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Game Preview: Columbus Blue Jackets at Toronto Maple Leafs

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We’ve clinched the playoff spot, now can we get the Battle of Ontario volume 5?

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Columbus Blue Jackets Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Tonight is finally the stress free Maple Leafs game we’ve been craving.

The Maple Leafs take on the Columbus Blue Jackets the day after clinching a spot in the 2017 NHL playoffs. There is something on the line, getting a single point out of this game will keep the Maple Leafs in third place for the Atlantic Division, and set their first round opponent as the Ottawa Senators.

Columbus Blue Jackets at Toronto Maple Leafs
6:00PM - Air Canada Centre
TV: Sportsnet / Radio: TSN1050
SBN: The Cannon

It will be nervous tonight nonetheless, as starting goalie Frederik Andersen will not dress for tonight's game, after being viciously attacked by noted scumbag Tom Sestitio in last night’s game versus the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Tonight’s goal tending tandem are Curtis McElhinney and Garret Sparks, recalled from the Toronto Marlies on an emergency basis for tonight’s game.

The last time McElhinney was taking over for an injured Andersen was March 28th versus the Florida Panthers. It was a 3-2 victory with McElhinney saving the day, and making 25 saves.

Andersen was back quickly, starting in goal again the next game. Hopefully this is the same situation.

The Columbus Blue Jackets lost to the Philadelphia Flyers yesterday and coach John Tortorella’s anger at the team over their play could mean no one is getting a day off today. There was some hope that the Jackets would rest their better forwards, and Sergei Bobrovsky would take the night off. We’ll find out closer to game time hat the plans are.

Quick numbers

- Toronto Columbus
- Toronto Columbus
Record 40-26-15 49-24-8
Division 3rd 3rd
Conference 7th 3rd
League 13th 4th
Goal Differential 249 / 239 = +10 246 / 193 = +53
Power Play 24.2% - 2nd 20.1% - 11th
Penalty Kill 82.3% - 9th 82.2% - 10th
Most Goals Auston Matthews - 40 Cam Atkinson - 34
Most Points Auston Matthews - 69 Cam Atkinson - 61
Top Goalie Frederik Andersen - .918sv% Sergei Bobrrovsky - .931sv%

Potential Lines

Zach Hyman - Auston Matthews - William Nylander
Leo Komarov - Nazem Kadri - Connor Brown
James van Riemsdyk - Tyler Bozak - Mitchell Marner
Matt Martin - Brian Boyle - Kasperi Kapanen

Morgan Rielly - Connor Carrick
Jake Gardiner - Nikita Zaitsev
Matt Hunwick - Roman Polak

Curtis McElhinney
Garret Sparks

Nick Foligno - Brandon Dubinsky - Cam Atkinson
Brandon Saad - Alexander Wennberg - Sam Gagner
Scott Hartnell - Boone Jenner - Oliver Bjorkstrand
Matt Calvert - William Karlsson - Josh Anderson

Gabriel Carlsson - Seth Jones
Jack Johnson - David Savard
Kyle Quincey - Markus Nutivaara

Sergei Bobrovsky
Joonas Korpisalo

On February 15th, Curtis McElhinney faced off against the team that waived him and was opposite the new back up, Joonas Korpisalo. The Maple Leafs lost the game 5-2. This was the middle of a period when the Maple Leafs were winning one game, losing two. This is a Maple Leafs team now that has won seven of their past ten. That beat the Pittsburgh Penguins.

All they need tonight is one point.

Let’s do this Leafs.

Bring on Ottawa.

Go Leafs Go!