-eyed, were sad.

“It’s hard to explain,” the team’s captain, John Tavares, a former star of the Islanders who was born in suburban Toronto and who signed a $77 million, seven-year contract with the club he famously adored as a child in 2018, said of the loss. “It hurts. It’s disappointing. We’re trying to go all the way, and we haven’t been able to get past this hurdle.”

Auston Matthews, the American center who scored a league-best 60 goals in the regular season, cap pulled low over his eyes, said, “We’re very disappointed.”

Mitch Marner, a winger who grew up in suburban Toronto, said, “We’re sick and tired of feeling this way.”

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