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Preview: Maple Leafs v. Satan's Minions

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Pre-Game: 6:30pm LeafsTV
Broadcast: 7pm TSN National
Post-Game: 10pm LeafsTV


Previous Meetings

Final - 10.29.2008 1 2 3 OT SO Total
Toronto Maple Leafs 0 3 2 0 1 6
New Jersey Devils 2 2 1 0 0 5

Complete Coverage >

 For a view from the Mickey Mouse side of things here's SBN's own John Fischer of In Lou We Trust:

The Devils are going to coming up to Toronto on Tuesday for a competitive game of hockey, that will count for points in the NHL. While the Devils have lost to Buffalo on Saturday; they are 8-2-0 in their last 10 with wins over Philadelphia, Montreal, Pittsburgh, and their most hated rivals, the Rangers in that span. What's more is that ex-Leaf goalie Scott Clemmensen is 8-1 in his last 9 starts, with some excellent games; so it's not as if the Devils have a problem in net or anything like that. It's a question as to whether he'll get the start as Kevin Weekes wasn't the reason why the Devils recently lost to Buffalo and Weekes traditionally has done better in Toronto than Clemmensen has.

As far as what to expect out of the Devils, expect a lackluster powerplay, a shaky penalty kill, but some strong even-strength hockey. The defense is good at bending without breaking and picking up loose pucks off rebounds and broken plays. And the Devils' skaters can hang with a team in close games (e.g. the recent Philadelphia and Montreal games) as well as be able to turn up the offense should there be a defense and a goaltender that is shaky that night. In general, the Devils like to dump the puck into the zone and battle on the boards for possession - regardless of line or player. It could be big Dainius Zubrus, it could be tiny Brian Gionta, it could be the skilled Patrik Elias and Zach Parise, and it could even be the mighty Bobby Holik. Of course, if they see the lane open for a big pass, they'll take that risk. The Devils love to fire the puck - sometimes regardless of skaters in the line of the shot - so hopefully there's enough padding on those legs and ankles.

The Devils were supposed to fall apart once Martin Brodeur went down with a serious injury. Let's see how that worked out:

16 - 9 - 2

Lost 1

Njd_medium

What a surprise, the team is not terrible. That should give this guy some more ammo.

Meanwhile, in Leafville, the buds are searching for their first three game winning streak since last March. Maybe if they tell the guys that they are already out of the playoffs they'll do it. Who will score the winner? The smart money is on Ian White as he has the last two game winners.

Who needs to play better tonight?

GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG GTG SOG PCT
2008 - Nik Antropov 29 10 10 20 -4 12 3 0 2 1 82 12.2

GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG GTG SOG PCT
2008 - Lee Stempniak 23 4 13 17 -4 8 0 0 1 0 59 6.8

GP G A P +/- PIM PPG SHG GWG GTG SOG PCT
2008 - Alexei Ponikarovsky 29 8 11 19 3 16 2 0 1 0 66 12.1


All three guys need to be bigger parts of the offence for the Leafs. Stempniak did some good work in Buffalo but it's time to see more offence on the powerplay from him especially.

And who's still out?

Toronto Maple Leafs Injuries

Questionable

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Niklas Hagman head 12.13.2008

Out (IR / Out / Suspended / Physically unvailable)

Player Injury Type Injury Date
Jamal Mayers broken right hand 12.2.2008
Jonas Frogren torn muscles in left arm 11.25.2008
Luke Schenn knee 12.7.2008

 

The Leafs have been feast or famine against the Devils lately so based on last game I think that we can expect another low-scoring matchup.

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