The Maple Leafs are riding the Sparkles train and the first stop is Winnipeg, Manitoba. Home of Slurpees, human habitrails, and black flies, and also the New Winnipeg Jets. Someday they'll get back to Jets Classic, because this new formula can't last. The Maple Leafs are coming off a win over another western Canadian team, the Edmonton Oilers, but Winnipeg has an advantage the Oilers didn't have: THE BEST DAMN FANS IN HOCKEY
Oh, that will never not be stupid.
So, will it be James Reimer starting in his home-province NHL teams arena, or will it be the rookie sensation, the Leafs history maker, Garrett "Mr. "Sparkles" Sparkle" Sparks?
Toronto Maple Leafs at Winnipeg Jets
7:30PM - MTS Centre
TV: Sportsnet Radio: Sportsnet Online: Sportsnet Beamed into your head: Sportsnet
SBN: Arctic Ice Hockey
The Jets have an average record, 11-12-2, are 5-4-0 at home. They average more goals for but also more goals against than the Leafs, so if the Leafs D and Goal can play well this is a winnable game.
Nazem Kadri has recorded seven points (two goals, five assists) in nine career games versus the Jets.
Brad Boyes has registered 19 points (seven goals, 12 assists) in 26 career games against Winnipeg.
Martin Marincin needs 1 game played to reach 100 career NHL games played.
Tyler Bozak needs 1 goal to reach 100 career NHL goals
Here are your projected lines for tonight
Maple Leafs (I made them up)
James van Reimsdyk - Nazem Kadri - Leo Komarov
Shawn Mathias - Tyler Bozak - P.A. Parenteau
Daniel Winnik - Nick Spaling - Michael Grabner
Peter Holland - Byron Froese - Brad Boyes
Jake Gardiner - Dion Phaneuf
Matt Hunwick - Morgan Rielly
Martin Marincin - Roman Polak
Scratched: Rich Clune, Frank Corrado, because that's a rule.
Injuries: Joffrey Lupul, Stephane Robidas, Nathan Horton
Jets (from previous game with twitter tweaks)
Andrew Ladd - Bryan Little - Blake Wheeler
Mathieu Perreault - Mark Scheifele - Drew Stafford
Nikolaj Ehlers - Alexander Burmistrov - Chris Thorburn
Adam Lowry - Andrew Copp - Anthony Peluso
Tobias Enstrom - Tyler Myers
Adam Pardy - Dustin Byfuglien
Mark Stuart - Jacob Trouba
Anything of interest being reported?
Jonathan Bernier has been sent down to the Marlies for a conditioning stint.
What does the enemy say about us?
At the AIH game preview, well, he's rather mean.
Well, it's that time of year again. That day when the eternal tire bonfire that is the centre of the hockey universe enters the orbit of the NHL's Pluto, our Winnipeg Jets. An organization that throws insane amounts of money at coaches and hires a grab bag of hockey management so as to create a smokescreen to distract their pathetic fan base into believing that hope exists. The Toronto Maple Leafs, the original troll job. A franchise so bad that anyone brave enough to wear any of their apparel runs the risk of being pitied at Mr.T like levels. The time to take advantage of the Leafs in MTS Centre is right off the the opening whistle, while they are still confused by the lower bowl patrons actually in their seats and not treating the concourse like a rich hoser version of a Catalina wine mixer. Take heart Leafs, there will be plenty of your supporters wasting the oxygen at MTS Centre Wednesday night. You'll recognize them by their slovenly appearance and inability to make eye contact with even other Leafs fans.
WE HAVE FEELINGS YOU KNOW!
My hopes for the game
The Leafs blow the doors off the Jets and shut the crowd up before they can boo completely random players, the Leafs shut out the Jets and the season is turned around at this point. A long positive march to the Cup commences.
What? A guy can dream.