The Toronto Maple Leafs vs. The Carolina Sucks

TORONTO ON - DECEMBER 28: Mikhail Grabovski #84 of the Toronto Maple Leafs gets set to try and tip a shot in front of Ryan Carter #29 of the Carolina Hurricanes in a game on December 28 2010 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto Ontario. The Hurricanes defeated the Leafs 4-3. (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images)
Puck drop: 7:00
TV: Sportsnet
Radio: AM640

During a normal day teaching gym, I have to play Coach Bombay. Yesterday, when a grade two kid cried because his friend made fun of him after beating him at soccer, I had to settle the little dispute before sending them back to their classroom teacher. Good sportsmanship is all part of the learning process, and I love that.

On the other hand, when it comes to the Leafs kicking the Carolina Sucks while they're in last place in the conference, I'm all Coach Riley. WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! (1:41)

Here are the lineups, as per James Mirtle's article:

Leafs projected lineup

Lupul - Bozak - Kessel
MacArthur - Grabovski - Kulemin
Frattin - Connolly - Armstrong
Steckel - Dupuis - Crabb

Gunnarsson - Phaneuf
Gardiner - Schenn
Liles - Franson

Reimer

'Canes projected lineup (based on last game)

Dwyer - Staal - Tlusty
Ponikarovsky - Ruutu - Jokinen
LaRose - Sutter - Nodl
Bowman - Brent - Stewart

Gleason - McBain
Faulk - Spacek
Allen - Joslin

Ward

Other Notes:

- Jeff Skinner is out with "flu-like symptoms". What a faker.

- Kirk Muller only has one win in seven games with his new team.

- The Hurricanes have only a 0.5% chance of making the playoffs, as per Sports Club Stats.

- In the above-linked article, James Mirtle points out that Keith Aulie is once again sitting. Sense, this does not make.

- There's plenty of preview video available via the Leafs' webiste.

- Given that the 'Canes beat the Leafs last time, there's no way that the Leafs can be excused for dropping two points in this one. Good teams have to take advantage of games against weaker teams, especially when their second-best player is out, their coach just got canned, and their defence looks like a pile of... something ugly.

WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN! WIN!

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