Tornado watch hits Florida ahead of Leafs-Lightning Game 6

Apr 29 2023, 9:28 pm

You can add “possible tornado” to the weird list of things that have happened to the Toronto Maple Leafs in their recent playoff history.

Ahead of tonight’s Game 6 matchup in the first round of the playoffs against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the hosts had to cancel a watch party due to a Florida tornado warning around the area of Amalie Arena.

ā€œIn the interest of public safety, tonight’s Plaza Watch Party has been cancelled due to the Tornado Warning issued by the NWS. Please stay safe Tampa Bay and Go Bolts!ā€, Sportsnet’s Luke Fox shared in a statement from the Lightning, with a tornado watch throughout much of the state until 10 pm ET tonight.

There were 71 recorded tornadoes in the state of Florida in 2022, and seven touching down already in 2023 through the first four months of the year, per Florida-based digital TCPalm.com.

The Leafs are leading 3-2 in the series, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a Toronto fan that’sĀ really all too confident that the team has the upper hand in the matchup.

Dating back to 2013, Toronto has now lost 11 straight chances at clinching a first-round series win in the NHL playoffs.

But prior to Thursday’s loss in Game 5, Toronto was riding a three-game winning streak and remains needing just one win to clinch the series.

“I think both teams have shown they can win in either building and in any situation. Certainly, that helps our cause. You canā€™t just lean on that. We have to still play better,” Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe told reporters yesterday of the team’s confidence heading into tonight’s game. “That is the big focus and where the confidence might come from. We got the two wins on the road despite not playing our best hockey. Collectively and individually, we think we can get to another level. That is just what is going to be required to defeat a team like this.”

Puck drop is set for 7 pm ET for tonight’s matchup, which can be viewed on both Sportsnet and CBC nationally.

Adam LaskarisAdam Laskaris

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