COYOTES (4-3-1) at MAPLE LEAFS (1-4-2)
7:30pm – ACC (TSN 4)
Seven games in and only one win.
We all expected this season to be tough. Hell, those of us who have been not-so-patiently waiting for a rebuild ASKED for this. But it still hurts when the Leafs lose. We might have asked for it, but that doesn’t mean we have to enjoy it.
The good news (despite their record) is the Maple Leafs actually look like they are showing signs of an improved overall game. The Buds are out-shooting and out-chancing opponents on nearly a nightly basis, something that fans haven’t witnessed in half a decade. But the “playing well but still losing” theme has already been exhausted by the media and blogosphere, so I will spare you the redundancy. Suffice to say, Babcock has the squad working hard and playing with structure, and that can only bode well for the future.
The Leafs’ nemesis, as of late, has been goaltending. With an 0-4-1 record to start the season, Bernier takes a seat tonight and the “Reiminister of Defense” (1-0-1) gets the nod. Coach Babcock, a firm believer that there should be no question marks in the crease, clearly expected Bernier to do more with the opportunity he was given. And so, James Reimer will get his chance to show the new Leafs’ coach what he can do.
Joining Jake Gardiner and Tyler Bozak, who remain sidelined with undisclosed injuries, is center Nick Spaling will also sit out tonight (also undisclosed), paving the way for Peter Holland to return to the lineup. In case you haven’t connected the dots, that means the Leafs will be going with Kadri, Holland, Arcobello and Froese down the middle tonight……..What could go wrong?
The Coyotes roll into town sporting a 4-3-1 record on the backs of veterans Hanzal and Boedker, and rookies Domi and Duclair. Domi currently leads all rookies with 9 points (3g, 6a) in 8 games; along with a +6 rating, while averaging 17:36 in ice time.
It should be a fun tilt. Plus it’s Monday and if you’re anything like me, finishing up at work and watching a Leaf game sounds pretty damn good.
Toronto Maple Leafs
GF (5v5) – 13
GA (5v5) – 12
CF% (5v5) – 53.3
PP% – 9.5
PK% – 75.0
GF (5v5) – 17
GA (5v5) – 8
CF% (5v5) – 46.0
PP% – 8.8
PK% – 83.9
Toronto Maple Leafs
JVR – Kadri – Komarov
Mathias – Holland – Boyes
Winnik – Arcobello – Lupul
Grabner – Froese – Parenteau
Hunwick – Phaneuf
Harrington – Rielly
Marincin – Polak
Domi – Hanzal – Duclair
Rieder – Chipchura – Boedker
Martinook – Richardson – Doan
Scott – Gordon – Downie
Ekman-Larsson – Stone
Dahlbeck – Michalek
Grossmann – Murphy
Today in Leafs History….
Today in Leafs history brought to you by …… @DoctorRobert
- 1927 – Leafs acquire defenseman Edwin Gorman from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for cash.
- 1946 – Leafs go undefeated in their fourth straight game to start off the 1946-1947 championship season as the beat the Chicago Black Hawks 2-1 in Toronto.
- 1966 – Punch Imlach’s Leafs pick up their first win of the 1966-1967 season as they walk away with a 3-2 victory over Detroit.
- 1980 – Leafs legend Darryl Sittler sets a club record as he picks up his 15th career hat trick in a 8-5 loss to the Canucks.
- 1985 – The hometown Leafs lose a 7-5 thriller to the Minnesota North Stars. This would bring their season record to 1-7-0 throughout the first eight games of the 1985-1986 season.
- 1998 – After beating the Penguins 6-4 in Pittsburgh just two night prior, the Leafs drop a stinker 2-0 to the Pens in Toronto. Peter Skudra stopped all 27 Maple Leaf shots while Curtis Joseph failed to stop 2 of 19 Pittsburgh shots.
- 2010 – Legendary Leaf Colton Orr scores the game winner as the Leafs ice the Panthers 3-1 at the ACC. Jean-Sebastien Giguere stopped 21 of 22 shots in the win.
- 2013 – Leafs pound the Penguins 4-1 at the ACC. Dave Bolland led the way with a shorthanded goal and an empty netter, while James Reimer stopped 37 of 38 shots. (Leafs were outshot 38-29.)
Max Domi tells me one of his fondest early ACC memories is playing mini sticks by the Leafs wives lounge with Wade Belak.#TMLtalk
— Paul Hendrick (@HennyTweets) October 26, 2015