Nearly 12 hours after the Leafs stunning victory over the Detroit Red Wings the city is still breathless. Horns blared through the night as revelers took to the street, dancing gleefully at the most unexpected result.
Thankfully, the crowd remained friendly. There were no issues of violence, no burning of cars (unlike those hooligans in Montreal). However, police did ask one fan to "be careful" as he stood by an effigy of Bryan McCabe in Dundas Square.
For some, it was the culmination of a life's dream.
“I never thought I’d see it,” sobbed Parkdale’s Allison Hortitller. “It’s a miracle. I’m just so happy.”
Allison’s boyfriend, Clark Gildin, appeared equally excited.
“No one wanted to believe,” he said while waving a giant Leafs flag, his body painted blue and white. “But, we never gave up hope. Where are all the haters now, eh?”
Predicted to finish last overall by many “experts,” the Leafs have made believers over the city’s beleaguered hockey fans.
On fan held up a sign that said “My “Hart” goes to Dominic Moore.” Another proclaimed “Kulemin is one Kool-O-Man.”
Caught up in the excitement was Swedish tourist Ingrid Johansson. Although she admitted that she didn’t fully understand what all the fuss was about, she said it was “very nice to see all happy people.”
Johansson would not comment on the status of Mats Sundin.
Toronto mayor David Miller was widely critiqued by the crowd for refusing to plan a parade to celebrate the glorious victory.
“I can’t believe the soccer-loving (man) is making us wait until we beat Montreal Saturday before calling for a parade,” said Gildin. “We’ve waited long enough.”
Leafs fans rock the Joe (Detroit Free Press)